Very Fast Cruising, Semi-Fuel Efficient, Extremely Comfortable, GREAT Handling!
The biggest thing I fear right now in this car is the fact that after driving on the highway for a couple hours straight, if you push the car to much, it seems like it starts to choke. No matter how much you push on the gas pedal, it doesn't seem to get any gas. Easiest thing to do to get it going again is wait a couple seconds and hold on the gas, or turn the car off and back on. (Yes, I have turned the car off while IN MOTION on the highway to fix this problem... in neutral of course. Do not attempt this if you don't know what you are doing PLEASE.) I have not yet been able to resolve this problem...
I notice on a lot of Topaz's and Tempo's on the road today that the rear end seems to sag. Well it happened to my Topaz as well. I just had the rear STRUTS replace (January 2004) at 45,000. The right rear was completely shot, and the left rear was ready to give out any day. The front ones seemed in great shape.
The LIMITED SLIP DIFFERENTIAL in this car causes the front right tire to wear down much faster than the front left. I'm not much into flooring it, but in the times of getting out in front of a car from a side road for example, sometimes the right tire will just break traction and spin an extra 3 or 4 times.
PAINT JOB on the roof of the car has war down to just about bare metal. Everywhere else on the car is fine. NO RUST.
BRAKES have been replaced once since the car's life time. New brakes were put on in 2001, and it's time for new ones already.
BRAKE FLUID runs down faster than normal. Be careful when running this car with worn brakes. Brake light does not let you know. It just uses more brake fluid to compensate for the loss of brake pad.
ENGINE NOISE is very loud when pushing 75 MPH. After that it quites down. At about 90 MPH it settles down to a reasonable volume.
WINDOW MOTORS have developed dead spots in them. My driver window, and the rear right window have dead spots on the motors. Unfortunately, the dead spots are when the windows are all the way down.
In this Grand Sport edition, the suspension of the car is extremely tight. People say that you can feel every bump, but that is not the truth. You can HEAR every bump. The suspension just echos throughout the car only because of the way the frame is built.
EXCELLENT PERFORMANCE on the road!
This 3-Speed automatic is not made for off the line racing, but once you get up to 95+ MPH, the torque is pretty good considering the 4-Cylinder engine.
At 100+ MPH you will only get about 16 - 18 mpg. Around 80 you can get 22 mpg. And if you really want to drag it out, (on my last tank of gas) I never went over 70 and never pushed it hard at all, and I got a WHOPPING 30 MPG!!! (OK, so it was 29.88... close enough)
EXCELLENT HANDLING on country roads:
When going through the mountains or just windy roads, you can count on this car to hug the road very well. The BODY ROLL of the car is Next to nothing, assuming your suspension is at least decent. And even if it's not, the car has never felt like it was going to flip over.
With the original tire sizes and rims, don't worry about bottoming out with this thing if you feel like taking it into the woods for camping or whatever else you can do with a Topaz in the woods. (Sorry, Random)
The Mercury Luxury Reputation:
Mercury vehicles are basically Ford "vehicles gone luxury." This car has very comfortable seats and is excellent for long drives without getting a sore rear or sore back.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 7th June, 2004