By KBB.com Editors
At Mercury, nameplates come and go (remember the Villager, Topaz and Cougar?), but one name has withstood the test of time for over 30 years: The Grand Marquis. Mercury's luxury cruiser shares a common platform with the Ford Crown Victoria and, to a lesser degree, the Lincoln Town Car. If you seek a full-size, rear-wheel drive, V8-powered American road car with room for six passengers, the Grand Marquis is probably your best bet. Its Mercury bloodline gives it a more upscale appearance than the Crown Victoria, yet its price tag stays far south of the Town Car. The Grand Marquis' huge trunk is exactly what many golfers love about this car; that and its pillow-soft ride, wide and comfortable seats and easy-to-understand dash layout.You'll Like This Car If...
If you've been drooling over the Lincoln Town Car, but it's just too expensive, try taking a spin in a Grand Marquis. Six-passenger seating is a highlight, and the trunk is huge.You May Not Like This Car If...
The Grand Marquis is a big car with a long hood and a big rear deck, and it can be difficult to maneuver in tight spaces. The rear-wheel-drive layout is not as desirable as front-wheel drive when it comes to getting around in rain and snow.What's Significant About This Car?
The Grand Marquis line is simplified to just two trim levels: GS and LS. A special Palm Beach Edition will be available on LS trims, as will three new two-tone color options.Driving It Driving Impressions
The Grand Marquis' velvet-smooth V8 provides excellent pulling power in the form of strong low-end torque, making it terrific for easy, effortless driving. The LS model is available with a Handling package that includes dual exhaust, which increases the horsepower to 239 and the torque to 287 pound-feet at 4100 rpm. The Grand Marquis' electronically controlled four-speed automatic delivers smooth, quick shifts, and its overdrive gear allows the full-sized Grand Marquis to earn an EPA highway estimate of 25-miles per gallon -- far better than most similarly-powered SUVs.Favorite Features
The Grand Marquis' wide body allows for spacious front seats with dual armrests.
Optional Handling Package
The optional Handling Package adds another 15 horsepower to the standard 4.6-liter V8.
The Grand Marquis' interior includes revised door and dash panels, high-back seats with dual armrests and seating for six (although, in all honesty, five is a more realistic figure). Overhead, an available convenient console displays outside temperature, time and a compass. In the dash you'll find automatic controls for the air conditioning and headlamps. Palm Beach Edition cars feature standard side-impact airbags, satin appliques on the dash and door panels and the Palm Beach logo adorning the dash and embroidered on the cashmere leather seats. Although the Grand Marquis' trunk is huge by most standards, the lack of a rear-seat pass through means cargo cannot exceed the compartment's 20.6 cubic-foot capacity.Exterior
Though basically a clone of the Crown Victoria, the Grand Marquis gets a flashier grille and tail lamp treatment that leans more toward the Lincoln family than Ford's. Except for a few inches here and there and some luxury features, there is not a huge difference between the Lincoln Town Car and the Grand Marquis. The long hood and rear deck will put even the best parallel parking expert to the test; ironically, the one feature that would be most helpful on this giant -- rear park assist -- is not available. The driver's door external keypad is a convenient feature, allowing access without needing to carry the keys.Notable Standard Equipment
The Grand Marquis is offered in two trims: GS and LS. The GS includes air conditioning with air filtration, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), rear defroster, power locks, heated power mirrors, power windows, illuminated entry, AM/FM stereo with CD, eight-way power driver's seat with lumbar support, cruise control, tilt wheel, keyless entry with driver's door keypad, auto-off headlamps and full wheel covers. The LS adds 16-spoke alloy wheels, heated side mirrors, overhead console, eight-way power passenger seat with lumbar support, traction control, automatic air conditioning, auto-dimming rearview mirror, fold-down rear armrest, rear-seat reading lights, power adjustable pedals and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.Notable Optional Equipment
Options include heated leather seats, six-disc CD changer, front side-impact airbags, power moonroof and a Handling package that adds dual exhaust, rear air-spring suspension and a more powerful version of the standard V8.Under the Hood
The Grand Marquis' big V8 fits this car like a hand-tailored suit. Smooth and powerful, with proven dependability and surprising fuel efficiency, Ford's 4.6-liter modular V8 is the best engine ever to grace a Grand Marquis.
4.6-liter V8 Flex Fuel
224 horsepower @ 4800 rpm
275 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/17 (E85), 17/25 (Gasoline)
The Grand Marquis GS has a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $25,580, while the more luxurious LS starts at $30,235. As changes in market conditions can affect pricing, be sure to check the latest Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are typically paying. In the ever-important world of resale, the Grand Marquis does not hold its value as well as some newer sedans. Over a five-year period, the Grand Marquis is expected to retain less of its value than the Chrysler 300, Nissan Maxima and Toyota Avalon.