Mercury Grand Marquis

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Mercury Grand Marquis
03-05 Mercury Grand Marquis .jpg
Overview
Manufacturer Ford Motor Company
Model years 1975–2011
Body and chassis
Class Full-size sedan
Layout FR layout, Body-on-frame
Platform Ford Panther platform
Related Lincoln Town Car
Ford Crown Victoria
Chronology
Predecessor Mercury Marquis

The Mercury Grand Marquis was a full-size rear-wheel drive luxury sedan that was sold by the Lincoln-Mercury division of the Ford Motor Company; the Grand Marquis was the flagship of the Mercury lineup. The nameplate had been in use since 1975 as the premium trim level of the Mercury Marquis; the Grand Marquis became a distinct model in 1983. The car was essentially Mercury's twin of the Ford Crown Victoria with which it shared the Panther platform along with the Lincoln Town Car. After the discontinuation of the Crown Victoria at the end of the 2007 model year, the Grand Marquis had largely taken its place as the entry-level Panther-platform model.

The Grand Marquis was manufactured at the St. Thomas Assembly Plant in Southwold, Ontario, Canada though it was also produced from 1983 to 1985 at Ford's St. Louis, Missouri facility. With the discontinuation of the Mercury brand, the Grand Marquis ended retail production in October 2010 while production for fleet sales continued until January 2011.[1] The last Grand Marquis, which was also the last Mercury ever produced, rolled off the assembly line on January 4, 2011.[2]

1975–1978[edit]

75 78 Mercury Grand Marquis 2door.jpg
1975–1978 Mercury Grand Marquis 2-door
Overview
Model years 1975–1982
Assembly Hazelwood, Missouri (St. Louis Assembly Plant)
Pico Rivera, California (Los Angeles Assembly)
Hapeville, Georgia (Atlanta Assembly)
Body and chassis
Class Full-size car
Body style 2-door hardtop (1975-1978)
2-door sedan (1979-1982)
4-door pillared hardtop (1975-1978)
4-door sedan (1979-1982)
5-door station wagon (1979-1982)
Layout FR layout (body on frame)
Platform Full-size Ford (1975–1978)
Ford Panther platform (1979–1982)
Chronology
Predecessor Mercury Marquis
Successor Mercury Grand Marquis (1983–1991)
1975–1978 Mercury Grand Marquis 4-door pillared hardtop sedan (hidden headlights open)

In 1967, the Marquis nameplate made its first appearance as a two-door hardtop version of the Mercury Monterey; largely the Mercury equivalent of the Ford LTD, the Marquis would serve the replacement for the Park Lane and Montclair as the Monterey became the entry model of the full-size Mercury line in 1969. In 1969, the Marquis would take over the Brougham trim package from the Park Lane.

In 1975, to bridge the gap between the Marquis Brougham and the Lincoln Continental, Mercury introduced the Grand Marquis trim. In 1979, as the Marquis was redesigned and downsized, the Grand Marquis made its return as the top-trim of the full-size Mercury line, its Ford counterpart was the newly introduced Ford LTD Crown Victoria.

First generation (1983–1991)[edit]

First generation
1983 Mercury Grand Marquis LS 2-Door.jpg
1983 Mercury Grand Marquis LS coupe
1985 Grand Marquis LS.JPG
Front seats and interior, 1985, Mercury Grand Marquis LS
Overview
Also called Ford Conquistador (Venezuela, 1984–1989)
Ford Grand Marquis (Mexico)
Model years 1983–1991
987,818 produced
Assembly Canada: St. Thomas, Ontario (St. Thomas Assembly)
United States: Hazelwood, Missouri (St. Louis Assembly Plant)
Venezuela: Barcelona, Anzoátegui (División Industrial Automotriz)
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door sedan
4-door sedan
5-door station wagon
Related Mercury Colony Park
Ford LTD Crown Victoria
Ford Country Squire
Lincoln Town Car
Powertrain
Engine 4.9 L (302 cu in) 5.0 Windsor V8(1983–1991)
5.8 L (351 cu in) Windsor V8 (1986–1991)
Transmission 4-speed AOD automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 114.3 in (2,903 mm)
Length 210.3 in (5,342 mm)
Width 77.5 in (1,968 mm)

The Grand Marquis was introduced as a model in its own right in 1983, as Ford Motor Company split up its full-size and mid-size model lines for both Ford and Lincoln-Mercury. For Mercury, the Marquis nameplate became its entry on the mid-size Fox platform, replacing the sedan and wagon versions of the Cougar (as that car reverted to its traditional role as personal-luxury coupe); the similar Zephyr was replaced by the all-new front-wheel drive Topaz. Remaining the flagship sedan of the Mercury lineup, the Grand Marquis now was left as the sole full-size sedan of the division (for the first time since 1951).

Based upon the Panther platform, the Grand Marquis was the counterpart of the Ford LTD Crown Victoria. As with its Ford counterpart, a padded vinyl half-roof was standard equipment. While the LTD Crown Victoria was distinguished by a "crowning" metal band surrounding the B-pillars, which was first introduced in 1955 on the Crown Victoria, the Grand Marquis had opera lamps similar to the Lincoln Town Car; higher-trim versions also had the option of a "frenched" rear window. The Grand Marquis was available in two-door sedan and four-door sedan body styles in standard and LS trim (replacing Brougham, which became part of the mid-size Marquis line). As part of the model shift, the Colony Park station wagon became part of the Grand Marquis line; a non-woodgrain Grand Marquis was available as well (for 1983 only). Most versions of the Colony Park would wear Grand Marquis LS badging and trim.

Year-by-year changes[edit]

1983–1987 Mercury Grand Marquis sedan
1988-1989 Grand Marquis GS
1989 Grand Marquis GS, rear left
  • 1983: Grand Marquis becomes a stand-alone model and sole full-size Mercury sedan. 5.0L V8 gains fuel injection. Minor revisions include a new grille, taillights, steering wheel, and interior trim changes.[3]
  • 1984: Non-woodgrain Grand Marquis wagon discontinued, leaving Colony Park as only full-size Mercury wagon. Ford breaks even on its investment on the Panther redesign during the model year; each Grand Marquis is now sold at a profit.[3]
  • 1985: To make room for the Ford Aerostar, production shifted from St. Louis to St. Thomas Assembly in Canada. Gas-charged shocks become standard, with rear air suspension as a newly available option.

As part of the change in production, several revisions were made. The horn is moved to the steering wheel, the dash is refitted for a single-DIN radio (conversely, the 8-track player and CB Radio are removed from the option list), and as they were standard features, the "Electronic Fuel Injection" and "Automatic Overdrive" emblems were deleted.[3]

  • 1986: Introduced as a running change late in the 1985 model year, a CHMSL/third brake light was added to all versions of the Grand Marquis (and all American-market cars).
  • 1987: The dash received updated trim; on the instrument panel, the "Check Oil" warning light is replaced by a "Check Engine" light.[3] This is the final year for Grand Marquis two-doors, with 4,904 produced.[4]
  • 1988: Mid-cycle redesign for the Grand Marquis. All sheetmetal forward of the windshield and from the rear window to the back bumper is revised, with softer lines for (slightly) improved aerodynamics. New badging brought the Grand Marquis closer in line with the rest of the Mercury lineup. In place of serif-style script, block lettering (in the style of the Sable and Topaz) made its appearance on the trunklid. The Mercury "flying M" badge made its appearance for the first time on the Grand Marquis. The interior received enlarged head restraints with a tilt feature, and a refresh of the dash, as one wood trim piece, along with the instrument cluster itself being revised.

In line with the rest of the Mercury lineup, the base-trim model was rebadged GS alongside the top-trim LS. LS versions received options such as a JBL Audio 6-speaker AM/FM/Cassette stereo system with a power antenna. Other LS options included rear air suspension, vinyl top with a "frenched" rear window, and a heated windshield.

  • 1989: Largely carryover from 1988, with the instrument panel receiving a "Check Engine" light on all models.[3]
  • 1990: Several revisions were made to improve safety features.[5] On all models, a drivers' side airbag was added, necessitating a redesign of the dashboard (and the deletion of the dashboard-mounted stereo speakers). Now shared with the LTD Crown Victoria, the instrument panel of the Grand Marquis traded its Lincoln-style square dials for a horizontal strip-style speedometer. Redesigned front seats were given downsized head restraints, while outboard passengers on the rear seat were given three-point seatbelts.
  • 1991: Last year for the first-generation Grand Marquis; redesigned 1992 model in early 1991. Final Grand Marquis produced with the 5.0L and 5.8L engines, and the final Colony Park wagons (3,104 produced).[4]


Powertrain[edit]

1983-1987 Grand Marquis LS 4-door, rear view

The 5.0L (302 cu in) 5.0 Windsor V8 was the sole engine available from model years 1983–1985. In 1986, the engine was converted from throttle-body to sequential multi-port fuel injection. These engines are easily distinguished by their cast aluminum upper intake manifolds with horizontal throttle body (vertical throttle plate); this replaced the traditional throttle body with a carburetor-style top-mounted air cleaner previously used. Additionally in 1986, the 5.8L Windsor V8 was returned to the Grand Marquis/Colony Park engine lineup. By the end of production in 1991, versions ordered with the 5.8L would be the final carbureted vehicles ever sold in North America by Ford.

Both engines were coupled to the four-speed AOD overdrive automatic transmission.

Livery use[edit]

Limousine manufacturers used the Mercury Grand Marquis as a cheaper alternative to the mechanically similar Lincoln Town Car. These were more popular in Latin America than in the United States. In the 1989 James Bond movie Licence to Kill, the villain Franz Sanchez drives a black 1985 Grand Marquis Limousine. This limousine was black with a red interior.

Production Figures[4]
Year 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 Total production
Units 95,718 131,396 147,139 98,929 120,503 111,611 130,248 72,945 79,329 987,818


Second generation (1992–1997)[edit]

Second generation
1994 mercury grand marquis ls.jpg
1994 Grand Marquis LS
Vfd car.jpg
Digital instrument panel (1992–1994)
Overview
Also called Ford Grand Marquis (Mexico)
Model years 1992–1997
Assembly Canada: St. Thomas, Ontario (St. Thomas Assembly)
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Related Ford Crown Victoria
Ford Police Interceptor
Lincoln Town Car
Powertrain
Engine 4.6 L Modular V8
Transmission 4-speed AOD automatic
4-speed AOD-E automatic
4-speed 4R70W automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 114.4 in (2,906 mm)
Length 212.4 in (5,395 mm) (1992–94)
211.8 in (5,380 mm) (1995–97)
Width 77.8 in (1,976 mm) (1992–94)
78.0 in (1,981 mm) (1995–97)
Height 56.8 in (1,443 mm)

For the 1992 model year, both Ford and Mercury Panther-platform cars underwent their most extensive changes since their 1979 introduction. While the chassis was retained, the body was all-new from the ground up. After thirteen years on the market, the full-size sedans from Mercury and Ford were struggling against far more modern competition. Additionally, as unintentional consequence of over 30 years of badge engineering, the Grand Marquis and its LTD Crown Victoria counterpart were left as virtual identical twins. In a significant break from precedent, the Grand Marquis and Ford Crown Victoria (no longer an LTD model) were allowed completely different bodies; the only visually shared body parts were the front doors and the windshield.

In line with the rest of Ford Motor Company vehicles sold in North America, aerodynamics and fuel economy played a large role in the design of the new Grand Marquis. Unlike the Crown Victoria, which followed the design themes of the Ford Taurus, the Grand Marquis would combine contemporary design with traditional styling features seen in full-size sedans such as full-width taillights, a formal roofline, and a chrome waterfall grille. In various forms, the latter would become a signature styling feature across the Mercury product line from the late 1990s onward.

As part of the redesign, Ford sought a new type of buyer for its full-size Mercury sedan; instead of the older buyers who traditionally bought them, the 1992 Grand Marquis was marketed to younger buyers in need of a larger car than a Ford Taurus/Mercury Sable.[6] As such, the opera lamps and padded vinyl top were discontinued (the latter becoming a dealer-installed option); the imitation wire wheel covers were replaced by aluminum alloy wheels. Revisions to the suspension and steering were made to improve both ride and handling.[6] To improve stopping, four-wheel disc brakes replaced the rear drum brakes, with ABS as standard; traction control was available as an option.

As with the 1988-1991 models, the Grand Marquis was available in base-trim GS and deluxe-trim LS models; LS models are distinguished by front cornering lamps. From 1992 onward, the Grand Marquis was produced solely as a four-door sedan, as the Colony Park station wagon was discontinued.

Year-to-Year Changes[edit]

1992 Grand Marquis LS
1997 Grand Marquis LS
  • 1992: Second-generation Grand Marquis introduced in the spring of 1991 as an early 1992 model.[6] All models come with drivers'-side airbag standard with an optional airbag.
  • 1993: Dual airbags become standard equipment on all models. Radios are redesigned with a new control layout.
  • 1994: Increased side door impact protection. A/C refrigerant changed from R-12 to R-134a.
  • 1995: Mid-cycle redesign. Exterior trim features increased use of body-color trim and less chrome. On the front, a larger, rounder grille is better integrated to the body, while all lights on the front are changed to clear lenses. The license plate is now centered in between the taillamps. On the trunklid, the Mercury and Grand Marquis lettering is italicized and reduced in size.

Inside, much of the interior receives an update, with new seats, door panels, and the entire dashboard is redesigned with attention paid to ergonomics. Switching locations with the climate controls, a Double-DIN radio featured large buttons and knobs; on models without automatic climate controls, rotary knobs replaced sliding controls. The power seat controls, if specified, were now located on the door panels along with enlarged buttons for the power windows and door locks. The outdated horizontal speedometer was replaced by instrument cluster used in the Crown Victoria (adding a voltmeter and oil-pressure gauge); a digital instrument panel with trip computer was still an option.

  • 1996: No major changes. Inside, the Ford "brick" airbag wheel in use since 1990 was replaced with a new design shared with many Ford and Lincoln-Mercury cars, integrating the horn into a smaller steering wheel hub.
  • 1997: Last year for the second-generation Grand Marquis. The Mercury emblems are removed from the C-pillars. Following the discontinuation of the Chevrolet Caprice and Buick Roadmaster by General Motors, 1997 Grand Marquis sales would rise over 20% in comparison to 1996.

Powertrain[edit]

1995–97 Mercury Grand Marquis (with dealer-installed vinyl roof)

While the Panther platform was carried over from 1991, an all-new engine would be used for the 1992 Grand Marquis. The replacement for the OHV 5.0L and 5.8L Windsor V8s, the 4.6L SOHC Modular V8 engine was the first (and as of 2014, the only) overhead-cam V8 to appear in an American-market full-size sedan. Producing 190 hp, it was more powerful and more fuel-efficient than both of its predecessors. An optional handling package, including a heavy-duty suspension, 3.27 rear-axle (instead of 2.73), and a dual-exhaust system that raised engine output to 210 hp was an option; it was largely the counterpart to the Ford Crown Victoria Touring Sedan.

All models of the Grand Marquis were coupled to a 4-speed automatic transmission. For 1993, the hydraulically-controlled AOD transmission was replaced by the electronically-controlled AOD-E transmission.[5] In 1995, the AOD-E was replaced the heavier-duty 4R70W transmission;[5] it was shared with the Lincoln Mark VII and Town Car.

Production[edit]

While the redesigned 1992 Grand Marquis/Crown Victoria would prove more fuel efficient than their predecessors, a loophole in CAFE regulations allowed Ford Motor Company to sell both full-size cars and improve the average economy of all of its cars. CAFE regulations require vehicles with fewer than 75% domestic parts content to be counted as part of an automaker's imported fleet rather than a domestic one. During the 1991 retooling for production of 1992 models at its St. Thomas, Ontario facility, Ford switched a number of its parts suppliers from Canada and the United States to suppliers outside North America, bringing the domestic parts content of the Grand Marquis and Crown Victoria below 75%.[7] As such, the Grand Marquis was now part of a fleet consisting primarily of the far more fuel-efficient Ford Festiva rather than other V8-engined cars such as the Cougar and Ford Mustang.

Production Figures[8]
Year 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 Total production
Units 163,262 90,367 107,894 94,202 104,433 127,949 688,107


Third generation (1998–2002)[edit]

Third generation
1998-2002 Mercury Grand Marquis -- 09-27-2010 1.jpg
Overview
Also called Ford Grand Marquis (Mexico)
Model years 1998–2002
Assembly Canada: St. Thomas, Ontario (St. Thomas Assembly)
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Related Ford Crown Victoria
Ford Police Interceptor
Lincoln Town Car
Powertrain
Engine 4.6 L Modular V8
Transmission 4-speed 4R70W automatic
4-speed 4R75E automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 114.7 in (2,913 mm)
Length 211.9 in (5,382 mm)
Width 78.2 in (1,986 mm)
Height 56.8 in (1,443 mm)

The Grand Marquis was redesigned for 1998, with a new front and rear fascia, grille, hood, bumpers, wheels, lights, and mirrors.[5] Although it bore a resemblance to the 1992–1997 model, the only body panels retained were the doors and the roof. It also got some small interior changes, and more optional features. Unlike the previous generation, Ford's Panther-platform cars no longer received direct competition from General Motors (the Chevrolet Caprice and Buick Roadmaster were dropped after 1996); until 2002, Mercury brought in close to or over 100,000 Grand Marquis sales. The Crown Victoria and Grand Marquis together sold over 200,000 a year, giving Ford a profitable market niche to itself.[9]

Mechanical Details

A fail-safe cooling system with a dual speed electric fan was put in place, along with a coil-on-plug ignition system. Larger dual piston brake calipers were added to the front, requiring 16 inch wheels to be standard.[5] A Watt's linkage was added to the rear suspension. Fuel lines were moved to the passenger side frame rail. A coded ignition key (known as Passive Anti-Theft System, or "PATS") system was introduced and a 72 amp/hour battery replaced the previous 58. Other minor changes included a redesigned engine cover and the power steering fluid reservoir being moved to the front of the engine.[5]

For 1998 to 2000, the 4.6 L SOHC V8 single exhaust had 200 hp with a 2.73 rear axle ratio. The 4.6 L SOHC V8 dual exhaust had 215 hp and came with a 3.27 or 3:55 rear axle ratio and handling suspension.

For 2001 to 2002, the 4.6 L SOHC V8 single exhaust had 220 hp with a 2.73 rear axle ratio. The 4.6 L SOHC V8 dual exhaust had 235 hp and came with a 3.27 or 3:55 rear axle ratio and handling suspension.

Introduced in the Spring of 2001, the Grand Marquis LSE had rear air suspension, the higher rear axle ratio and the dual exhaust 4.6 L engine.

Interior view, front seats
Production Figures[8]
Year 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 Total production
Units 134,155 142,372 132,870 100,774 96,034 606,206


Fourth generation (2003–2011)[edit]

Fourth generation
2005 Mercury Grand Marquis 30th Anniversary Edition -- 06-02-2011.jpg
2005 Mercury Grand Marquis (30th Anniversary Edition)
2011 Mercury Grand Marquis interior.jpg
View of front seats and dashboard, 2011 Mercury Grand Marquis LS Ultimate Edition
Overview
Also called Ford Grand Marquis (Mexico)
Production 2002-January 4, 2011
Model years 2003–2011
Assembly Canada: St. Thomas, Ontario (St. Thomas Assembly)
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Related Mercury Marauder
Ford Crown Victoria
Ford Police Interceptor
Lincoln Town Car
Powertrain
Engine 4.6 L Modular V8
Transmission 4-speed 4R70W automatic(2003–2005)
4-speed 4R75E automatic (2006–2011)
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2003–2008: 114.7 in (2,913 mm)
2009–2011: 114.6 in (2,911 mm) 120.7 in (3,066 mm)(Long wheelbase)
Length 211.9 in (5,382 mm) (1998–2005)
212.0 in (5,385 mm) (2006–2011) 220.0 in (5,588 mm)(Long wheelbase)
Width 78.2 in (1,986 mm) (1998–2008)
78.3 in (1,989 mm) (2009–2011)
Height 56.8 in (1,443 mm) (1998–2008)
56.3 in (1,430 mm) (2009–2011)
Curb weight 4,118–4,137 pounds (1,868–1,877 kg)
2003-2005 Grand Marquis GS

After five years relatively unchanged, the Grand Marquis saw a major update for the 2003 model year. The Panther chassis would see its largest redesign since its 1979 introduction, while the body itself would see a number of evolutionary changes to modernize its exterior. The heavily rounded bumpers seen since 1992 gave way to a squared-off lower look. Up front, a larger grille wore the same vertical pattern seen on the rest of the Mercury sedan line; larger headlight clusters were shared with the Marauder. In the rear, the rear trunklid fascia is updated as well; while the Crown Victoria and Marauder have body-color trim in between the taillamps, the Grand Marquis is distinguished by red and chrome trim between its taillamps.

Inside, the interior was updated, with new door panels, door handles, and switchgear and an optional overhead console (standard on the LS Series). On GS-trim models, the B-pillars were now painted body-color. Side airbags were also made available and a dual media (cassette/CD) player made standard. A shoulder belt was added for the rear middle passenger and a valet key was made standard.[5]

As part of the redesign, Mercury would change the trim lineup. In place of the traditional two-model line, the Grand Marquis was expanded to five. In addition to the base-trim GS, there was now GS Convenience, LS Premium, LS Ultimate, and LSE. Introduced at the Chicago Auto Show in February 2001, and in show rooms by May, the LSE was designated as the LS Premium with a heavy-duty rear suspension, shorter rear-axle ratio, and a 239-hp dual-exhaust engine; it offered 5-passenger seating with leather, dual power bucket seats, with a center console and floor shifter. Sadly, this model was discontinued by late December 2002. The LSE was revived briefly in 2005. From 2003–05 a "Limited Edition" version of the LS model was sold. The Limited Edition included an appearance package that featured chromed mirrors, body colored door handles, and a two-tone leather interior. Limited Edition models also came with side airbags standard.

While technically a separate model, the return of the Mercury Marauder gave the division two versions of the Panther platform for the first time since 1991 and was the first time since 1974 since Mercury sold two full-size sedans. In 2005, the Mercury Montego was introduced as a second Mercury full-size sedan.

Year-by-year changes[edit]

2006 Grand Marquis GS
Rear view, Grand Marquis LS at 2006 Washington Auto Show.
View of instrument panel, 2006-2011 model
  • 2003: Coinciding with massive update to Ford Panther platform, the Grand Marquis is given an exterior styling update. Changes to the interior are less extensive, with new door panels and updated switchgear. To keep up with the preferences of younger buyers, a dual-media sound system (featuring both a cassette tape and CD player) was made standard along with features such as a valet key.[5] Safety features were updated, with the addition of a 3-point seatbelt for the rear center seat and side airbags as an option.

As a means of differentiating the two trims, GS-trim versions now wore body-color B-pillars (similar to the Crown Victoria). LS-trim models gained an overhead console as an option. For LS Premium models was the Limited Edition option. It featured chrome sideview mirrors, body-color door handles, and a two-tone leather interior; side airbags came as standard equipment. For the first time since 1991, the Grand Marquis was available with a hood ornament (the Mercury "flying M") and factory two-tone paint.

  • 2004:
  • 2005: Several minor mechanical changes are made. Introduction of electronic throttle control moves the cruise control function to the main computer. Steering column replaced with a non-locking design,[5] a new two-spoke steering wheel replaces the one used since 1998. Occupant weight sensors were added to the front seats, allowing the driver to disable the passenger airbag. Outside, the radio antenna is moved out of the rear window and to a mast on the rear fender. An Audiophile 6-disc in-dash CD changer became available as an option on LS-trim models.
  • 2006: Mid-cycle facelift; the last styling update to the Grand Marquis. The rounded grilles seen since 1992 are replaced by a rectangular grille with fewer vertical bars. In the rear, the trunk panel between the taillights was changed from red to gray. Fog lights become an option for the very first time. The radio antenna is moved back into the rear window. The LSE trim designation is dropped, although the handling package itself remains an option. Inside, a redesigned instrument panel adds a tachometer for the first time; the optional digital instrument cluster seen since 1992 is discontinued, as is the use of an analog odometer. Gauges are now standard black analog with white numbering and a central information display between the speedometer and tachometer takes the place of the previously-optional Driver's Information Center. Chrome wire wheel covers are also discontinued as an option.
  • 2007: The Grand Marquis gains flex-fuel capability (E85). A full-size spare tire is added as an option along with an auto dimming rear view mirror.

For LS models, a Palm Beach trim option is added; it consisted primarily of special upholstery and badging.

  • 2008: With the Crown Victoria moved exclusively to fleet sales, the Grand Marquis was left with no distinct competition within Ford Motor Company for the first time. In Canada, the Grand Marquis (branded as a Ford since 1999) and the Ford Five Hundred were both replaced by the newly reintroduced Ford Taurus.

For 2008, the Handling and Performance Package as well as the 5-passenger front bucket-seat option were both discontinued; both were similar to the Crown Victoria's LX Premium Sport and Handling Package. These were the only post-1992 Grand Marquis variants produced for North America to be equipped with dual exhaust.[clarification needed]

  • 2009: In order to meet federal safety regulations, side-impact airbags are made standard in all models and window switches are replaced by a recessed design. To bolster the sales of other Mercury models, many Lincoln-Mercury dealers in the United States begin to institute a "No stock" rule in effect for the Grand Marquis.

The trim line underwent a revision. The base-trim GS was dropped from the U.S. lineup (remaining on long-wheelbase Middle East export models) while the LS was split into two models: LS Fleet and LS Retail. The former was available exclusively for fleet purchase in the United States while the latter was available only by dealer special order; to minimize inventory, incentives as high as $4000 per vehicle were added to remove previous stock from dealer lots.

  • 2010: 2010 marked the 35th year of Grand Marquis production, overtaking the Cougar as the longest-produced Mercury. Due to a government mandate, the VIN designations were changed for 2010, replacing the seventh character with a letter instead of a number.[10] The Grand Marquis LS now carried an M7F designation, whilst the export-only GS carried an M7E designation.
  • 2011: As part of the discontinuation of the Mercury brand, 2011 versions of the Grand Marquis are produced as Ultimate Editions. A short production run of retail versions is produced, with production ending in September 2010. Subsequent production is committed exclusively to fleet models. Although slated to end production in December 2010, a parts shortage at the St. Thomas delays the end of production to January 2011. On January 4, 2011, the last Grand Marquis is produced in St. Thomas; it is the very last Mercury produced by Ford.

Chassis Details[edit]

2010-2011 Mercury Grand Marquis LS at the 2011 Washington Auto Show. This car is converted to run on propane(LPG).

While the exterior changes to the 2003 Grand Marquis were evolutionary, the changes to the Panther platform were far more extensive. To improve chassis rigidity, an all-new frame was introduced with fully boxed and hydroformed frame rails. In an effort to improve handling, the front and rear suspension were redesigned along with the brakes. A quiet EBD brake booster with a mechanical panic assist system was added. The new suspension changes required changing wheel designs to those with a high positive offset. Rack and pinion steering replaced the old recirculating ball system in an effort to increase steering precision and reduce costs. In standard versions of the Grand Marquis, the rear-axle ratio was 2.73:1; in LSE and versions with the handling suspension, a 3.27:1 rear-axle ratio was used. The handling package was standard equipment on LS-trim export models.

Engine[edit]

For the 2003 model year, the Grand Marquis retained the version of the Modular V8 introduced in 2001. Single-exhaust versions produced 220 hp, while the dual-exhaust version raised output to 235 hp. During the redesign, a number of changes were made to the engine. The oil pan was enlarged 20% to six quarts and an engine knock sensor was made standard. Other changes included an intake manifold with aluminum water crossover and an electronic returnless fuel system. The new engine was distinguished by a redesigned engine cover, featuring a chrome "V8" emblem; the oil filler cap was moved to the passenger-side valve cover and the power steering fluid reservoir was moved off of the engine block onto the radiator surround.

For 2006, revisions to engine tuning added 4 hp to both versions of the Modular V8, for a total of 224 and 239 hp, respectively. After the 2007 model year, the 239 hp version of the Grand Marquis was sold exclusively for GCC export.

Transmission[edit]

All versions of the Grand Marquis were sold with a 4-speed automatic transmission. From 2003 to 2005, the 4R70W was used. In 2006, it was replaced by the 4R75E shared with the Ford truck lineup.[5]

Sales[edit]

Production Figures[8]
Year 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010[11] 2011[12] Total Production
Units 92,140 87,583 66,133 54,688 50,664 29,766 24,783 28,543 248 434,548


Discontinuation[edit]

On June 2, 2010, Ford announced that it would end production of all Mercury vehicles by the end of 2010 as it discontinued the brand after 72 years. As a result of an unplanned delay in parts shipments, the final Grand Marquis was produced on January 4, 2011 at 7:46 am.[2] The St. Thomas Assembly plant in Ontario, Canada closed in September 2011, bringing an end to the production of the Ford Crown Victoria and Lincoln Town Car.

In continuous production for 36 years, the Grand Marquis was the longest-produced Mercury. In total, nearly 2.7 million were produced, making it the best-selling vehicle sold by the brand.[13] Among Ford Motor Company models in North America, only the Ford Econoline, Ford Mustang, Ford Thunderbird, Ford F-Series, and Lincoln Continental nameplates have been produced longer. The Panther platform served as the basis for Grand Marquis design for 32 years. Nearly unmatched by other automakers for longevity, the external appearance of the Grand Marquis remained largely unchanged for the last 19 years of its production life (along with its engine, the 2011 model shared a number of body panels with its 1992 counterpart).

Production Totals (1983-2009)
Year 1983-1991 1992–1997 1998–2002 2003–2009 Total production
Units 987,818 688,107 606,206 405,757 2,687,888

Export markets[edit]

During its production, the Grand Marquis was sold throughout North America, although it was not always badged as a Mercury. Outside of North America, exports were concentrated on the Middle Eastern market, where its large size and V8 power were attributes still sought by buyers towards the end of production.

Canada[edit]

In Canada, the Mercury brand was phased out in 2004. After the demise of its short-lived Mercury Marauder twin in 2004, the Grand Marquis was the last remaining Mercury vehicle sold in Canada. The Grand Marquis replaced the civilian version of the Crown Victoria, which was now sold exclusively to commercial fleets and law enforcement in Canada (as a Police Interceptor). Sales continued until the 2011 model year, when the Ford Taurus became the next full-size Ford.

Mexico[edit]

The Grand Marquis was sold in Mexico from 1982 to 1984, and from 1992 to 2004 as a Ford, it replaced the Ford LTD Crown Victoria, and became a great success in sales and prestige as the most luxorious and expensive car available for sale. It was available as a 2 and 4 door sedan, as well as the Country Squire station wagon, besides the different brands, it was unchenged from the US version. The Grand Marquis was discontinued after 1984 since the sales of vehicles with 8 cylinder engines became prohibited in Mexico, being replaced by the Ford Cougar.

From its reintroduction in 1992, the Grand Marquis kept the Mercury badge on the front grille (and in the rear, besides, until 1998 sports the Ford Blue Oval badge located upper in the right of the trunk lid, from 1998 this badge was centered replacing the rear Mercury logo). It was replaced for the 2005 model year by the Mercury Montego, due to slowing sales attributed to the sedan's size.

Although the revived Montego was intended to invigorate full-size Mercury sales, it was dropped after the 2007 model year due to lack of sales.[citation needed]

Middle East (GCC)[edit]

Middle Eastern 2003 Grand Marquis LS, equipped with the Export Handling Package featuring '03–'05 LSE wheels
GCC-spec 2003 Grand Marquis LS

The Grand Marquis and its Ford Crown Victoria counterpart were popular sedans in the Middle East, especially in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Vehicles manufactured for this market were known as GCC Spec vehicles, available in all Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. For large car buyers, the Grand Marquis was popular due to its simplicity, reliability and affordability. However, as a result of its age, toward the end of its production life, the export version of the Grand Marquis began to lose market share towards rivals such as the Chevrolet Caprice (imported from Australia) and the Dodge Charger.

Modification[edit]

Rear interior, showing 40/20/40 Lincoln Town Car front seats

All vehicles destined for Middle East export feature the High Ambient Temperature and Speed Package, true dual exhaust (except for the long-wheelbase GSL), a heavy-duty battery, and an auxiliary transmission fluid cooler. In addition, the language of warning labels are in Arabic instead of English (see picture). Since 1998, the GCC-spec Grand Marquis has shared its 40/20/40 front seats with the Lincoln Town Car (as opposed to the 50/50 split-bench of the Crown Victoria/Grand Marquis); due to the warm climate, cloth seats are standard equipment (with leather as an option). Vehicles manufactured prior to 2002 also featured a catalytic converter delete option.

As a handling upgrade, the GCC-spec Grand Marquis was available with an Export Handling Package option. Similar to its North American counterpart, it consisted of rear air suspension, stiffer springs, larger front stabilizer bar, and a heavy-duty rear stabilizer bar. Unlike its American counterpart, it shared the stock rear-axle ratio (3.08 before 2002 and 2.73 from 2003-2011). The Export Handling Package was available on any standard-wheelbase GCC-spec Grand Marquis and standard on all LS-trim versions; models with the Handling Package featured a rear Mercury Marauder trunklid spoiler and 16" 9-spoke Crown Victoria LX wheels (with Mercury center caps). The LS Premium and LS Ultimate models equipped with the handling package share the same 16" 9-spoke wheels as their LS counterparts. The 9-spoke Crown Victoria LX wheel (with a Mercury center cap) replaced the 2003–2005 LSE wheels with darker inserts for 2006 and 2007.


Trim variation[edit]

C-pillar badging on a 2009 Grand Marquis GSL

Middle Eastern versions of the Grand Marquis are equipped with slightly different options and features than their North American counterparts. Prior to 2009, six different trim levels were available:

  • GS
  • GS Convenience
  • GSL
  • LS (LSE limited to mid-2001 to mid-2003 and 2005 model year)
  • LS Premium
  • LS Ultimate.

In 2009, the LS models were only available with a column shifter and 40/20/40 Lincoln Town Car seats, available in luxury cloth or leather trim. The GSL is a long-wheelbase model offering 152 millimetres (6.0 in) of extra leg room for rear passengers. It is equipped like an LS model, with standard features such as an 8-way power driver's seat (2 way manual passenger seat), side airbags, leather-wrapped steering wheel, automatically dimming rearview mirror, electronic climate control, power-adjustable pedals, premium sound system with CD and cassette, 17" wheels with 235/55WR17 Goodyear Eagle RS-A tires, heated door mirrors, fog lights and special "GSL" badging. The once-optional gauge cluster is standard, with controls located on the centre of the dashboard, between the headunit and climate controls. In North America, this model was only available to fleet customers as a commercial (taxi) version of the Ford Crown Victoria.


For 2009, the Grand Marquis was only available in two different trim levels: GSL and LS, both of which were near identical in terms of features and options. The LS was a Fleet model, which was heavily de-contented, losing once-standard features such as an overhead console with compass and a power passenger seat. The Export Handling Package was dropped, eliminating features such as the Mercury Marauder spoiler and rear air suspension. In Kuwait, the 2009 GSL retailed for KWD 6,500 ($22,000) and a fully equipped LS for KWD 7,500 ($25,425).

For 2010, the GS model reappeared in the line up, and several features (such as the Mercury Marauder spoiler) became available as standalone options. The Export Handling Package was made standard along with a power passenger seat. In Kuwait, the LS model (M7F) was not available to the general public in 2010, as they are heavily sold to fleet buyers, such as the Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Health and state-owned Kuwait Oil Company, where they are given to employees as fringe benefits.

For 2011, the long wheelbase GSL was replaced by the GS, and the LS model was made available again to the general public in Kuwait. The LS Ultimate Edition remains a Fleet model and differs only slightly from the GS, equipped with features such as leather seats, Electronic Automatic Temperature Control (EATC) and an automatically dimming rear-view mirror. Lumbar support was no longer available.


Engine specifications[edit]

Engine Name Years Available Displacement Horsepower Torque
First-generation
Ford 5.0 Windsor V8 1983–1991 4.9 L (302 cu in)
  • 130 hp (97 kW; 132 PS) (1983)[14]
  • 140 hp (104 kW; 142 PS) (1984-1985, US)[15]
  • 155 hp (116 kW; 157 PS) (1984-1985, Canada)[16]
  • 150 hp (112 kW; 152 PS) (1986-1991)[17]
  • 240 lb·ft (330 N·m) (1983)[14]
  • 250 lb·ft (340 N·m) (1984-1985, US)[15]
  • 265 lb·ft (359 N·m) (1984-1985, Canada)[16]
  • 270 lb·ft (370 N·m) (1986-1991)[17]
Ford Windsor V8[18] 1986–1991 5.8 L (351 cu in) 180 hp (134 kW; 182 PS) 285 lb·ft (386 N·m)
Second-Fourth generation
Ford Modular V8 1992–2011 4.6 L (281 cu in)
  • 210 hp (157 kW; 213 PS) (1992–1997; dual exhaust)
  • 215 hp (160 kW; 218 PS) (1998–2000; dual exhaust)
  • 235 hp (175 kW; 238 PS) (2001–2002; dual exhaust)
  • 239 hp (178 kW; 242 PS) (2003–2011; dual exhaust)
  • 270 lb·ft (370 N·m) (1992–1997; dual exhaust)
  • 285 lb·ft (386 N·m) (1998–2000; dual exhaust)
  • 275 lb·ft (373 N·m) (2001–2002; dual exhaust)
  • 282 lb·ft (382 N·m) (2003–2011; dual exhaust)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bowman, Zach (October 4, 2010). "Report: Last Mercury for retail business built on Sunday". Autoblog. Retrieved December 15, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Mercury rolls into history with build of final Grand Marquis". AutoWeek. 2011-01-04. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "The Complete "Box" Panther History". Retrieved 15 April 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c "Box Panther Production Numbers". Retrieved 5 February 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Liquid's Model Year Changes". Retrieved 2007-12-10. 
  6. ^ a b c Popular Mechanics-Automobiles-New Cars-Ford Revitalizes Big Car Lineup. 1991. 
  7. ^ Rules of origin issues related to NAFTA and the North American automotive industry: report to the Committee on Ways and Means, U.S. House of Representatives, on investigation no. 332-314 under section 332 of the Tariff Act of 1930. U.S. International Trade Commission. 1991. p. 47. 
  8. ^ a b c The Encyclopedia of American Cars, 2006 Edition
  9. ^ Leonard M. Apcar (28 September 1997). "BEHIND THE WHEEL/Mercury Grand Marquis; Rear Drive but Refusing to Retire: A Case of Modern Maturity". New York Times. 
  10. ^ "Panther VIN designations changed?". Retrieved 2011-01-18. 
  11. ^ "Ford Motor Company December 2010 US Sales". Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  12. ^ "Ford Motor Company December 2011 US Sales". Retrieved 27 April 2014. 
  13. ^ Factsheet and timeline. media.ford.com
  14. ^ a b http://www.automobile-catalog.com/car/1983/1885520/mercury_grand_marquis_4-door_sedan.html
  15. ^ a b http://www.automobile-catalog.com/car/1984/1886780/mercury_grand_marquis_4-door.html
  16. ^ a b http://www.automobile-catalog.com/car/1984/1886870/mercury_grand_marquis_4-door.html
  17. ^ a b http://www.automobile-catalog.com/car/1986/1889000/mercury_grand_marquis_4-door.html
  18. ^ http://www.automobile-catalog.com/car/1986/1889015/mercury_grand_marquis_4-door_5_8l_v-8_ho.html

External links[edit]