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Ford Announces End of the Road for Mercury


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Too bad. The last of the brands that were aimed at the sweet spot I prefer is now dead. First Plymouth, then Pontiac, and now Mercury. All three were starved to death by their parent companies. We

But the G6 was the pinnacle of automotive perfection.

I really think they are trying to emulate the successful Toyota model--their wide mainstream US range goes from the tiny entry-level Yaris and Corolla to the upscale Avalon, with full size and compact

You think $h!boxes like the Volare, Aries, Sundance, Breeze, etc were 'badass'?

Of course not.

However, the 'Cuda and Roadrunner were. Plymouth once made performance on a budget their mantra and the cars looked the part. The Dodges didn't always pull that off so well.

Don't get me wrong, there are some Dodges of that era I can go for - it's just that Plymouth often got the recipe just right.

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Just to pick nits, I didn't actually name Plymouth as a midrange brand.

But you grouped it with Pontiac and Mercury (both clearly midrange) and later mentioned that there was no tolerance for the middle ground. Reading between the lines one can get the wrong idea.

I never said Plymouth was the midrange brand. It was Plymouth then Dodge then Chrysler. Go back and read what I posted.

I must've misread it the first time. Did you rephrase it after the edit and I got a stale copy? I dunno... losing my mind, I guess.

For both of you, the prosecution withdrawn.

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I must've misread it the first time. Did you rephrase it after the edit and I got a stale copy? I dunno... losing my mind, I guess.

For both of you, the prosecution withdrawn.

No edit..I wrote 'Dodge covers the lower end where Plymouth used to be plus the middle ground'. Pretty clear.

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Of course not.

However, the 'Cuda and Roadrunner were. Plymouth once made performance on a budget their mantra and the cars looked the part. The Dodges didn't always pull that off so well.

Don't get me wrong, there are some Dodges of that era I can go for - it's just that Plymouth often got the recipe just right.

They always seemed interchangeable to me...same drivetrains across both brands, often the same interior designs, just interior trim differences and subtle exterior differences...Road Runner vs Super Bee, GTX vs Coronet R/T (& Charger R/T), 'Cuda vs Dart GTS , 'Cuda vs Challenger R/T, Duster vs Demon..(with the '60s A- and E- bodies being the most differentiated). There were some pretty incredible cars from Dodge and Plymouth from the mid '60s to early '70s.

Not to be nostalgic, but sometimes I wouldn't mind being 20 years older (like my brother is) so I could have experienced the cars (and music) of that era when it was new...

Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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But you grouped it with Pontiac and Mercury (both clearly midrange) and later mentioned that there was no tolerance for the middle ground. Reading between the lines one can get the wrong idea.

I must've misread it the first time. Did you rephrase it after the edit and I got a stale copy? I dunno... losing my mind, I guess.

For both of you, the prosecution withdrawn.

No worries.

I did make an implication that might lead to the conclusion you reached, but it was more directed at society in general.

Suffice it to say that prcing was a minor factor in my affinity for those brands.

There were some pretty incredible cars from Dodge and Plymouth from the mid '60s to early '70s.

On this bit we agree completely!

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The Big Three gave up the luxury of selling many different cars with many different models when they lost 50% of the US new car market as well as market share in Canada and other markets.

I'm currently reading Alfred Sloan's "My Years with General Motors", the Detroit companies are in a very similar position to GM in the late teens and early twenties and this is how they are going to fix the problem. If a division can nolonger benefit the corporation then what is the purpose? Mercury had no stand alone dealers, did not exist outside the US, had carbon copy models for 40 years, and had no brand image. Even Pontiac and Oldsmobile had something of a tattered image left when they were discontinued, Mercury like Plymouth was a exercise in badge engineering for the majority of its life. Just take a look at the sales figures from FoMOCo this month and see how Lincoln-Mercury is the weak part of the chain. Ford is doing very well and both Ford cars and trucks are doing well in consumer perception but Lincoln still struggles to compete with Cadillac, Audi, Acura, etc dispute recent attempts to build the brand. Mercury is simply lost between Eco-boosted Taurus SHOs and Hybrid MKZs.

I'm curious to hear what Lincoln-Mercury dealers think about this and to see what products Lincoln has in the pipeline following the MKX. I think the MKZ-Hybrid will do well because it will nolonger have to compete with the Milan Hybrid. I also see Lincoln becoming slightly sporty like many had wished for Mercury. If this move turns out to be a major win for Lincoln then this may have been the best move Ford has made since not taking government funds.

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Too bad.

The last of the brands that were aimed at the sweet spot I prefer is now dead. First Plymouth, then Pontiac, and now Mercury.

All three were starved to death by their parent companies.

We now have a near-complete dichotomy with luxury on one side, and basic transportation on the other.

I care for neither.

I guess this shift represents our populace these days, divided into two camps with no tolerance for middle ground.

I'd say the answer is the Hyundai Genesis. Rear drive, V8, $33-42,000, full size interior. There is still the Chrysler 300, but that is a rather dated car with a uncompetitive interior. Other than that, the Americans are quickly giving up on rear drive and V8s. The in between brands are quickly dying, but when a Taurus is $27-40k, and a Lincoln or Cadillac can be had for $35k, there isn't much room in the middle.

I don't believe Mercury will be missed that much, they don't have a big market presence, don't have a passionate customer base, and the same product is on sale at the Ford lot across the street, just with a horizontal grille.

They stressed that Lincoln will have "fuel efficient powertrains" I interpret that as underpowered. A Prius has an extremely fuel efficient powertrain, that is about the last car in the world I'd want, aside from one of those electric G-Wiz things. "Fuel efficient" almost always means slow and underpowered. Strap the 5.0 V8 in an rear drive Lincoln sedan and they could be on to something. And why not Ecoboost the V8.

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i like mercury, but it really needed a new sable to continue.

i kind of wish they would continue the milan and mariner another year. i like the grille and interior differences.

if Pontiac is gone, then i guess mercury gone isn't so hard for me either.

wouldn't it just be nicer if most of the other Asian brands would go away so we could bring back Olds, Pontiac, Mercury?

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i like mercury, but it really needed a new sable to continue.

i kind of wish they would continue the milan and mariner another year. i like the grille and interior differences.

if Pontiac is gone, then i guess mercury gone isn't so hard for me either.

wouldn't it just be nicer if most of the other Asian brands would go away so we could bring back Olds, Pontiac, Mercury?

It sure would.

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Hopefully whatever the C-segment Lincoln turns out to be, it will have totally unique metal and trim and not just a Focus w/ Lincoln grille and taillights. The line about an Ecoboost engine is the Navigator is interesting...Ford hasn't done a RWD/AWD Ecoboost model yet. I'm assuming the Navigator (and Expedition) will remain BOF, RWD/AWD SUVs--Ford and Lincoln already have plenty of FWD/AWD CUVs.

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There are no more middle class car or middle car brands anymore. Your choices are now limited. These are your American car brands you can now purchase:

Chrysler:

Dodge or Chrysler or Jeep or Ram( truck brand)

Ford:

Ford or Lincoln

GM:

Chevrolet or Buick or Cadillac and GMC truck

Then if you just list the car brands and remove the truck and suv brands:

Dodge, Chrysler

Ford, Lincoln

Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac

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The Big Three gave up the luxury of selling many different cars with many different models when they lost 50% of the US new car market as well as market share in Canada and other markets.

THIS, completely. And sadly.

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Well, that is just the way it is...I'm not sure if the automakers are completely to blame or if the market is to blame...'mainstream' or entry brands have moved upscale, premium brands have moved downscale, crowding out the increasingly redundant middle.

Buyers want premium content in their mainstream models..the market for stripper basic models isn't there anymore..thus, the mainstream brands have broad ranges of trim within their models, overlapping where the middle brands previously were. With loaded models like the Taurus Limited available (and pushing into MKs pricing), what's the point in a Sable? Likewise at GM, with the Regal coming, what's the point of Pontiac and Saturn between it and the Malibu? No room.

In recent years, other than the Solstice, G8 and Sky, what did Pontiac (or Saturn) offer that Chevy and Buick didn't? Nothing. What did Mercury offer that Ford didn't have? Nothing.

Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
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In recent years, other than the Solstice, G8 and Sky, what did Pontiac (or Saturn) offer that Chevy and Buick didn't? Nothing.

G6 coupe and convertible. And the Vibe! (*shutter*)

So, lets flip this...

Other than the ____, what did GMC have that Chevy and Cadillac didn't?

Other than the ____, What did pre-2010 Buick have that Chevy and Cadillac didn't?

In these cases, there is nothing to even put in the blanks!

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G6 coupe and convertible. And the Vibe! (*shutter*)

True..I was thinking the G6 and Aura as equivalent to the Malibu--FWD midsize sedans w/ 4 and V6 versions..the coupe and convertible seemed to be barely on the radar. Forgot the forgettable Vibe.

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That certainly lays it out in stark fashion, 98.

I remember when people used to say hateful things about getting over Oldsmobile all over the internet. Well they kept killing brands. Then it hit home when other people's brands were killed. Then the market share for the imports kept increasing. Volkswagen is buying up everything they see in their quest to be number one, Toyota who was untouchable falters, and Hyundai has become the shining star.

Here is the scary part. Back in the day the GM brands had fewer models and sold more cars. Do you realize Lincoln had three cars and sold more cars than they have now with the fleet they have. Fords are now overlapping with Lincolns in price and I read where a Lincoln executive said he cannot advertise the Lincoln MKS like he needs to as a luxury car because Ford is comparing the Ford Taurus SHO to Audi.

I think the thing is none of the American car companies knows how to market or manage their brands. All of them have rich history and do not use it. It sometimes seems like they have conceded the fight to the imports.

Why does every car have to be import in appearance in performance and in ride and in the size? People want American cars that look, act, and drive and feel American.

I guess it comes down to marketing, money and the globalization and the times we live in. Just like the middle class got the squeeze so it happened in the car market. I remember when I used to look forward to the new cars. You got exciting to see what the next model was like.

You can also predict it now:

four cylinder engine maybe a V6

seats five people

has bucket seats

rides like Euro sports sedan

looks European or Asian

between 186-194 inches long

front wheel drive

They have become predictable appliances. It just seems people do not care about cars or have the passion anymore. It was obvious Mercury was starved. As much as I am fan of the Grand Marquis, they kept making it look uglier and cheaper recently. It was like they did it on purpose.

Look at this:

1988 Grand Marquis:

2009 Mercury Grand Marquis:

Notice it looks stripped and not as luxurious as the 1988 even though it is a loaded LS?

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Maybe we've fallen back into Henry Ford's famous "any color as long as it's black" sort of mentality.

He actually thought it would be a good thing if the model T never changed and everyone drove a black one.

Ugh, so depressing.

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I've been down most of the day. This was not the news I was wanting to hear, especially after I had high hopes for a rejuvinated Mercury with Euro products.

Why on earth would anyone expect Mercury to get Euro products?

Ford is going to sell the same Fiesta, Focus, and Mondeo/Fusion in Europe and in North America.

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