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The Order Bank Is Open for America's Newest Hybrid: 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid On Sale Today

Submitted by: Ford Motor Company

Categories: Environment

Posted: Jul 11, 2005 – 12:00 AM EST

 

DEARBORN, Mich. - Ford Motor Company's Mercury brand opened sales today for the all-new 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid, a compact SUV with outstanding fuel economy and smart and sophisticated Mercury styling. Beginning today, orders may be placed for the Mercury Mariner Hybrid online at http://www.marinerhybrid.com as well as at certified dealerships.

True to its distinctive nature, the Mercury Mariner Hybrid will go to market very differently than other Lincoln and Mercury vehicles. For starters, the majority of sales inquiries for the Mercury Mariner Hybrid are expected to be taken online with the assistance of "Personal Sales Consultants" who will serve as the primary liaison between customers and dealerships. First come/first served real-time consumer demand will determine which dealers and customers receive the vehicles.

Moreover, marketing for the Mercury Mariner Hybrid will be very targeted and aimed at environmentally conscious consumers who are also looking for a smart, sophisticated and stylish vehicle. Initial advertising will be online with web banners on specific sections of Yahoo and Google as well as home page "takeovers" of http://www.Edmunds.com and http://www.CBSNews.com. In addition, the Mercury Mariner Hybrid will have a presence on the websites of key environmental organizations, including the Sierra Club and National Geographic.

In fact, the Sierra Club will be working with Mercury to get the news about the Mariner Hybrid out to its members and other environmentally conscious Americans. The Sierra Club will introduce the vehicle to its members through its "Insider" newsletter and will work with Mercury to educate consumers about how to get the best mileage from their hybrids.

"We hope that helping to make the Mercury Mariner Hybrid a success will encourage Ford to invest in better technology to increase the fuel economy of its entire fleet," said Dan Becker, director, Sierra Club's Global Warming Program.

"We are taking a very non-traditional approach to marketing the Mercury Mariner Hybrid because our target customers are very progressive," said Al Giombetti, president, Lincoln Mercury division of Ford Motor Company. "The Mercury Mariner Hybrid's target customers are looking for distinctive design, the versatility of a sport-utility vehicle and advanced technology that is capable of bettering both their lives and the environment. Moreover, they are tech-savvy: our research indicates that more than eighty percent of Mercury shoppers begin their shopping experience online."

The sales process will begin with customers logging onto http://www.marinerhybrid.com and choosing a certified Mercury hybrid dealer in their area. The Personal Sales Consultant will obtain a price quote from the dealer and provide the quote to the customer, all the while being available to answer questions about the vehicle's features, key benefits, pricing, etc.
The consultant will then stay in touch with the customer throughout the sales process, from the time the quote is requested until the vehicle is delivered.

"Buying a hybrid is a major commitment for many people and the time from order to delivery can be much longer than a typical vehicle," said Giombetti. "We want to make sure we stay close to each individual customer and make the experience a rewarding one." The Mercury Mariner Hybrid is the second of five hybrids announced by Ford Motor Company. The first, the Ford Escape Hybrid, went on sale last fall as a 2005 model year vehicle and was named the North American Truck of the Year.

"Demand for our first hybrid was so strong that we pushed very hard to pull production of the Mercury Mariner Hybrid up by a full year," said Mary Ann Wright, director, Ford Sustainable Mobility Technologies and Hybrid Programs. "Ford is committed to improving fuel economy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions across its range of vehicles. As the second of our five announced hybrids, the Mariner Hybrid represents the next stage of this
commitment."

The Mercury Mariner Hybrid is a compact SUV that blends the best features of a gasoline engine and an electric motor to achieve nearly 50 percent higher city driving efficiency and lower emissions with no loss of functionality or performance. With outstanding fuel economy estimated at 33 mpg/city and 29 mpg/highway, it will meet the cleanest emission achievable by a fossil-fuel vehicle: California's Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Standard. In addition, it has extended range well over 400 miles per tank and V-6-like acceleration performance.

Configured as a full hybrid, the Mercury Mariner Hybrid's powertrain system is able to propel the vehicle to 25 miles per hour solely with clean electric power. When not required during coasting, at stoplights or crawling at low speeds through traffic, the gasoline engine automatically shuts down to conserve fuel and curb emissions.

Two thousand Mercury Mariner Hybrids will be built at the Kansas City Assembly Plant for the 2006 model year. Eventually, Mercury Mariner Hybrid volume will grow to 4,000 annually.

Pricing for the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid will start at a manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) of $29,840, which includes a number of premium standard features.

About Lincoln Mercury
Lincoln Mercury is a division of the Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich. Ford Motor Company manufactures and distributes automobiles in 200 markets across six continents. With more than 325,000 employees and 110 plants worldwide, the company's core and affiliated automotive brands include Aston Martin, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Lincoln, Mazda, Mercury and Volvo. Its automotive-related services include Ford Motor Credit Company and Hertz.

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