Posts from ‘Mercury’
In his 2012 book Fractured Times: Culture and Society in the Twentieth Century, historian Eric Hobsbawm noted, “In terms of literary pedigree, the invented cowboy was a late romantic creation. But in terms of social content, he had a double function: he represented the ideal of individualist freedom pushed into a sort of inescapable jail by the closing of the frontier and the coming of the big corporations.”
Whether you drive a car, need a car, or just occasionally bum a ride with friends, you’ve come to the right place. Join the editors of Consumer Guide Automotive as they break down everything that’s going on in the auto world. New-car reviews, shopping tips, driving green, electric cars, classic cars, and plenty of great guests. This is the Consumer Guide Car Stuff Podcast.
If you didn’t think about it too hard, you might have predicted at the time that the 2003 Mercury Marauder would have been a hit with the car-buying public. The car had a lot going for it: a powerful V8, decent handling, cop-car lineage via its Ford Crown Victoria corporate cousin, and stealthy good looks. Plus, the Marauder should have filled the void in muscle-car enthusiasts’ hearts created when the popular V8-powered Chevrolet Impala SS was discontinued in 1996.
Let’s get one thing straight right away: The Chevrolet Monte Carlo WAS a personal-luxury car. I have received at least a dozen emails and instant messages on this issue, mostly from car guys who insist that a personal-luxury car must come from a luxury brand. Not the case. For anyone who would like to spend time learning about the origins of the term, Wikipedia has a nice entry on the topic.
By 1988, light-duty trucks—a category which includes pickups, minivans, and SUVs—accounted for roughly one third of new-vehicle sales. At the time, the popularity of trucks seemed scandalous to many in the automotive media, most whom wagged a stern figure at automakers, warning that a sudden surge in the price of gas would leave dealers with lots full of unsellable product.
If you were a computer nerd, 1975 was a big year for you. Featured on the cover of Popular Electronics magazine, the Altair 8800 made its commercial debut, heralded as the first “micro computer.”
By Frank Peiler
Back in 1956, Ford was preparing for the introduction of their all-new 1957 models, and what an introduction it would be! Not just one line of cars, but two. The large cars were the Fairlane and Fairlane 500, which were built on a 118-inch wheelbase They were available as four-door hardtops and sedans, two-door hardtops and sedans, and a 500 two-door convertible. Later in the model year came the Skyliner retractable-hardtop convertible.
American Graffiti is a classic coming-of-age comedy film that follows its cast through one end-of-summer night in 1962. This was technically the early Sixties, but culturally, 1962 can be considered the end of the Fifties era. Change was coming quickly, both for America itself and the main characters of American Graffiti. The plot of the movie centers around recent high-school graduates Steve Bolander (Ron Howard) and Curt Henderson (Richard Dreyfuss), who are set to enjoy one last night in their hometown before boarding an eastbound flight to college the next morning. Although the era was ending, this movie celebrates the Fifties in full flower.
Among the seemingly countless tragedies and hardships that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought upon the world this year, the upending of the normal American summertime car-show season ranks relatively low on the list. Still, it hurts to have so many car shows, car races, cruise nights, and other automotive gatherings either cancelled outright or postponed.
The bad news is that fewer than one of every hundred cars sold in the United States is a convertible. (I will spare you the fractional math required to pass along the number of manual-transmission-equipped convertibles sold on our shores last year, but it’s fewer still.)