Editor’s Note: As TheDetroitBureau.com reported, this week, Ford’s long-struggling Mercury brand officially ceased to exist as the New Year rolled in. But whether it should have been sent to the automotive rust heap is a matter of debate. While most folks were happy to see it go, TheDetroitBureau.com’s resident historian – and contrarian — Mike Davis weighs in with an opposing viewpoint.
According to the latest definitions, a contrarian argues a counter-intuitive position against the conventional wisdom. (Note: the word contrarian does not even appear in my vintage 1967 American College Dictionary, much less the one I used as an undergraduate 15 years earlier. Nor does Microsoft’s spell-check like it.)
Ford Motor Company, after starving its traditional “medium-price” Mercury nameplate for years, finally pulled the plug with production of the last Mercury Grand Marquis at the St. Thomas, Ontario, assembly plant earlier this week. Assembly of badge-engineered Mercury Milan, Mercury Mariner and Mercury Mountaineer ended last year. Even earlier, the company killed off Mercury Cougar and a decade ago never invested in a Mercury version of Focus.