When Mercury merged with Ford in 1945, Mercury became Ford’s intermediary brand between the lower-tier Ford brand and the higher-tier Lincoln brand. Mercury was created by a Ford brother, Edsel Ford, to compete with Buick and Oldsmobile. In its early years, Mercury focused on large, high-displacement V8 cars to fill the gaps in the Ford/Lincoln lineups. The Mercury Eight was the first major car for the brand, which sold 65,800 units in the first year. The Mercury Eight would continue to be a popular model through 1952.
Mercury would experience a sales drop-off in the later part of the 1950s. After Ford revisited the Mercury business strategy, they began to reverse the downswing with the introduction of new compact and full-size models. These included the Mercury Comet, Mercury Meteor, and the Mercury S-55. They would then introduce the Mercury Cougar and Mercury Marquis in the later part of the 1960s as an introduction to the muscle segment. The Mercury Cyclone was also added to the line in 1964 as a submodel of the Comet.
In the 1970s, Mercury would change up their brand philosophy yet again, focusing primarily on more large, civilian-focused cruisers. While Mercury’s performance car days were behind them, they still saw moderate success with the Grand Marquis, Mercury Capri, and a few other mid-size vehicles.
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