Mercury offered several versions of its Country Cruiser station wagon in 1959. This white, two-door wagon is a Commuter and one of only 1,051 two-door wagons mercury produced that year (compared to more than 20,000 four-door models). The Commuter was powered by a 383 cubic-inch V8 engine that pumped out 280 horsepower.
This Commuter is on its second owner who purchased it in 1999 after being stored for years. It is un-restored. It features a power rear window, remote side mirror and factory air-conditioning, a $385 option in 1959.
Mercury continued to go its own way in 1959, with 'dream-car design' straight out of the jet-age. The massive body and chassis was carryover from 1957-58, but sheet metal was all-new. The top-of-the-line Colony Park featured flashy hardtop styling, aircraft-inspired side sculpturing and simulated wood paneling.
'Mercury is the one car in its class which does not use a dressed-up body shared with a lower priced car,' noted the 1959 Mercury brochure. But that would change in 1961, when Mercury was demoted, becoming a fancy version of the standard Ford. With this move, FoMoCo's costly late Fifties assault on GM was unsuccessfully concluded.
This 1959 Colony Park made its concours debut at the 2012 St. Johns Concours following a three-year restoration. It was originally purchased on July 30, 1959 from Fred Jones Ford-Mercury in Oklahoma City. Equipment on this luxury wagon includes a 430 cubic-inch V8 with a Multi-Drive three-speed automatic transmission, power steering, power brakes, air conditioning, power windows, four-way power seats, remote mirrors, seat belts and radio.
The Mercury County Cruiser was intended for the larger family with room 9-passengers or less. In 1959, the family could join together on a very enjoyable road trip with ample room with the addition of a hideaway third seat. This hideaway seat only take a few seconds to change from a 6- to a 9- passenger vehicle.
The panoramic windshield surrounded not only the sides but also the back, which gave the Mercury County Cruiser an open air feel. Featuring free-flow ventilation, the roll-down back windows allowed for easier loading and much more cargo space. The liftgate was eliminated so loading was much easier, and the window can be power-operated by merely a control on the instrument panel.
The 1959 Mercury County Cruiser came in a variety of three models, the Voyager, the Commuter and the Colony Park. All of these models came with a hidden ‘below-deck' compartment with an additional 4 cubic feet, hardtop styling and an all-clear loading platform. Much more than other station wagons, the County Cruiser gave you an additional 101.1 cubic feet of carrying space behind the front space.
A total of 1,051 Commuter two-door station wagons were produced, 2,496 Voyager four-doors, 15,122 four-door, six-passenger station wagons, 5,959 Colony Park four-door, six-passenger station wagons and 2,496 Voyager four-door, six-passenger station wagons. The power operation was optional on the Commuter, but standard equipment for both the Colony Park and the Voyager.
The Mercury Country Cruiser featured a panoramic skylight windshield with 1883 square inch area, with welded steel rigidized body construction. The interior featured an aircraft-type instrument panel, a safety steering wheel, while the exterior had safety-sweep electric powered windshield wipers, front-hinged hood and convertible-type doors for all hardtop models.By Jessica Donaldson