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Things have been kept simple in this relatively novel realm of hybrid SUVs. For now there is but one trim level of Mariner Hybrid, the 4WD, a wonderful vehicle that is sporty and capable while efficient.
The green factor is provided by a gas engine/electric motor combo. The electric motor provides the power up to 25 mph, when the gasoline engine takes over. While the gas engine runs it simultaneously recharges the battery for the electric motor. Together they produce the power of 155 horses.
Mercury's Intelligent 4WD is a sophisticated system that constantly monitors traction at each wheel (5000 times per second, says the manufacturer) and then communicates how much additional torque is needed in the rear wheels to control slip (this car-based SUV operates on 2WD). It's nice to let it do the thinking for you while you keep your mind on other matters of driving.
For instance, while you're watching the road you may be thinking about how you're doing your part to help reduce'America's dependence on foreign oil, how you're helping Mother Nature, and how you're saving money at the pump. What you can look for from your Mariner Hybrid is 32 city miles to the gallon and 29 on the highway.
The Regenerative Braking System is another technological marvel. It recycles kinetic energy by transferring it to the battery pack for recharging purposes when the brakes are. Impressive!
Mercury rewards its Hybrid buyers with some nice amenities. The driver gets a six-way power-adjustable seat and a leather-wrapped wheel, and every passenger gets to enjoy the Audiophile Sound System with an in-dash changer. There are also carpeted floor mats, a message center, and power locks, windows, and side mirrors. Aesthetic and practical bonuses include chrome door handles, body-color protective cladding, roof rails, and 16-inch spoked aluminum wheels.
Load up your smart purchase by adding some options. Technophiles will love the Hybrid Energy Audio & Navigation System, which comes with a premium audio system, turn-by-turn navigation capability, hybrid energy flow display, and real-time fuel economy display. The Safety Package adds front seat-mounted airbags and side-curtain units with rollover sensors. The Premium Package adds both of the aforementioned packages plus heated (front) leather seats, heated side mirrors, a cargo-area cover, and an obstacle-sensing parking aid.
Visibility to other drivers is maximized thanks to fog lights and side repeater lamps. The Mariner Hybrid as security features, too, including a remote keyless entry and an entry keypad on the driver's door.