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Junkyard Gem: 1992 Mercury Grand Marquis LS

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We have all been seeing the immediately acquainted Ford Crown Victoria P71 Police Interceptor on North American roads for what looks as if perpetually, although actually the very first of the aerodynamic Crown Vics did not seem till a mere 31 years in the past. Sure, after greater than a decade of boxy LTD Crown Victorias, Dearborn took the late-Nineteen Seventies-vintage Panther platform and added a brand-new, Taurus-influenced easy physique and fashionable overhead-cam V8 engine, giving us the 1992 Ford Crown Victoria. The rule was, since 1939, that (almost) each Ford mannequin wanted a corresponding Mercury, and so the Mercury Division utilized completely different grille and taillights and the rejuvenated Grand Marquis was born. Here is one of many first of these automobiles to be constructed, now residing in a Denver-area self-service boneyard.

The Marquis identify goes respectably far again, to the late Sixties and a Mercurized model of the Ford LTD hardtop. The Grand Marquis started life because the identify for an inside trim package deal on the 1974 Marquis Brougham (additionally LTD-based), finally turning into a mannequin in its personal proper for the 1979 mannequin yr. At the moment’s Junkyard Gem got here off the Ontario meeting line in March 1991, making one of many very first examples constructed.

For 1992 (and thru 2011), the Grand Marquis was a Crown Victoria with barely enhanced bragging rights. This one has the top-grade LS trim, with an MSRP of $20,644 (that is about $44,370 in inflation-adjusted 2022 {dollars}). The corresponding Ford-badged mannequin (constructed on the identical meeting line by the identical staff) would have been the Crown Victoria LX, which truly price a bit extra: $20,987 ($44,910 now). The very least expensive civilian 1992 Crown Vic price simply $19,563 ($42,045 as we speak).

There weren’t any powertrain variations between the Crown Victoria and Grand Marquis in 1992. The one engine obtainable was this Modular 4.6 SOHC V8, rated at both 190 (single exhaust) or 210 (twin exhaust) horsepower. The transmission was a four-speed computerized with overdrive.

What number of miles are on this one? Cannot say! Based mostly on the worn-out inside, I’ll guess 221,719 miles handed beneath this automobile’s wheels throughout its 32-plus years on the highway. I’ve seen some very high-mile Police Interceptors, in fact, together with one with 412,013 miles, however Ford did not go to six-digit odometers within the Grand Marquis till a bit deeper into the Nineties.

Because of flawed speech-to-text functions on smartphones, the Grand Marquis is named the “Grandma Keith” to many people as we speak.

The final Grandma Keith was in-built February of 2011. I had the privilege of renting a late-2010 instance after I went to Connecticut to work the 2010 New England 24 Hours of Lemons at Stafford Motor Speedway.

That automobile was among the finest leases I’ve ever pushed in my life (together with a Peugeot 208 in Luxembourg), and I loved taking it onto the race monitor with my fellow Lemons Supreme Courtroom justice, Jonny Lieberman. This being July in New England, the temperatures reached triple-digit ranges with corresponding 98% humidity, so we left the Grand Marquis Final Version idling subsequent to the penalty field with the air-con going full blast, giving us a cold place to flee the warmth for transient durations. These automobiles had extremely highly effective air-con; inside temperature should have been within the low 40s, and I recall frost forming on the sprint vents, however that reminiscence will not be 100% correct.

The Grandma lasted precisely so long as Mercury did, and we mourn its passing.

When the winds of change are upon us, Mercury retains the previous “huge Merc” traditions whereas including fashionable aerodynamics and working gear.

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