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2011 Mercury Grand Marquis Overview
Mercury’s Grand Marquis, essentially unchanged since the last millennium, soldiers on, at least through 2011. This grandfatherly six-passenger full-size sedan long ago saw its halcyon days, yet remains – for the moment – a staple in the livery and taxi realms. Its roomy cabin, capacious trunk (nearly 21 cubic feet), staid, if not quite supple, ride, and placid demeanor relegate it to picking up passengers at airports and hotels, or the occasional trip to corporate headquarters if the Town Car is in the shop. Rumored to be phased out in 2012, this venerable tank is still available only in a rear-wheel drive (RWD) configuration, still carries a now-underachieving V8 powerplant, and remains mired in the four-speed-automatic past. Only Chevy’s V6-powered Impala can claim a similarly anachronistic image, yet it boasts nearly the same horsepower as and better mileage figures than the Grand Marquis. Additionally, Chrysler’s 300, Toyota’s Avalon, Hyundai’s Genesis, and Ford’s Taurus sedans are worth a look before deciding on the MGM.
The 2011 Grand Marquis continues to be powered by a 4.6-liter Flex Fuel V8 managed by a graybeard four-speed automatic transmission. Apparently, the capability to burn E85 ethanol fuel is Mercury’s only cession to upgrading this weary powerplant. In any case, all those cylinders put out only 224 hp, while a respectable 275 lb-ft of torque mean that it’ll pull 1,500 pounds of trailer, should the spacious trunk prove inadequate to hold all the souvenirs from a world cruise. EPA-estimated mileage figures are a dismal 16/24 mpg, though claims have been made that horse-and-buggy speeds on the highway will marginally increase fuel efficiency.
Appearance amenities and creature comforts in the 2011 Grand Marquis, while not quite so numerous as in its Town Car stablemate, are up to the task of ferrying passengers to and from cruise terminals, train stations, and airports. Such standard features as a self-leveling suspension with ride-control adjustment and 17-inch painted alloy wheels complement cabin amenities like leather upholstery, power-adjustable front bench seats, digital keypad door locks, power windows and heated outside mirrors, steering-wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls, overhead console, tilt-adjustable steering wheel, dual-zone climate control, simulated wood and genuine leather cabin and dash trim accents, and a single-CD player with four speakers. Options are severely limited, with only 17-inch aluminum wheels, leather and Burl wood steering wheel, heated seats, and a cassette deck available.
The 2011 Grand Marquis is a large, heavy vehicle, thus its safety scores remain solid. Additionally, four-wheel disc ABS, traction control, dual front side-mounted airbags with head protection chambers, front fog/driving lights, cornering headlights, and a post-collision safety system further contribute to passenger safety and security.
Among owner gripes concerning the 2010 Grand Marquis, cupholder placement seems to outrank anemic power and dated styling, though both those others remain high on the list of complaints. Poor mileage figures, a lack of options packages, illogical placement of many controls and buttons, and the difficulty in finding battleship-size parking spots also contribute to owner discontent. On the positive side, however, cabin space, luggage capacity, decent safety scores, and a quiet, stately ride are notable advantages for owners of this vintage automobile.
Have Laptop, Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.