At first glance, 1966 Mercurys appeared to be virtual twins of the '65s. A closer look revealed a new hood, fenders, grille and ornamentation. Other changes could be found in the engine bay, where the base 390 V-8 was muscled up to 265 bhp with the standard three-speed transmission and 275 bhp for use with the optional four-speed manual or automatic.
The 1967 Mercury Breezeway underwent profound changes.
The four-barrel 390 was replaced by a new 410-cid V-8. Standard on Park Lanes and optional on the others, the 330-bhp mill was exclusive to Mercury. At the top, the 427 was dropped in favor of a 428-cube V-8 that developed 345 bhp. Ford's new C6 automatic transmission was available with the 410 and 428. Standard equipment now included a raft of government-imposed safety features.
Profound change came to the 1967 Breezeways. Gone were the reverse-slant backlight and the massive roof pillars. In profile, these new Breezeways looked like most every other four-door sedan on the market with C-pillars that slanted forward from their bases. The rear glass wasn't flush with the end of the pillars, but was inset slightly, retaining a hint of the visor effect. The full window now lowered, albeit only two inches.
The new Mercurys were the latest in Detroit to imitate Pontiac's highly successful "coke bottle" school of styling with a flowing fenderline that gently rose at midbody, then tapered off toward the rear of the car. At least the Lincoln look persisted up front, where the prominent center grille with corresponding hood bulge returned after having been abandoned for '66.
Engines were basically carryovers, though the base 390 was up to 270 bhp with any transmission, and a high-compression 390 "P" with 281 bhp became a midyear option for cars with the Select-Shift automatic.
Montclair returned to the Breezeway fold for '67, but like the Monterey Breezeway, it sold alongside a fixed-backlight four-door sedan that was $63 cheaper. Park Lane four-door sedans still came only as Breezeways, but a new Brougham subseries doubled the number of Park Lane sedan offerings.
All Park Lanes now came with Merc-O-Matic automatic transmission and power front-disc brakes, but Broughams added a plusher interior and more sound insulation.
Total Mercury production bolted to nearly 355,000 for the model year -- invigorated by the new Cougar "ponycar" -- but little of that record was due to Breezeways. Only 17,549 were built.
Keep reading to learn about the 1968 Mercury Breezeway.
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