Unless we’re mistaken, the Mercury Marauder was the last Ford sedan powered by a Mach 1 Mustang Cobra engine. Built only for the 2003 and 2004 model years, it was the uncrowned king of the highway.
The Marauder traces its roots to about 1990. Ford saw that people weren’t buying boxy, body-on-frame executive sedans with RWD. They just seemed too old. So the Crown Victoria was given this rounded, streamlined shape without a big grille, basically like the Taurus.
The white Crown Victoria police interceptors are like Star Wars stormtroopers. But the Marauder is Darth Vader himself, still simplistic in design, but all-powerful. Like that 1996 Chevy Impala SS we recently talked about, the Mercury sports sedan was made up of parts borrowed from other cars.
The Crown Victoria LX Sport donated the chassis, the suspension comes from the durable P71 interceptor, while the face comes from the Mercury Grand Marquis, but made sportier. All this would be nothing without the engine. Normally, you could find these RWD sedans powered by 4.6-liter V8 producing around 200 horsepower, but the Marauder had a Cobra.
Yes, that’s the four-valve V8, found in the cool Mustangs of that era. It made 302 horsepower and sounded epic. The 0 to 60 mph sprint took 7.5 seconds, which isn’t that fast. Sounds like something you want to beat on, like you do a Crown Vic. But the problem is Marauder parts are rare, and the engine isn’t super-durable.
Of course, no such problems exist in the digital world, where artist Oscar Vargas decided to revive the 2004 Mercury sports sedan. His creation is just epic if you’re into American four-doors because it seems so believable. It’s like being in a dream world where the Lincoln Continental is still around and Ford makes a version with the Coyote 5.0 under the hood instead of an EcoBoost.
The next-gen Marauder rendering only borrows some styling elements from the Continental, like the headlights. The bodywork is like a low, sporty Crown Vic built for the track, while the bumper is unmistakable a Mercury piece.