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3/4 Front Glamour 1998 Mercury Villager

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MPG 17 City / 23 Highway

Introduction

Among minivans, handling and ride quality are at least as important as cargo capacity. Granted, cargo capacity is important. But these days, auto makers know better than to deliver a minivan with an old-fashioned, truck-like ride. They know minivan buyers want commodious space accompanied with the smooth ride and performance of a sedan. Mercury's Villager is a byproduct of that knowledge. Since the introduction of the 1993 model, the Villager has offered a smooth, quiet ride with the responsiveness of a sedan. Now in its sixth year without a major redesign, the Villager has been a successful product. Many safety features were added last year, including dual air bags, childproof sliding-door locks, optional anti-lock brakes (ABS) and optional integrated child safety seats. New colors were added this year, along with an optional Gold Sport appearance package that features gold accents on the wheels, grille and lift gate ornament. Villager comes in three trim levels, the base GS, mid-line LS and top-of-the-line Nautica. Our Nautica test vehicle had a sticker price of $27,385, including the $580 delivery charge. The price was boosted to $30,130 by the following options: a $30 cargo net, a $100 anti-theft system; a $250 trailer-tow package; an $865 Supersound AM/FM/cassette/CD stereo; and a preferred equipment package that is priced at $2,870, but discounted to $1,500. That package includes a six-way power driver's seat, flip-open lift gate window, leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel, leather seats, autolamp on/off delay system, flip-open lift gate window, heated outside mirrors, dual illuminated visor mirrors, power windows/locks/outside mirrors, electronic automatic temperature control, keyless entry and electronic instrument cluster. Mercury's Villager and Nissan's Quest are a joint venture between the two companies. They are produced at Ford's Avon Lake, Ohio, assembly plant using Ford-supplied components, but they were designed by Nissan and are powered by a Nissan engine and drivetrain. We drove the Mercury Villager, but nearly everything we say about it applies to the Nissan Quest. The Quest offers the same quality level as the Villager; a unique grille, taillamps, lower fascias, and wheels distinguish the Nissan from the Mercury.Among minivans, handling and ride quality are at least as important as cargo capacity. Granted, cargo capacity is important. But these days, auto makers know better than to deliver a minivan with an old-fashioned, truck-like ride. They know minivan buyers want commodious space accompanied with the smooth ride and performance of a sedan. Mercury's Villager is a byproduct of that knowledge. Since the introduction of the 1993 model, the Villager has offered a smooth, quiet ride with the responsiveness of a sedan. Now in its sixth year without a major redesign, the Villager has been a successful product. Many safety features were added last year, including dual air bags, childproof sliding-door locks, optional anti-lock brakes (ABS) and optional integrated child safety seats. New colors were added this year, along with an optional Gold Sport appearance package that features gold accents on the wheels, grille and lift gate ornament. Villager comes in three trim levels, the base GS, mid-line LS and top-of-the-line Nautica. Our Nautica test vehicle had a sticker price of $27,385, including the $580 delivery charge. The price was boosted to $30,130 by the following options: a $30 cargo net, a $100 anti-theft system; a $250 trailer-tow package; an $865 Supersound AM/FM/cassette/CD stereo; and a preferred equipment package that is priced at $2,870, but discounted to $1,500. That package includes a six-way power driver's seat, flip-open lift gate window, leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel, leather seats, autolamp on/off delay system, flip-open lift gate window, heated outside mirrors, dual illuminated visor mi
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