With no new vehicles planned, Mercury’s future doesn’t look promising
While FoMoCo executives keep saying that Mercury is a very important brand of the company’s portfolio, dealers are worried mainly because execs have yet to give them a straight answer on future products and future strategy. Well, Ford has shined some light onto what it has planned for future Mercury models. However, with no future vehicles planned or any updates after the 2010 model year, the future for the sluggish brand doesn’t seem very promising.
The Mercury Milan will be updated for the 2009 model year along with the Milan for the 2010 model year. As we all know, Ford has planned a Mercury Milan hybrid for 2010 as well.
Mercury’s Sable model seems to be dying a slow death. Ford will introduced a redesigned and re-engineered Taurus for 2010 but the Sable, which shared the same platform, will not see any changes. According to sources, execs refuse to say whether Sable will receive any changes and the model could die as early as next year.
The Grand Marquis is expected to be phased out early next decade along with the Crown Victoria and Lincoln Town Car. In May, Ford told CAW that it will keep the St.Thomas, Ontiario plant, where the trio are built, open until 2011.
Ford is planning a huge change for the Escape and Escape hybrid. Sources say that Ford will use its European Ford Kuga as the basis for the next-generation Escape. Again, nothing is planned for the Mariner, which is Escape’s Mercury sibling. Ford is expected to drop the Mariner when it updates the Escape in 2012.
Last but not least – the Mercury Mountaineer will most likely be dropped when the next-generation Ford Explorer rolls around. The new unibody Explorer is expected to enter production in 2011. Suppliers and industry sources claim that Mountaineer will end production by 2010.
Well it seems like everything is dying in the Mercury pipeline – so why even debate if the brand will live?
Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)