We told you this was going to happen last week, but now it’s official: Ford will drop the Mercury brand in the fourth quarter of this year. The action should come as a surprise to no one, since Mercury brand sales have been on the decline for the past decade. According to Autoblog, Mercury sales currently account for less than one percent of Ford’s overall market share, making them more of an annoyance than a viable brand.
Unlike the death of Pontiac, the demise of Mercury will be mourned by very few enthusiasts, since Mercury hasn’t had a distinctive offering since the Marauder was dropped from the product line in 2004. The brand that brought us the Capri and the Cougar had settled for mediocrity over the past ten years, and appeared to be the darling of elderly shoppers who didn’t want to buy a Buick.
There’s some good news in all this: with corporate albatross Mercury gone, Ford can focus efforts on revitalizing the Lincoln brand. Ford plans to expand Lincoln’s product offerings by seven new or redesigned models in the coming year. Ford will introduce EcoBoost powertrains across the Lincoln product line, and will market Lincoln as a high tech, environmentally friendly upscale brand.