The Mercury Montego resurrects a classic nameplate from the Mercury division. The Montego was originally launched as a replacement for the Mercury Sable and shares its basic body structure and powertrain with the Ford Five Hundred and previous generation Volvo S80. Available is a Haldex all-wheel-drive (AWD) system adapted from the Volvo XC90SUV. Ford designed the Montego and Five Hundred with ex-SUV owners in mind, creating chair-height seating to give the impression of a higher driving position, a feature many customers noted as a reason for purchasing an SUV. The Montego is assembled along with the Five Hundred in Ford's Chicago Illinois plant.
2007 will be the last year for the Mercury Montego due to declining sales and unknown nameplate, Its replacement will be the 2008 Mercury Sable.
The NHTSA has conducted crash tests of the 2007 Montego. Its full scores are available at safercar.gov.
Although the test car lacked the now standard side airbags, the Montego earned 5 stars in both side impact categories. Rollover data for the AWD Montego is unavailable from the NHTSA. However, the mechanically identical Ford Five Hundred AWD earned 4 Stars on the rollover test.
"Inside is where the Montego shines..." — New Car Test Drive
"Voluminous trunk can hold eight full-size golf bags." — Consumer Guide
"Good balance in turns, with only moderate lean, despite relatively tall body." - Consumer Guide
"The interior has 107.5 cubic feet of passenger space, which is huge - especially when you consider that the exterior of the car is almost the same size as most of the popular midsize sedans." — Cars.com
"We do expect that eventual owners will wish for a little extra midrange torque for passing at highway speeds and climbing grades, particularly when carrying a full load of family members and luggage (we had neither with us during our brief test-drive)." — Edmunds.com
"...The Montego turned out a bit bland..." — MSN Autos
"There is no soul to the Montego." — Los Angeles Times
"The faux wood-grain trim looks like it came off a prison lunch tray." - Los Angeles Times
Available powertrains consist of a 3.0L Duratec 30 V6 engine, and the choice of a continuously variable transmission or six-speed automatic transmission, and either front-wheel drive or the same Haldex all-wheel drive system used in the Volvo XC90. A 3.5L V6 was to be added for 2008 but Mercury will cease production of the Montego this summer.
The Montego was designed to provide large car interior volume with manageable outside dimensions, while delivering good fuel economy. Its design is also notably tall for a sedan, giving drivers an SUV or minivan-like command of the road. Its trunk, one of the largest on the market, can hold 8 full-sized loaded golf bags. The Montego was first introduced at the 2004 Chicago Auto Show.
Befitting its Volvo roots, the Montego has garnered class leading results in crash tests conducted by the IIHS as well as NHTSA.
The Montego began production on Monday July 12, 2004 in Chicago, Illinois and became available to the public in September 2004. Although criticized by the automotive press for its bland styling in comparison to that of its competitor the Buick Lucerne, the Montego has not been a great success for Mercury just selling over 2,000 units on a good month. For 2008 Mercury has decided to replace the Montego with the all new 2008 Mercury Sable.
The Montego replaced the intermediate Mercury Comet in 1968 and was replaced by an upsized Mercury Cougar for the 1977 model year. It was essentially a twin of the Ford Torino. The Cyclone was a high performance variant of the Montego through 1971.
Fords CEO Alan Mulally said that he has decided to scrap the Mercury Montego and Ford Five Hundred namplates. Due to declining sales and he also thought that their names where to forgettable with their core audience the Montego will be replaced with the 2008 Mercury Sable and the Five Hundred will be replaced with the 2008 Ford Taurus. But the Mercury Montego's Spirit will live on in the 2008 Mercury Sable.