In the 1930s, Ford was getting slaughtered in the mid-priced market by the likes of Dodge and Oldsmobile. To save the company, Edsel Ford – the legendary Henry Ford’s son – established the Mercury brand in 1939, serving as a bridge between Ford and its Lincoln luxury division. The idea worked like a charm, as Mercury produced some of the most iconic American classic cars from the 50s to 70s era.
10 – 1969 Mercury Cougar Eliminator
Most people don’t include the Mercury Cougar in their list of the greatest classic muscle cars, but it fully deserves to be included. Introduced in 1967, the Cougar had everything muscle car fans love – a Mustang-based design, a mighty V8 under the hood, and fantastic driving dynamics. The Cougar was so good that it received the 1967 Motor Trend Car of the Year award.
Following the successful launch of the Cougar, Mercury introduced several trims, with the highest-performing one being the 1969 Eliminator. This car came with a 4.9-liter V8 – the same engine in the Mustang Boss 302 – producing 290 horsepower, making it a joy to drive.
9 – 1950 Mercury Coupe
The Mercury Eight is one of the first cars Mercury built in the early 40s. However, it wasn’t until 1950 that Mercury gave it the redesign that earned it a spot on this list. The 1950 Eight was based on the 1949 Ford, but had a distinctive design and a bigger Flathead V8 than the Ford.
Available as a sedan, coupe, convertible, or two-door station wagon, the Eight quickly became popular in hot rod circles and even had songs written about it. It’s also one of the most popular movie cars featured in James Dean’s 1955 film Rebel Without A Cause.
We all love a bit of nostalgia, don’t we? Especially if it is a classic from the yesteryears. And every automobile lover has their own favorite classic car. Some adore the likes of Ferrari P4/5 for its rarity while others are admirers of the likes of GTO 250 purely because of the moolah they generate in today’s times.
Almost every big automobile company boasts a super-rich legacy in terms of classic cars. And so is the case with Ford. The American multinational automaker produced a bunch of timeless classics back in the day. And one of its classics was the Mercury Eight – a part of Ford’s Mercury brand that was established to bridge the price gap between Ford and Lincoln models. While the Mercury Eight enjoyed a successful 13-year reign, it is the 1949 Mercury Custom that gets us nostalgic.
Here’s more about the ’49 Mercury from Rebel Without A Cause and where it is now…
The Mercury Eight line was brought forth by Ford’s now-defunct Mercury division; however, the nameplate tasted sweet success between 1939 and 1951. In 1955, the world mourned the death of the rising star James Dean in an automobile accident. Naturally, when the movie Rebel Without A Cause was released just a month after his demise, it became an instant hit. And James Dean was mourned even more after his acting skills made it apparent that he could have been the next big thing in Hollywood.
Since time cannot be turned back or altered, we can’t say. Perhaps it was a bit of both, further compounded by Dean’s untimely death. Either way, his 1949 Mercury became a huge hit and has carried on being a classic hot rodder to date.
Mercury was a division of the Ford Motors Company established in 1938 by Edsel Ford. Originally created to be the mid-range luxury section of Ford manufactured cars, Mercury cars were, for over fifty years, some of the nicest cars available on the US market. Mercury cars from the 1950s to the 1970s were sometimes better than Ford and Chevy vehicles.
10Awesome: 1950 Mercury Eight
The Mercury Eight was one of the first Mercury built. Following World War 2, Ford redesigned the Eight in order to increase sales. Available as a sedan, coupe, convertible, and station wagon, the Mercury Eight was released as an attempt by Ford to attract a market segment located between the ultra-luxurious Lincoln cars and middle-class Ford cars.