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Ford Five Hundred/Mercury Montego

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Comments

  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    If the Five Hundred and Freestyle don't sell, I expect a lot of decontenting to get them price competitive with the Impala.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Saw the spread on them in the new Automobile mag today. I was pretty impressed from the exterior view. They have potential, if they run as good as they should, and the interior doesn't disappoint, they'll do fine.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    Nvbanker - my early '02 Mountaineer V8 rwd built in July of 2001 with all options except sunroof, running boards, and 4WD rides rough. After owing a 1994 Thunderbird V8 which was smooth and quiet, and driving a rental '02 Explorer V6, my Mountaineer has been a big disapointment. How do the two you have owned ride? I am on the message boards because I am shopping to find some 2005 model vehicle to replace the Mountaineer. From an economic standpoint I would love to keep it for 200,000 miles, but I drive too much to tolerate it much longer.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    FSM,

    How has your vehicle been a dissapointment ? Are you looking for a car-based alternative ute, something maybe like a Freestyle ?
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    Hey Ant, is anyone working on using electric solenoids instead of cam shafts to open and close valves? this would make cylinder shut off easy....
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Various methods are currently being tested throughout the industry. 2 of which you have mentioned...retarding spark ignition/fuel delivery to the cylinder. I prefer electric selenoid method since so far it's the easiest and known way. I'm awaiting to see Honda's method for their OHC V6 they wish to implement a cylinder de-activation senario in.

    And there's various other things being tested to improve fuel economy in the industry like electric steering, electric starter's, etc. More items that are removed from the engine load and onto the electric system can improve fuel economy. Only other issue is, you can't add to much because our current 12V batteries can only hold so much. So next up, 42V electrical systems... which will obviously add weight to the vehicle. The techonology is still being tested to somehow improve the added weight, and reach a fine line where you can add heft, but without having a penalty on fuel usage for doing so.
  • gregagrega Posts: 31
    I had the chance to drive the 500 today at Ford's innovation test drive and overall impression is very good. The car looks good, not bland at all, very solid and conservative so it should last a long time (vs. Taurus egg-shape).

    Interior is quite roomy and quality (dash) looks good and the wood, although plastic, looks and feels solid, not cheap. The high seating position was a popular comment by most people and everyone liked it. For a mid-size it is very roomy, almost more than a crown vic.

    Performance on the track was acceptable, not a hot rod 0-to-60, but satisfying, just don't cross shop it with a 300C. I thought the steering could have been tighter, seemed a little slow in the s-turns with not enough feedback.

    Overall, the car is impressive and should do well with its solid appearance and very roomy interior and high seating, a very satisfying package.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    I think I know what you mean, fsm.... My life changed with the acquisition of a ranch out of town in 1995. My main driver at the time was a Lincoln Continental - a veritable land yacht for smooth driving. After beating up the Lincoln on some dirt roads for about a year, I decided I needed to switch to an SUV as a pickup wouldn't be appropriate for work. When the Mountaineer made its first debut, I went and tried one out - they only came with V-8s initially, and I tried an AWD model. I thought the ride was just awful, unacceptable, Jeep like and miserable, so I waited. I tried the Chevy Blazer, which rode much softer, but was ugly and felt very cheap to me. The Expedition had just came out, but the only models available were strippers, and I was used to some luxury, so I waited a while, and finally bought the Mountaineer. I had it for 2 years, and although it was a flawless truck, I hated it except when I went to the ranch on weekends - then I loved it. But as a daily driver, I never liked the car. Funny thing though, my wife loved it! So, I bought her a 98 Mountaineer, and when my lease was up on my 97, I moved up to a Navigator, which satisfied my two needs, and itches. I still drive Navigators, and my wife still drives Mountaineers. She traded the 98 on an 02 which was a huge improvement in ride quality, due to the independent rear suspension. Now, we have an 04, which we like best of them all. I guess my conclusion is, I got used to the ride partially over the years, and the ride improved with the 02 significantly, while the utility is still there. I personally think the truck is the perfect utility vehicle. I am a little surprised that the 02 offends you so much. If you don't like the 02, you'd have HATED the 97 & 98!! Anyway, the Expedition/Navigator ride much smoother and only cost you about 1 MPG over the Mountaineer. If something that large isn't an option - I don't know much else you can do. TrailBlazers ride and drive a little softer still, if you can stand the cheesy interiors. Perhaps some of the imports may ride easier too, but I doubt it. Every import I tried was even truckier. IMO, the Explorer/Mountaineer is the best handling and riding SUV on the planet.....

    Now, there are crossovers that are less trucky, like the new Freestyle, the MDX, the Pilot, and the Rendezvous. More like a minivan. Perhaps they would do better for you? Maybe go try a Freestyle out? See what you think.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    Ant14 - the '02 Mountineer disappointment is the very rough ride, noisy ride, and wobbly front suspension - all kinds of play, bumps, and noise through the steering column. I have briefly driven an Aviator and it feels somewhat better, but for the huge price increase, it should. I do live in California, and the freeways here are quite rough, but our '94 T-bird with an IRS was smooth and quiet.

    Nvbanker - I am on this forum just because the Five Hundred family seems like a potential alternative to an SUV. I need a work vehicle with capacity to haul my 55" x 22" Wing ladder and various other equipment. If I can find a car with a big enough trunk, I would prefer it over another wagon body style, as it would allow me to keep all of my things in a separate compartment so that I am also not bothered with rattles from that stuff, and it would be safer than hauling items which might fly about in a wreck in the same compartment. Ford definitely has the right idea with the Five Hundred family bodies and interiors - the looks, the high seating, the plentiful storage compartments, the big back seat, and the big trunk are all very well done. The solid axle Panther cars are just too primitave. I am also looking at the upcoming Honda four door car-truck, which will share the next generation Pilot / Odyessey / MDX platform.
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Well, the rack & pinion steering these trucks have does purposefully transmit road feel very well to the steering wheel & driver, by design. The downside to that, is that you get more feedback than you want sometimes. But play and wobbly are not normal. I've not driven a Mountaineer over 40,000 miles, as I trade cars too often. I have an old Explorer with 140,000 miles on it, but it's different up front, so it doesn't help. Sounds like this truck is just not for you, sadly. Perhaps you could go test drive a new one and see if it's just yours, or if they are too rough for your taste?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Some people have complained over the Explorer's/Mountaineer's being a bit rougher riding, as in, you feel more of the road, when in turn...it's really not a vehicle people are used to feeling much in. As in most truck-like SUV's, they are expecting a smooth, cushy experience all around. I'm shocked Edmunds has those twins awarded actually.

    The Aviator cures this issue with a bit more insulation all around, but as you stated, not enough to justify the price premium in your case.

    You might like the 500/Freestyle in those regards. And from the dislikes you stated you were experience, I think the 500/Freestyle will satisfy it. They are both quiet, and the ride is cushy overall, yet somewhat aware you are communicated.

    Has anyone tested the brakes? A full, belt cinching, seat encrusting, type of brake slam ? Feels like an anchor was thrown out the window..
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    Funny, ANT, I did that in my maiden LS test drive, and not only did the car stop like an Fighter on an Aircraft Carrier, the butt never came up, the front never dove! It sold me completely on the superior dynamics of this car. If the 500 can do something like that, it may be as quantum a leap as the 86 Taurus was in family trans.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    Well the LS was designed with SLA front suspension to avoid the dramatic diving most cars do upon panic breaking. It's sort of pricey set up actually.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    Just a few numbers this time.

    The AWD CVT models will have 1.4 pounds of car to move per foot-pound of torque to start moving.

    The FWD 6-speed cars will have 1.2 pounds of car per foot-pound of torque in 1st gear, then will jump to 2.1 pounds per foot-pound in second gear.

    Even though it weighs more, the AWD CVT may be the best accelerating version, so I'll lower my guess to 8.4 seconds to 60. What do you think?
  • yak54yak54 Posts: 72
    Anyone heard any price ranges?
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    It'll be announced later this week.
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    Is anybody else here going to the Ford Racing Innovation Drive on September 2 in LA? I will be there with my wife at 10:00am
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Pricing is one MAJOR factor in the success of this car, or lack thereof. More so than even for most cars, in my opinion.

    You may want to see:

    http://www.freep.com/money/autonews/chrysler10e_20040810.htm
  • rcf8000rcf8000 Posts: 619
    I see that the EPA mileage with the CVT is lower than that with the 6 speed. Makes me wonder why Ford offers the CVT at all.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,582
    "EPA mileage with the CVT "

    Where have you see EPA estimates published for the 500?
    - Ray
    Can't find it . . .
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    I see Media Ford has updated the annual 2005 Fuel Economy cost and made some changes to their chart eliminating the 4WD Freestyle but continue to maintain a 4WD Five Hundred and a 4WD Montego

    http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=17877&ma- ke_id=92
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    It appears that the correct fuel economy chart is in the announcement today (8/10) of the prices. There is no 4WD version of the cars, so the chart buckwheat mentioned is still wrong. The vehicles are vaailable with FWD or AWD.

    Also, if you did not see the prices they are $26,795 for the Limited, $2,000 less for the SEL, and $2,000 less than that for the SE. The AWD is $1,700, and the side bags are $595-$795, depending on model.
  • buckwheatbuckwheat Posts: 396
    Not great detail in this release but it provides prices for US Montego

    http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=18897

    Same with this on the Five Hundred/Freestyle but it is for Canadians

    http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=18909
  • mschmalmschmal Posts: 1,757
    Some people on this forum have been ranting about the Dodge 300. Personally I don't even feel that the 300 competes with the Five Hundred. First its rear drive and second we now know its going to cost alot more than the Five Hundred.

    The Dodge 300 is a great car but its geared toward a different crowd.

    On the other hand, the Five Hundred totally stomps the direct competitor, the Chevy Impala and its much less expensive than other cars in this class such as Maxima and Avalon. Oh and its AWD.

    For people looking for luxury and lots of room at a great price. The Five Hundred is a strong offering. There is more than enough market share to go around and this car will do well.

    Mark
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    The pricing of the Five Hundred / Montego and the 300 with the 3.5 V6 are very close, and they both offer similar interior room, but the Ford cars have a much larger trunk. I do not understand how anyone would not look at both. The basic Impala chasis dates from the middle 1980's. As for rear drive, that is a big plus, although the Ford AWD really helps reduce the problems caused by loading all of the steering and traction work onto the front tires. As for winter traction, the 300 / Magnum have been proven to do very well - they are not 1965 cars with open differentials, and they are also available with AWD. The Maxima and Avalon (new for 2005) both offer more powerful engines, although the Five Hundred and Montego have both beat on appearance and price. These are just a few of the many new vehicles for 2005, making it a very good year for cars buyers and car enthusiasts.

    By the way, since the prices are the same, I now prefer the Montego, since it has a two-tone interior, perforated leather seats (cooler) and LED tail lights.
  • ANT14ANT14 Posts: 2,687
    And HID lights as well...
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Where have you seen the next Avalon? The photo thats been circulating (and was, to my surprise, shown in Car and Driver) has been pretty much repudiated as a fake.

    ~alpha
This discussion has been closed.