Rare Rides: This 1976 Mercury Monarch Is Both Grand and a Ghia
Our own Sajeev Mehta pointed out this grey brougham box the other day. He always keeps his ear to the pulse of the Internets for any old Ford, Ghia, or Ford Ghia vehicles which come up for sale.
It’s luxury and elegance on a Grand level! Come have a look.
Mercury was no stranger to using the Monarch name on cars; it first appeared in Canada in the 1940s. Ford rebadged higher-end Mercury vehicles and sold them over the border as Monarchs. Lower-level Mercury cars became Meteors (once Monarch disappeared; Ford provided the bodies earlier on). Canadians must hate the word “mercury.” But why?
In the United States, the Monarch nameplate was a short-lived one. On offer at Mercury dealerships between 1975 and 1980, the good people at Ford used the Granada as a starting place for an upmarket Mercury version. Mercury customers received a different grille and light arrangements front and rear, as well as luxurious trim. Trim is an important consideration for our Rare Ride today, as it’s the least common Monarch.
For the 1975 and ’76 model years, the Monarch was offered in the luxuriously equipped Grand Monarch Ghia trim. Intended to slot in right under the full-size Grand Marquis, the Grand Monarch Ghia was the only one to get four-wheel disc brakes. Additionally, a central hydraulic system supplemented the standard electrical system.
Leather was standard on all Grand Monarch Ghias. Your author would be remiss in failing to point out the luxury and exclusivity provided by the Ghia badge on the dashboard (and embedded in the richly landau-ed c-pillar).
Other standard features on the Grand Monarch Ghia included a leather steering wheel, special 14-inch multi-spoke wheels, whitewalls, a solid state ignition, and higher-quality carpeting and soundproofing.
This one’s equipped with the 302 V8, which was not the largest on offer. That honor goes to the 351 V8 of the same Windsor family.
The Grand Monarch Ghia was perhaps too luxurious for the Mercury M badge it wore on the front. While the regular Monarch’s official replacement was the Fox body Cougar for 1981, the Grand Monarch Ghia was replaced in 1977 by the Lincoln Versailles.
A brougham lesson on the dangers of being too aspirational, perhaps? The Lincoln Versailles was not available in Ghia trim, and that’s a step down no matter which way you look at it. Today’s Rare Ride is on eBay presently, and is yours for just $4,600. If it were brown, Sajeev would’ve clicked that Buy It Now button days ago.
[Images via seller]
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Funny how time changes one's views... when I was a young'en in the Seventies I despised the new-for-'75 Granada and Monarch even tho I was a true-blue Ford kid, but now I'd have no issue cruising one. Especially if it was one of these Grand Monarchs. Give me one in this particular shade of grey but make mine a 351W, thanks.