At $ 8,900, is this 1998 Mercury Villager Nautica worth seeing?
Remember the days when minivans didn’t all have sliding doors on the left side? today Good price or no dice Mercury Villager remembers. Let’s see if a layer of luxury and extremely low miles means you’ll let that missing portal slip away.
For a while there, a few decades ago, Cadillac used the advertising slogan “Cadillac Style”. At the time, it felt like the company didn’t even really know what that was supposed to mean. Since then, the brand has gone through several iterations – no more and no less successful than the last – and today the brand’s purpose still remains a puzzle.
Along the way, however, Cadillac managed to bring out some interesting cars and trucks, and one of them was the 2005 CTS-V that we considered last Friday. A brutal Rock ‘Em-Sock’ Em Robot of a car, the CTS-V married a Corvette V8 engine and manual transmission with a solidly designed RWD chassis that could put those elements to good use. The black-on-black 2005 CTS-V that fell before our auspicious eyes had modest miles and was priced at a non-luxury arena of $ 12,900. For many of you, this award solidified the styling of the Cadillac and earned the car a 59% victory at Nice Price.
When it comes to cars, luxury, it seems, comes in all its forms. Heck, at one point you could even buy a fancy pants version of the plebeian Austin Mini. This car, the Riley Elf, offered a cabin fully trimmed in leather and burl, as well as – the luxury of every luxury – a standard heater.
Minivans have not escaped this kind of fancification either. Honda has long positioned the high-end Touring edition of its Odyssey MPV as a product close to luxury. The target audience for this model are not arrogant families whose kids don’t spill Cheerios all over the place or leave crayons on the padding in hot weather. No, the Touring is more for grandparents – those rare seniors who seek a little luxury when participating in the active lifestyle suggested by AARP ads, but who also need the space that offers. a van when the grandchildren come to visit.
The 1998 Mercury Villager Nautica we are looking at today is another example of a premium minivan. This one is also a blast from the past as it offers both old-fashioned features that are cool and functionality that is noticeably lacking.
There is an interesting story behind the development of the villager. It was the result of a joint effort between the Ford Motor Company and the Nissan Motor Company of Japan. Mercury received the Ford version while Nissan sold the near mirror image under the name Quest. Nissan did most of the work on the design of the pickup, and in fact the chassis is a development of Nissan’s Maxima platform while the engine is a version of that car’s VG30E 3.0-liter V6.
Areas Ford intervened in included the unique design elements of the Mercury – grille, taillights, and more. – as well as discussions on identifying the dashboard switches. Ford, he seemed to use words while Nissan liked pictograms. We had to find some kind of happy median.
The Mercury Villager base was not that sophisticated. Once the box was checked for the Nautica options package, however, it certainly stepped up its game. This package included leather seating surfaces with special sailboat embroidery on the back, Nautica-branded cabin mats and exterior badges, as well as – are you ready for this – a set of luggage.
This villager seems to have lost this baggage. All of the other Nautica amenities seem to be there, however. There are two really amazing aspects of this pickup truck. The first is this awesome digital dashboard that looks like a chef’s kiss from ’90s kitsch. The second is that this pickup has only 27,319 miles under its belt. Either it’s really miserable to drive, or someone predicted from the start that it would be worth something on the road if only they could keep it off that same road.
In fact, there are probably at least five reasons why this Mercury has been used so little, and now we are taking advantage of this lack of use in its current wonderful state. Being a ’98, this Nautica can sport a two-tone teal paint scheme. The original series of vans was only available in white on blue. This paint appears to be in great condition as are the alloy rims and even the plastic headlight lenses.
The shots keep coming inside too. There you will find nice padding and decent looking plastics. You also get front and rear climate controls and a multi-disc CD changer in the console. The 160-horsepower V6 is mated to a standard four-speed automatic transmission with a column offset that allows plenty of space between the seats.
Speaking of seats, there are three rows of them here, with the first two offering captains’ chairs with armrests. At first glance, each of these seats gets a cup holder, which was all the rage at the time.
One thing you will notice missing on this generation of villagers is a sliding door on the left side. It would come on the second gen, but on the first, even luxury housing couldn’t buy you that. On the bright side, this is one less opportunity for the carjackers.
The title is clear and the Carfax report Supplied by Seller shows a story of three owners with one of those who have owned the van for over 22 years. The asking price is $ 8,900, about eight times what most other Mercury Villagers are looking for in the classifieds. That being said, none of the others offer this condition nor so few miles under the belt. Fewer still are the Fancy Nautica, which, if you buy a Villager, is the one you want.
However, that doesn’t mean it’s a deal. It’s up to you. What do you think, is this villager worth that asking $ 8,900 while he is seated? Or, does that award just take the breath away.
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