Mercury Monterey

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Mercury Monterey
1971MONTEREYFRONT.JPG
Overview
ManufacturerFord Motor Company
Production1952–1974
AssemblySt. Louis, Missouri
Body and chassis
ClassFull-size
Body style4-door sedan
2-door coupe
LayoutFR layout
Chronology
PredecessorMercury Eight
SuccessorMercury Marquis
 
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Mercury Monterey
1971MONTEREYFRONT.JPG
Overview
ManufacturerFord Motor Company
Production1952–1974
AssemblySt. Louis, Missouri
Body and chassis
ClassFull-size
Body style4-door sedan
2-door coupe
LayoutFR layout
Chronology
PredecessorMercury Eight
SuccessorMercury Marquis

The Mercury Monterey is a full-size car model introduced by the Mercury division of the Ford Motor Company in 1952. It would later share the same body style with the slightly more upscale Marquis, and the Park Lane and Montclair until the latter two were extinguished after the 1968 model year. The Marquis-Monterey body was, built on a longer wheelbase and had a longer body than the Ford LTD, Ford Galaxie, and Ford Custom. During its production the car served as the high-end, mid-range, and entry-level fullsize Mercury at various times throughout its run. It was the only Mercury to be in continuous production throughout the 1960s.[1] The Monterey was discontinued after 1974.

In 2004, Mercury resurrected the Monterey nameplate for a minivan, essentially a re-badged Ford Freestar with added features and modified cosmetic details.

Early History[edit]

The Monterey (model 72C) was introduced in 1950 as a high-end two-door coupe as part of the Mercury Eight series in the same vein as the Ford Crestliner, the Lincoln Lido coupe and the Lincoln Cosmopolitan Capri coupe in order to compete with the hardtop coupes General Motors had introduced the previous model year. Montereys had either a canvas covered top for $2146 or vinyl for $2157. Standard features included leather faced seats, simulated leather headliner, wool carpets, chrome-plated interior garnish moldings, two-toned dashboard, special black steering wheel, fender skirts, dual outside rearview mirrors, full wheelcovers & gold winged hood ornament. For $10 more all leather seats were an option. Two special colors were offered, Turquoise Blue with dark blue top and Cortaro Red metallic with black top. Black with yellow top was also available. Few Montereys were sold.

1952–1954[edit]

1953 Mercury Monterey coupe
First generation
1953 Mercury Convertible.jpg
Overview
Model years1952–1954
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
4-door station wagon
RelatedMercury Custom
Powertrain
Engine255 cu in (4.2 L) Flathead V8
256 cu in (4.2 L) Ford Y-block V8
Transmission3-speed manual[2]
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic[3]
Dimensions
Wheelbase118.0 in (2,997 mm)[2]
Length202.2 in (5,136 mm) (1952)
1953 Mercury Monterey station wagon
1954 Mercury Monterey Sun Valley

Mercury got a styling and engineering redesign for 1952, such at 18% more window area.[2][4] Monterey became a separate series and Mercury's top model line, a convertible and four-door sedan were included in the new series lineup. The heater and vent controls were changed to levers and placed on a plane set perpendicular to the dash behind the steering wheel.[5] A station wagon bowed for 1953, the same year a Siren Red Monterey Convertible became Ford's forty-millionth car produced.[6] 1954 saw the introduction of the new 161 hp (120 kW) overhead valve Ford Y-block V8, as well as the bubble-top Monterey Sun Valley, which had a Plexiglas front half roof which was similar to that of the Ford Crestline Skyliner.[2] The 1954 Montereys also received other alterations, such as new, lower taillights.

1955–1956[edit]

1956 Mercury Monterey 4-door hardtop
Second generation
Mercury Monteray 1956.jpg
Overview
Model years1955–1956
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
4-door station wagon
RelatedMercury Custom
Mercury Medalist
Powertrain
Engine292 cu in (4.8 L) Ford Y-block V8
312 cu in (5.1 L) Ford Y-block V8
Transmission3-speed manual[2]
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase118.0 in (2,997 mm)[2]
Length206.3 in (5,240 mm)[7]

For 1955 the car lost its status as Mercury's top model, replaced by the Montclair. The same year, it gained the 292 cu in (4.8 L) Y-block from the Thunderbird, producing 188 hp (140 kW) with the standard transmission or 198 with the Merc-O-Matic.[8] It used independent ball-joint front suspension.[9] Brake size was increased.[10]

1956 brought another new engine, the 235 hp (175 kW) 312 cu. in.[8] This year, along with the rest of Ford, Mercury cars started to sport the Lifeguard safety equipment.[11] The deep-dish steering wheel and safety door locks were standard.[11]

1957–1958[edit]

1957 Mercury Monterey coupe
Third generation
Mercury Convertible 1957.jpg
Overview
Model years1957–1958
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
RelatedMercury Turnpike Cruiser
Mercury Montclair
Mercury Colony Park
Mercury Voyager
Mercury Commuter
Powertrain
Engine312 cu in (5.1 L) Ford Y-block V8
368 cu in (6.0 L) Lincoln Y-Block V8
383 cu in (6.3 L) MEL V8
430 cu in (7.0 L) MEL V8
Transmission3-speed manual
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase122.0 in (3,099 mm)
Length211.1 in (5,362 mm)[2]
1958 mercury Monterey

The fullsize Mercury was redesigned for 1957 and grew considerably larger as well, riding on an exclusive 122 in (3,099 mm) wheelbase. A new frame design allowed a lower floor which made the car look lower and longer. The station wagons were divested from the Monterey series, with the Commuter, Voyager, and Colony Park lines. The 312 Ford Y-block gained 20 horsepower to go with the added weight, and the 290 hp (220 kW) 368 cu in (6.0 L) Lincoln Y-block V8 became an option.[8]

1958 brought quad headlamps, as well as an all-new engine: the 383 cu in (6.3 L) MEL V8. With the new engine came the Multi-Drive three-speed automatic transmission.[12]

1959–1960[edit]

1959 Mercury Monterey
Fourth generation
MHV Mercury Monterey 1960 01.jpg
Overview
Model years1959–1960
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
RelatedMercury Park Lane
Mercury Montclair
Mercury Colony Park
Mercury Commuter
Mercury Voyager
Powertrain
Engine312 cu in (5.1 L) Ford Y-block V8
383 cu in (6.3 L) MEL V8
430 cu in (7.0 L) MEL V8
Transmission3-speed manual
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase126.0 in (3,200 mm)
Length1959: 217.8 in (5,532 mm)
1960: 219.2 in (5,568 mm)
1960 Mercury Monterey convertible rear

With the discontinuation of the low-price Medalist after the 1956 model year and a trend towards fuel economy, the 1959 Monterey returned to the 312, with 210 hp (160 kW).[12]

1961–1964[edit]

1963 Mercury Monterey
Fifth generation
1962 Mercury Monterey Sedan.jpg
Overview
Model years1961–1964
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
4-door station wagon
RelatedMercury Meteor
Mercury Colony Park
Mercury Commuter
Ford Galaxie
Ford Country Squire
Powertrain
Engine223 cu in (3.7 L) Mileage Maker I6
292 cu in (4.8 L) Ford Y-block V8
352 cu in (5.8 L) FE V8
390 cu in (6.4 L) FE V8
406 cu in (6.7 L) FE V8
Transmission3-speed manual
4-speed manual
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic[13]
Dimensions
Wheelbase120.0 in (3,050 mm)
1962 Mercury Monterey convertible interior

Mercury's full-size offerings were completely revamped for 1961. Bodies, interiors, and chassis were basically the same as the big Ford's, although trim was different to distinquish the marques. The Montclair and Park Lane were discontinued and the Meteor was added at the bottom of the range, making Monterey once again the top of Mercury's lineup. The 292 cu in (4.8 L) Ford Y-block was standard, with 352 cu in (5.8 L) and 390 cu in (6.4 L) versions of the FE V8 available.[14]

The Meteor nameplate was moved to a new intermediate line for 1962, so the Monterey 6 with a 135 hp (101 kW) 223 cu in (3.7 L) Mileage Maker straight-six was added to fill the gap, but only for this year.[14]

1963 brought the return of the "Breezeway" window, a powered reverse slanted rear window, first used on the Mercury Turnpike Cruiser and the 1958-60 Lincoln Continental. It also brought a 406 cu in (6.7 L) FE engine. The six-cylinder, and 292 and 352 V8s were dropped and the 390 V8 became the standard engine with 250 horsepower and two-barrel carburetor with a 300-horsepower four-barrel version optional. At mid-year, the fastback Marauder was introduced.[1] Mid-1963 saw the introduction of the "Marauder," basically the 1963 1/2 Ford Sports Hardtop "fastback" roofline adapted to the Mercury body. A performance "S-55" package included a big-block 300-bhp 390 V8 and a sporty interior that was similar to the Ford Galaxie 500/XL.

Monterey became the entry-level full-size Mercury again for 1964, with the return of the Montclair and Park Lane. Grilles and taillights were restyled and toned down a bit, making this model especially attractive, a big car but not bulky-looking. The 406 was replaced by the 427 cu in (7.0 L) version, producing 410 hp (310 kW) standard with an option for 425 hp (317 kW).[1] The Marauder fastback hardtop continued to be offered in all three Mercury series.

1965–1968[edit]

1966 Mercury Monterey convertible
Sixth generation
RedMercuryMonterey2.jpg
Overview
Model years1965–1968
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
RelatedMercury Park Lane
Mercury Montclair
Mercury Colony Park
Mercury Commuter
Ford Galaxie
Ford LTD
Ford Country Squire
Powertrain
Engine390 cu in (6.4 L) FE V8
410 cu in (6.7 L) FE V8
427 cu in (7.0 L) FE V8
428 cu in (7.0 L) FE V8
Transmission3-speed manual
4-speed manual
3-speed Merc-O-Matic automatic
3-speed C6 automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase123.0 in (3,120 mm)
1966 Mercury Monterey convertible rear

The full-size Mercurys were redesigned for 1965 with a new torque-box frame and a more slab-sided look. The Breezeway window was now only available on pillared sedans, with all two door hardtops being fastbacks.

The Mercury-exclusive 410 cu in (6.7 L) and the 428 cu in (7.0 L) FE engines were added for 1966.

1967 brought a refresh, and the vertical Breezeway roofline disappeared although they could still be had with a drop-down rear window. The 410 was dropped for 1968.[1]

1969–1974[edit]

1971 Mercury Monterey rear
Seventh generation
72-74 Mercury Monterey.jpg
Overview
Model years1969–1974
Body and chassis
Body style4-door sedan
4-door hardtop
2-door hardtop
2-door convertible
4-door station wagon
RelatedMercury Marquis
Mercury Colony Park
Ford LTD
Ford Galaxie
Ford Country Squire
Powertrain
Engine390 cu in (6.4 L) FE V8
400 cu in (6.6 L) Cleveland V8
429 cu in (7.0 L) 385-series V8
460 cu in (7.5 L) 385-series V8
Transmission3-speed manual
4-speed manual
3-speed C6 automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase124.0 in (3,150 mm)

For 1969, the Monterey's wheelbase grew to 124 inches (315 cm) inches with the exception of the station wagon which was on the 122 inches (309.9 cm) Ford wheelbase - it was essentially a Ford wagon with a Mercury front clip and trimwork. The redesigned Mercurys were intended to emulate the Lincoln Continental. Minor changes differentiated the 1970 models, but a restyle for 1971 resulted in rounded and more flowing bodywork, beaked grilles, flipper exterior doorhandles, frameless windows on all sedans, wider c-pillars and fender skirts on all but the base Monterey and wagons. The convertible bodystyle for both the Monterey and the Marquis was eliminated and replaced by the new, costly and very rare optional power moonroof which was first made available on a Mercury with the 1968 Cougar. 1972 brought minor changes to Monterey and Marquis, such as eggcrate grilles and a front seatbelt warning buzzer. Also, SelectShift Cruise-O-Matic transmission, power steering and power front disc brakes became standard equipment on all Monterey models for 1972.

The 351 Windsor and 400 cu in (6.6 L) Cleveland V8s were added for 1971, the final year for the 390. The 429 V8, which was standard on the Marquis beginning in 1969, was available as an extra cost option on all Monterey models each year including a two-barrel 320-horsepower version and a four-barrel 360-horsepower option from 1969 to 1971. Both of those 429s were replaced by single 209 net horsepower 429 four-barrel for 1972, which was designed to run on regular, low lead or unleaded gasoline as was the case with all Ford Motor Company engines starting with the 1972 model year.

The 1973 redesign brought boxier styling and the federally mandated 5 mph bumpers. The Monterey and Monterey Custom were discontinued in 1975, as the Grand Marquis had been introduced as the new top-line Mercury, shifting the lesser Marquis models down to take the Monterey's place.

Engine offerings for 1973-74 included the 351 Windsor two-barrel standard on base Montereys and the 400 Cleveland two-barrel standard on Monterey Custom and optional on base models. The 429 V8 was discontinued after 1973 and Lincoln's 460 V8 became the top option on all models for 1974.

Approximately 7,850,000 full-size Fords and Mercurys were sold over 1969-78.[15][16] This makes it the second best selling Ford automobile platform after the Ford Model T.

The Monterey in Canada[edit]

After 1963, the Monterey was not sold in Canada, but was supplanted by the resurrected Meteor. Meteor competed in the low-priced field, but its upper trim series (Montcalm and LeMoyne) was typically very similar to the U.S. Monterey both in styling and appointments. Meteor continued as a separate marque through 1976 (1975-76 models continued the 1974 Monterey's front end styling) after which the name was applied to a base trim version of the Marquis, as the "Mercury Marquis Meteor" through 1981.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Full-Size Mercury Cars of the 1960s". How Mercury Cars Work. HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved 2008-12-03. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Flory, Jr., J. "Kelly" (2008). American Cars, 1946-1959 Every Model Every Year. McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers. ISBN 978-0-7864-3229-5. 
  3. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1952 Mercury/1952 Mercury Prestige Brochure". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  4. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1952 Mercury/1952 Mercury Prestige Brochure". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2013-03-01. 
  5. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1952 Mercury/1952 Mercury Prestige Brochure". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  6. ^ Flory, J. "Kelly", Jr. American Cars 1946-1959 (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Coy, 2008), p.515.
  7. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1955 Mercury/album". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  8. ^ a b c Consumer Guide. "1955, 1956, 1957 Mercury Cars". How Mercury Cars Work. HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  9. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1955 Mercury/album". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2012-08-17. 
  10. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1955 Mercury/album". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2012-08-17. 
  11. ^ a b "Directory Index: Mercury/1956 Mercury/album 002". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2012-08-17. 
  12. ^ a b Consumer Guide. "1958, 1959 Mercurys". How Mercury Cars Work. HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  13. ^ "Directory Index: Mercury/1964 Mercury/1964 Mercury Full Size Brochure". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2011-11-20. 
  14. ^ a b Consumer Guide. "The 1960s: More Mercury Models, Fewer Buyers". How Mercury Cars Work. HowStuffWorks.com. Retrieved 2008-12-09. 
  15. ^ Kowalke, Ron (1997). Standard Catalog of American Cars 1946–1975. Krause publications. ISBN 0-87341-521-3. 
  16. ^ Flammang, James Standard Catalog of American Cars 1976–1999 3rd Edition (Iola, WI: Krause Publications, Inc 1999)

External links[edit]