In 1938, the American automobile company "Mercury" was founded, which was part of the "Ford" concern. The brand was founded after the son of the founder of the firm, Edsel Ford, conducted a study of the car market in the United States of America, finding that the company did not have mid-range models to compete with the Buick and Oldsmobile brands that were gaining popularity in those years. In addition, the range of classes between budget cars "Ford" and luxury "Lincolns", it was necessary to urgently occupy, and so the brand "Mercury" appeared.
The company's first model, the Mercury 8, was introduced in 1939, just months before the outbreak of World War II. Under the hood of the model is a 95 horsepower eight-cylinder gasoline engine. Thanks to successful sales, as well as sympathy from the government of the United States of America, the Model 8 lasted on the assembly line until 1942, when the entire industry of the country switched to providing the army and the military needs of the Allies. The most popular were ambulances and light compact Mercury buses.
In 1945, an exhausted Ford company embarked on a massive restructuring of the entire production process and model range, which led to the merger of the two brands - Mercury and Lincoln. Mercury engineers immediately started to create a new model, but the work lasted for 4 long years.
The second model, and the first post-war, was presented at the end of 1949. It was the Ford Vedette, which was produced in two versions - a compact one under the Ford brand for the European car market, and a full-size one for sale in the United States of America under the “Mercury” brand. Under the hood of the model was a new generation 4.2-liter power unit, developed by engineers of the Lincoln brand.
In 1950, the Mercury Monterey sedan was introduced, equipped with a Merck-o-Matic automatic gearbox. However, due to many flaws in the suspension design, the second generation of the model was released just two years after the first Monterey was released. The main differences between the updated car are a leather interior made of artificial materials and a hardtop body.
In 1954, the next Mercury model was introduced, called the Sun Valley, which became the world's first car with a panoramic roof. In addition, this model became the first post-war car of the "Ford" concern, equipped with an eight-cylinder power unit. The pinnacle of the evolution of eight-cylinder engines was the release of the Mercury Turnpike Cruiser, equipped with a 290 horsepower engine. And in 1958 one of the most successful Mercury models of that time was presented - the Parc Lane, which had a length of 5.5 meters and an engine from the "Turnpike Cruiser" with a capacity of 306 horsepower. It is noteworthy that the car was equipped with an automatic gearbox with steering wheel control, which made it possible to bring Mercury cars to a new level of luxury again. In addition, after the opening of another automobile division of the Ford concern, named Edsel, in honor of the son of the founder of the company, Henry Ford, the Mercury company began to develop cars for this brand. However, due to low demand for unreasonably expensive Edsel cars, the financial fortune of the Mercury was slightly shaken, but in 1960 a solid profit was made again, thanks, in particular, to the closure of the Edsel brand.
However, in the following years, trends in the US auto market changed dramatically, which led to an increase in demand for compact cars, and a decrease in luxury and powerful models. Ford tried to respond as quickly as possible to these changes by introducing the Comet model under the Mercury brand in 1960, which was a slightly modified Ford Falcon. Under the hood of the model was a six-cylinder 2.3-liter power unit, later upgraded to 4 liters.
In 1967, after a renewed demand for luxury cars, the Mercury Cougar was introduced, equipped with a 335 horsepower V8. However, successful sales lasted only for 3 years, after which the global fuel crisis began, which allowed compact cars of Japanese brands to win a huge share of the United States market. Over the next 10 years, sales of Mercury cars plummeted, especially against the background of stable growth in sales of two other brands of the Ford and Lincoln concern. In addition, management's drive to continually upgrade its powerful eight and six-cylinder engines led the company to bankruptcy, forcing parent company Ford to pay off massive debts to Mercury.
In 1992, after Ford entered into an alliance with the Japanese brand Nissan, which became responsible for the further development of Mercury cars, and received in addition a solid block of shares in the unprofitable brand, the Mercury Villager minivan equipped with a Nissan President chassis was presented. Under the hood was a Ford 3.3-liter 180 horsepower engine, which was paired with a Mercury automatic gearbox. Sales gradually went uphill, and in 1994 the first profit was made, the management of "Ford" began to hope for a better outcome, replenishing the model range of "Mercury" with the Mystic model, which was a modified and improved Ford Mondeo. Also, this model became the first among Mercury cars, which had two engine options at once. Under the hood, at the choice of buyers, there could be a 2 or 2.5-liter power unit with 126 or 173 horsepower, which worked in conjunction with a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic transmission.
A few months later, the luxury sedan Mercury Tracer saw the light - an analogue of the Ford Escort, equipped with an expensive leather interior, an all-wheel drive chassis and a 127 horsepower engine. In addition, since 1995, the model has been available in two body styles - a sedan and a station wagon, and the production of the Mercury Tracer was localized in Japan at the Mazda plant to start sales in the European automotive market. In 1998, the third generation of the Mercury Tracer and the updated Mercury Cougar were released, which was produced as a front-wheel drive three-door coupe with 125 and 170 horsepower engines.
Since 2000, after a major change in the management structure of the "Ford" concern and the acquisition of two new brands - "Volvo" and "Land Rover" - the brand "Mercury" has become a subsidiary of "Lincoln", and the production of more successful cars of the Lincoln brand.
In 2003, the Mercury Montagnier model was introduced, which became a luxury version of the Ford Explorer, one of the most popular SUVs in the American automotive market. Under the hood of the model was a 292 horsepower power unit, which was developed by Lincoln engineers. After that, several more luxury versions of Ford cars were presented, after which the gradual liquidation of the Mercury brand was announced, and the transfer of all employees of the company to Lincoln, which by that time was the largest division of Ford. Thus, the legendary brand "Mercury" ceased to exist in 2010.