Blast from the past: 2011 Grand Marquis

By Jerry Robbin

The Mercury Grand Marquis was born way back in 1978, and lived a long and faithful life for its followers.

It had multiple changes in appearance, and as with most senior citizens, there were upgrades to its body and mechanicals.

For its final year, the 2011 Grand Marquis received no changes and continues to hold a Mercury proud of its heritage. The old-school, body-on-frame chassis is and was sturdy, simple and dependable.

The 2011 Grand Marquis was a full-size sedan that seated six people. Standard equipment included 17-inch wheels, rear air suspension, automatic headlights, foglamps, keyless entry, automatic climate control, a 50/50 split front bench with six-way driver and passenger power adjustability, power-adjustable pedals, leather upholstery, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a tilting leather-wrapped steering wheel and a CD player stereo.

Options included heated seats, a leather-wood steering wheel and a cassette player.

Driving impression
Driving the 2011 Grand Marquis is like taking a trip back in time. Handling was superlative for the size of the vehicle. Pick up off the line with its V-8 was impressive and getting on any highway was a breeze. The Grand Marquis’ immense size, cushy suspension and zero-effort steering combined to simulate floating on air.

Under the hood
The rear-wheel-drive 2011 Grand Marquis is powered by a 4.6-liter V-8 that has 224 hp and 275 lb.-ft of torque. A four-speed automatic is standard. The Grand Marquis does zero to 60 mph that requires about 8.5 seconds, and fuel economy is 16 mpg city/24 mpg highway.

The Grand Marquis’ interior design for the time period wasn’t really changed. Major controls reside in the center of the dash and are easy to access. They are easy to read and are from a simpler technological time.

The cabin is wide, but backseat legroom is impressive, and five adults can easily travel on a vacation in this land yacht.

The Grand Marquis is one of the cars capable of seating three people in the front seat, which means you can stuff six people inside. Their luggage will be able to come along, as well, because the trunk measures 20.6 cubic feet, making it the largest of any car.

The 2011 Grand Marquis hadn’t changed in years, but highlighting the vehicle is the Mercury signature grille and taillights.

Safety features
Standard safety equipment includes antilock disc brakes, traction control and front-seat side airbags. Neither stability control nor side curtain airbags are offered. Nonetheless, the Grand Marquis fared well in crash tests by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, scoring a perfect five stars for both frontal and side impacts.

However, while the big Mercury earned the top rating of “Good” in frontal-offset crash testing conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, it garnered a “Marginal” rating in side-impact crash testing.

You can still find a used good 2011 Grand Marquis if you are in the market for the last Grand Marquis standing for your everyday driver.

Here are some of the 2011 Grand Marquis’ features:
* Remote Trunk Release.
* Leather Trim On Center Console.
* Overhead Console With Storage.
* Front Seatback Storage.
* Cruise Control.
* Leather Steering Wheel.
* Simulated Wood Trim On Doors.
* Cruise Controls On Steering Wheel.
* Tilt-Adjustable Steering Wheel.
* Climate Control.
* Dual Illuminating Vanity Mirrors.
* Speed-Proportional Power Steering.
* Front And Rear Cupholders.
* Electrochromatic Inside Rear-view Mirror.
* Retained Accessory Power.
* Rear Floor Mats.
* Front Door Pockets.
* Front And Rear Reading Lights.
* Trunk Light.
* Simulated Wood Trim On Dash.

* Front head room, 39.5 in.
* Front hip room, 57.4 in.
* Front leg room, 41.6 in.
* Front shoulder room, 60.6 in.
* Rear head room, 37.8 in.
* Rear hip room, 56.1 in.
* Rear leg room, 38 in.
* Rear shoulder room, 60 in.
* Curb weight, 4,117 lbs.
* Length, 212 in,
* Height, 56.3 in.
* Wheelbase, 114.6 in.
* Width, 78.3 in.