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2005 Mercury Montego Review
Stylish, roomy, and practical.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 2005 Mercury Montego premiered at the 2004 Chicago Auto Show as the company’s first all-new sedan since the original Sable debuted nearly 20 years ago. Built on the Volvo S80 platform, the Montego can be equipped with front drive or all-wheel drive, which can automatically distribute up to 100 percent of traction to the rear wheels. An all-new continuously variable transmission (CVT) or a six-speed automatic are the transmission choices, and the Montego is available in two trim levels: Luxury and Premier. The 2005 Mercury Montego has a larger interior than most in its class, and class-leading headroom and legroom for the rear-seat occupants. Passengers also enjoy an elevated, sport-utility-like seating position, almost four inches higher than in most sedans. Since it is based on the Volvo S80 platform, it shares Volvo’s reputation for safety, which buyers looking for a family-friendly vehicle will appreciate.
Engines: 3.0-liter V-6
Transmissions: six-speed automatic, CVT
Models: Mercury Montego Luxury, Mercury Montego Premier
The Mercury Montego is all-new for 2005.
The 2005 Mercury Montego differentiates from its corporate twin, the Ford Five Hundred, with a waterfall-style grille flanked by high-intensity discharge headlights and rectangular foglamps. Unique front and rear bumpers and chrome taillight bezels also give the Montego an upscale twist. LED tail lamps provide quicker illumination than conventional bulbs. Built on a 112.9-inch wheelbase, the Montego is 200.7 inches long overall and stands 60.1 inches tall. The Montego Luxury model rides on 17-inch alloy wheels, while the Premier model features 15-spoke, 18-inch alloy wheels. All models feature four-wheel independent suspension, and AWD models have self-leveling rear shocks. Although the engine lacks some power off the line, once up to speed, the Montego offers a smooth, stable ride. The all-wheel-drive system is ideal for wet or snowy conditions. Based on Volvo’s electronically-controlled Haldex AWD system, it can anticipate wheel slip before it actually happens.
The 2005 Mercury Montego’s cabin can fit up to five occupants and features an upright seating position similar to a sport utility vehicle. A cross-car beam designed to increase safety holds the front seats, and the rear seats are slightly elevated to offer passengers a better view. The trunk boasts an impressive 21 cubic feet of cargo space. Both the front passenger seat and the 60/40-split rear seat fold flat for extra cargo capacity. A leather-wrapped, tilt-adjustable steering wheel with satin-aluminum spokes, a six-way power driver’s seat, an overhead console, center front console with cup holders, and rear fold-down center armrest with storage are standard on both Montego models. Leather upholstery is optional on the Luxury and standard on the Premier model. The Premier model also features a heated driver’s seat; memorized seat, pedal, and exterior mirror positions for two drivers; a universal remote transmitter, and an upgraded stereo system with an in-dash six-disc CD changer and MP3 playback. Standalone options include power-adjustable pedals and a moonroof.
Performance & Handling
The 2005 Mercury Montego's Luxury and Premier models run on a three-liter, V-6 engine that generates 203 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque. The Montego’s new CVT is standard on the AWD models, while front-drive models get a six-speed automatic transmission with CVT available as an option. A relatively hefty curb weight of 3680 pounds means the small V-6 is adequate for around-town and highway cruising, but those carrying heavy loads will find that it struggles a bit.
The 2005 Mercury Montego has standard four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with electronic brake force distribution. Other standard safety equipment includes child seat anchors, rear door child safety locks, dual front airbags with passenger-sensing deactivation, a three-point seatbelt in the rear center, front seatbelt pre-tensioners, and traction control. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags are optional along with a rollover Safety Canopy. All-disc anti-lock brakes are standard. Seat-mounted side-impact airbags are optional and packaged with a rollover Safety Canopy. A reverse sensing system that warns drivers of obstacles when backing up is also optional. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gives the Montego five stars across the board in frontal- and side-impact crash testing, and four out of five stars for rollover resistance.
EPA Fuel Economy
Mercury Montego FWD, CVT: 18/25 mpg city/highway
Mercury Montego AWD, CVT: 17/23 mpg city/highway
- Roomy cabin
- Huge trunk
- Available AWD
You Won't Like
- Mediocre engine performance
- Some low-grade interior materials
- No stability control available
Stylish, roomy, and practical.
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