I ENJOY DRIVING MY LITTLE SUV ( MERCURY MARINER ). I TOOK IT FOR A TEST RUN FROM FREDRICKSBURG VA. TO NEW YORK CITY . IT PERFORMED LIKE A CHAMP. SMOOTH ON THE HIGHWAY ,HAD PLENTY OF PICK UP AT THE RIGHT TIME. AND IF YOU EVER BEEN TO NEW YORK CITY, A LOT OF BRAKING, AND ACCELRATING. ALSO IT'S PRETTY GOOD ON GAS. I NAMED MY SUV ( THE LITTLE HUMPSTER ) , AKA ( THE ROAD WARRIOR ).
The Mariner has almost all the same great comfort features of my Landrover LR3. Leather trim, sunroof, heated seats, electric seats, etc. Few things I missed were arm rests while driving distances, stereo controls on the steering wheel, and heated seats in the second row. (If you haven't had stereo controls on the steering wheel then you won't even notice.) But hey, the Mercury was 1/3 of the price of my Landrover and looks great too. Fuel economy is 17mpg in the city and uses regular unleaded fuel. All in all a comfortable little SUV. Its not big cargo vehicle and it doesn't race around the city, but its fun and comfy to get passengers near and far.
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.