1992 Mercury Grand Marquis

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1992 Mercury Grand Marquis
Available in 2 styles:  Grand Marquis 4dr Sedan shown
Asking Price Range
$312–$6,272
Estimated MPG

Information Coming Soon

Expert Reviews

    Expert Reviews 1 of 2

By 

chicagotribune.com
The Mercury Grand Marquis was in danger of being called the Mercury Grand Methuselah.

Unlike the fashion industry, where change comes with every season, the auto industry trots out new finery only every three to six years. The Grand Marquis has been an exception to the rule and has remained virtually the same since 1979.

The long-awaited remake has taken place. The Grand Marquis is now a fashionably decked-out rounded cylinder that shares the same aerodynamic styling heritage as the Mercury Sable, Cougar and even the Continental. No longer does the Grand Marquis look out of place in a Mercury showroom.

It must look pretty good to consumers judging by the fact Grand Marquis sales in the Chicago market rose 13 percent in April from a year earlier, and that`s all retail sales and not fleet.

The Grand Marquis and its sister car, the Ford Crown Victoria (Cartalk, March 3), have undergone a sheet metal transformation. Though they share the rounded aero look, the rooflines and window treatments differ sharply from one another. Also, the Grand Marquis doesn`t have a hood ornament and the Crown Vic has a floating ``Ford`` oval in the nose.

The new Grand Marquis is so different from the old one it replaces that it has been dubbed a 1992 model. In keeping with the industry trend of late, the new Grand Marquis is bigger than its predecessor, though ever so slightly. Wheelbase has grown by a fractional 0.1 inch, to 114.4 inches, and length was stretched almost 2 inches, to 212.5 inches.

Notable in the surgery performed was the replacement of the 5-liter, 150- horsepower V-8 with Ford`s 4.6-liter, 190-h.p. V-8, the engine powering the Lincoln Town Car. The 4.6 is teamed with a quiet 4-speed automatic transmission. Despite the increased horsepower, there`s a slight improvement in fuel economy-to 18 miles per gallon city/25 m.p.g. highway from the 17/24 rating with the 5-liter V-8.

In addition to picking up that extra m.p.g., you`ll notice the difference in the engine when moving from the stoplight or pulling into the passing lane: The car responds much more quickly to pedal pressure.

Traction control also plays a role in the sure-footed starts of the Grand Marquis. Just as antilock brakes prevent wheel lockup when stopping, traction control prevents wheel slippage when accelerating on dry or wet surfaces. Traction control relieves any fears people might have about a rear-wheel-drive car`s ability to perform in poor weather. Fishtailing should be but a memory.

With ABS and traction control, you can stop or start on ice or packed snow. The Grand Marquis offers both in an optional package that runs $1,035. That`s a hefty price for the ability to travel safely regardless of road surface, but then what price do you put on yourself and the family?

An added safety device is the standard driver`s side air bag. A passenger-side bag is supposed to be add ed soon. Traction control and ABS should keep you from having to experience the bag.

Another plus is the safety-belt system. Too often you secure the lap/ shoulder harness and the shoulder strap scrapes your neck or cheek. About the only way to feel comfortable is to release the belt, which, of course, defeats the purpose of being tied down. The Grand Marquis belt system is adjustable. All you need do is slide the plastic holder in the roof pillar up or down to move the shoulder belt higher or lower across your torso, preventing face or neck scraping. It`s a great idea that`s now in the Grand Marquis, Crown Victoria and Acura Legend.

Speed-sensitive power steering, the livelier 4.6 V-8 and a redesigned suspension system with gas pressurized shocks and front and rear stabilizer bars contribute to the improved performance as well as better ride and handling without the severe floating and sway experienced in the predecessor model.

Though the `92 Grand Mar quis holds the road better than the `91, you`ll notice a difference between the road manners on a Grand Marquis versus the sister Crown Vic. The Marquis is a little softer and looser sprung over the tar marks in the road than the stiffer Crown Vic.

Too bad the seats weren`t a bit softer, too. The cloth-covered seats seemed to provide little give or cushion. If the suspension system is designed to reduce road harshness fed back into the passenger compartment, the seats should help complete the job.

Another gripe is the rear seat. There`s so much head and arm room for occupants in back you wonder why leg room got shortchanged. It`s too bad Grand Marquis` two extra inches weren`t devoted to rear-seat leg room rather than to an already spacious trunk.

On the plus side, all instruments and controls are within easy sight and use, especially the rear window defroster button, which is in the center of the dash. That`s a bonus for this climate: The back glass can cloud up at least nine months a year and many cars make you hunt to find the defrost button.

Another nice touch is the placement of the remote fuel filler door button in the driver`s door under the armrest. That makes it far easier to use than stumbling around under the seat to find a latch or reaching over in search of the button in the glove box. With such attention to detail, it`s too bad the car doesn`t come with you-know-what holders.

The Grand Marquisis offered in GS and upgraded LS versions. We test drove the LS, which starts at $19,789.

Standard equipment includes power brakes and steering, 15-inch all-season steel-belted radial tires, air conditioning, tinted glass, tilt wheel, intermittent wipers, AM/FM stereo, digital clock, power windows and mirrors and wide bodyside moldings.

The test car included a preferred equipment package that ran $2,199 and offered cruise control, front and rear carpeted mats, power door locks, power driver`s seat, rear window defroster, illuminated entry system, leather wrapped wheel, cornering lamps, bodyside paint stripe, power radio antenna, and cassette with the stereo.

In keeping with the Grand Marquis luxury image, we would expect some of those preferred equipment options to be standard, such as cruise control, rear window defroster and carpeted mats. That $19,789 is a good chunk of change and a few more standard goodies wouldn`t be unreasonable.

The test car also included keyless entry for $137, rear air suspension for $285, electronic group (instrumentation, trip minder computer, automatic temperature control) for $516, power passenger seat at $489, upgraded radio for $335and a conventional spare tire for $85. The sticker read $25,405 before a $650 discount on the options that brought the price to $24,755.

>> 1992 Mercury Grand Marquis LS Wheel base: 114.4 inches Length: 212.5 inches Engine: 4.6 liter, 190 h.p. V-8 Transmission: 4-speed automatic Fuel economy: 18 m.p.g. city/25 m.p.g. highway Base price: $19,789 Strong point: Long overdue styling update. Thirst for fuel quenched. Smooth ride and handling. ABS and driver air bag standard. Weak point: Stiff bench seat. No ``you know what`` holders. >>


    Expert Reviews 1 of 2

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