I decided I needed to move from a sports car to an SUV and have always been a Ford girl. While doing some research I happened upon the 4 wheel drive Mercury Mariner. I am so happy with it! It is comfortable, roomy, versatile and has a ton of options! I am so addicted to the SYNC system and love the fact that my family can watch movies while we're traveling. The engine with its 6 speed transmission has some great power and I'm never left behind in traffic. The fact that I can easily tow our hunting trailer and carry the kayak on the roof was a major selling feature. I am thrilled!
And, that's strange, since the Mercury is, usually speaking, a higher-end vehicle than its Ford cousin. We had been looking at the Ford Escapes with less features, which were running about $2,000 or so more than this Mariner ended up being, even by adding a two-way power sunroof to what we got. However, I am surprised that the Mercury Mariner does not have mirror defrosters or an outside temperature reading on it. You can see that the temperature option is available, if you look closely at the digital readout in the top of the dash, but it was not a feature on our Mariner. It does take a little bit of time to heat the entire cabin in really cold weather, since there does not appear to be rear vents in it. I am also sort of surprised that the seating isn't a little more plush. The upholstery kind of reminds me of mid-line trucks with cloth seats, instead of a Mercury SUV. We have been getting pretty good mileage out of it with the 4 cylinder. My wife averages about 28.5mpg most days. Quite a bit of that is interstate driving but she still encounters some traffic with which to contend and still has that average. And, we don't really feel like we compromised on the power with the 4 cylinder engine. It's not like she does any towing, so it's had more than ample power for her needs. All-in-all though, my wife really likes her Mercury Mariner. I'm okay with it and think it beats the heck out of riding in a compact car, like she had before, where I felt as though my posterior was dragging the pavement going down the road. It sits us up quite a bit higher and gets her out of the road spray from tractor trailers in inclement weather.
Mariner gets great gas mileage on average 24.5. Ride is comfortable but a little noisy from outside air. Plenty of interior room as long as you only are carrying 4. Plenty of cargo room for groceries but not good if you need to hall much more unless you fold down rear seat which is cumbersome. You have to take the head rests off to fold it down. I am a do it yourself er and can be inconvenient. Only mechanical problem has been a vibration in the accelerator pedal between 3 & 4 gear but is occasional. I noticed the same problem on a loaner car while in shop for problem. I figured it is just something I will have to get used to unless the transmission starts to slip.