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2007 Mercury Montego

Overview
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2007 Mercury Montego Review

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The Montego is Mercury's newest family sedan. Although the Grand Marquis is still the king of the hill at Mercury, the Montego is arguably the better sedan. Based on the same platform as the Ford Five Hundred, the Montego offers a bit more style and personality than its Ford twin, a helpful advantage in a segment crowded with worthy competitors. With a larger rear seat and a larger trunk than the full-size Grand Marquis, the Montego seems the more logical of the two. The Montego offers a frugal six-cylinder engine, as opposed to the Grand Marquis' V8, as well as the option of all-wheel drive and a revolutionary continuously variable automatic transmission.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you like the tall seating position afforded by an SUV, you'll appreciate the Montego's seats that make for easy entry and exit as well as provide an excellent view of the road. Anyone who drives frequently on wet or slippery pavement would be well-advised to consider the all-wheel-drive version.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you've never experienced a continuously variable transmission (CVT), the lack of gear changes can be disconcerting. Relatively tame, squared-off styling may convey an image of older buyers, in contrast to the youth-oriented nature of many of today's newer models.

What's New for 2007

Traction control becomes standard equipment on all models. Later in the model year front-seat side-impact and front and rear head-curtain airbags become standard.

Driving the Montego
Driving Impressions

Not much is different between the Montego and Ford's Five Hundred, except that the all-wheel-drive Mercury feels just a bit heavier, with slightly greater steering effort. Occupants enjoy a comfortable...

... ride from the relatively taut suspension, which means some bumps are noteworthy while others are taken in stride. On the expressways, the Montego might be a hair more sure-footed and confident. Entry and exit are exceptionally easy, and visibility is great. Operation of the continuously variable transmission is flawless - wholly adequate when starting off, and seldom troubled when passing. Driving ease is another bonus. Engine noise is notable only under full-throttle acceleration.

Continuously Variable Transmission (All-Wheel Drive Only)
Some critics have been displeased by CVT performance. Once you get used to the absence of conventional gears, though, the CVT's blissful smoothness shines through. Only tradition-minded drivers who are uncomfortable without the feel of shifting gears are likely to pay much heed.

All-Wheel-Drive Availability
There's little evidence of the all-wheel-drive's presence, but it's nice to know the system is ready for action. All-wheel drive can transmit up to 100 percent of engine output to the rear wheels when necessary, though it normally drives the front wheels.

2007 Mercury Montego Details
Interior

Prospects for the Montego appreciate utility, so the roomy interior seats five in comfort, with space to spare for all but the person in the center of the rear seat. In fact, Mercury claims "class-leading interior dimensions" along with a "natural" upright seating position, which is akin to that promised by today's SUVs. Two-toned interiors feature separate chrome-ringed gauges, as well as a leather-wrapped steering-wheel rim and shift knob. Ample glass area and a low cowl help visibility. Plenty of luggage fits into the trunk, which holds 21 cubic feet of cargo. To carry bulky objects, the front passenger seat folds flat.

Exterior

Ford designers weren't hunting for sensuous shapes when they developed the Montego and its cousin, the Ford Five Hundred. Both models are likely to appeal to practical-minded buyers who appreciate comfort and convenience and don't need to make an assertive fashion statement. Styling is on the upright side, led by a familiar-looking vertical-bar "waterfall" grille. High intensity discharge (HID) headlamps and LED taillights help make the Montego a sensible choice. A fully independent suspension helps deliver a satisfying ride, which Mercury claims is in the European mode. Luxury sedans ride on 17-inch wheels, while the Premier edition gets 18-inch alloy wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Without even looking at the option list, buyers of either Montego trim level get a well-equipped vehicle. Keyless entry, an alarm, manual air conditioning, power mirrors, traction control, front side-impact airbags, front and rear side-curtain airbags, a six-way power driver's seat, a CD player and anti-lock brakes (ABS) are included with each model. The upscale Premier sedan adds 18-inch wheels, leather upholstery, heated power mirrors, adjustable pedals, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated seats and a six-disc CD changer. Ford's continuously variable transmission (CVT) is available only for all-wheel-drive models. The front-wheel-drive Montego employs a conventional six-speed automatic.

Optional Equipment

Because the standard equipment list is so complete, only a handful of options are available, including a power moonroof, reverse sensing system, 18-inch wheels, SIRIUS Satellite radio, GPS navigation and rear-seat DVD entertainment system.

Under the Hood

The Montego employs a revised 3.0-liter Duratec engine designed to be quieter and more fuel-efficient while delivering decent power for acceleration and passing. The CVT automatic makes the most of this engine's torque, but is available only on the all-wheel-drive models. Fuel economy is more than respectable for a vehicle of this size.

3.0-liter V6
203 horsepower @ 5750 rpm
207 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/29 (FWD), 19/25 (AWD)

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