Many feel that an SUV is not truly an SUV if it lacks four-wheel drive. There's a lot of truth in that, since four-wheel drive is a huge factor in the utility.
Mercury's system is called Intelligent Four-Wheel Drive, and its intelligence comes from the sensors it employs at each wheel. These sensors constantly monitor their wheel for signs of slippage and then communicate the need for a change in torque. It's that much more sophisticated than a traditional locking transfer case.
This trim's 3.0-liter V6 puts out 200 horsepower -- not a huge amount for an SUV, although it's adequate for this carlike SUV. Online reviews reflect an opinion that the V6 is peppy from a standstill, but highway passing power is on the weak side.
Fuel economy with this larger engine dips to 20 city/24 highway. Again, it's not terrible for what this vehicle is.
The Luxury name makes you think you're going to be riding in outright comfort, but itÃ¢Â?Â?s all relative. The "luxury" upgrades from the base model are six-way power-adjust on the driverÃ¢Â?Â?s seat and privacy glass; everything else, including leather, must be added. And we're still not talking big-time plushness on these available options, but rather things like auto-on headlamps, visor mirrors with lights, an overhead storage console, a message center, a compass, and an antitheft system, all of which come as part of a Comfort Package of options.
There is also a Trailer Tow package available. With this equipment the Mariner Luxury V6 becomes capable of pulling up to 3500 pounds.
The fully independent suspension lends a nice ride and makes this vehicle nimble and maneuverable, and the power four-wheel disc brakes stop the car smoothly. Some reviews said that the ride is less than great over rougher pavement. Air bags and ABS come standard, and a Dynamic Side-impact Airbag Package lets you add front seat-mounted side-impact airbags and side-curtain units with rollover sensor.