Just acquired a 97 Grand Marquis GS...started out as a chance acquisition through a family friend. Now I am totally sold on this car. I will drive this Mercury for as long as I can get replacement parts I might need.
I would consider buying a newer Mercury full sized rear wheel drive V8, but not a Mustang or one of those other FoMoCo cars with some performance and no room.
But since Ford is unlikely to do that, I will keep this Mercury for as long as I can. I never thought I would end up saying the old geezer saying "they don't make cars like they used to", but that is exactly what the truth is.
I probably won't last long enough to see it, but there will come a day when this car is considered as much of a classic antique as a '40 Ford, fully stock, or a 55 Ford sedan.
FoMoCo should have cut the engineers loose with a good sized budget, to build a performance line like the Marauders and the GM LS/CV PI, and a cruiser/driver type car with lots of room, like the GM GS.
I hope they have enough sense to revive the brand someday, but for now, it is a sad day.
My father had driven lots of good cars, including a couple of top of the line Oldsmobiles, when he got his 55 Mercury station wagon. It was a solid and reliable car that lasted for a long time, much better than the other cars of that era.
I may do a couple of mods such as undersized pulleys, maybe a J-Modded A/T and an A/T cooler, possibly a heavy duty alternator and replace the mechanical fan with a dual electric fan setup from the later CV's, but while all these will make the car a bit better, none of them are necessary to make the car a solid daily driver, as is.
I am glad to have my Mercury, and sad to see the brand gone. I have owned a lot of cars, of many types, over the years, but only a 61 Jaguar MkII 3.8l sedan, complete with wood and leather interior, wire spoke knockoff wheels, etc, came anywhere close to being as great a driving car, smack in the center of the European Grand Touring tradition.
RIP, Mercury, and Long Live Mercury!