Used 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis Sedan

1998 Mercury Grand Marquis
List price range
1998 Mercury Grand Marquis

Pros

  • Last of the full-size, rear-drive, road hogs. It also packs a lot of bang for the buck, including a V8 engine and extensive standard equipment list.

Cons

  • Gas hog.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

The Mercury Grand Marquis, Lincoln Town Car and Ford Crown Victoria are the last American sedans to feature rear-wheel drive. This is, of course, important to more than just the taxi cab companies, police departments and limousine outfitters that prefer rear-wheel drive products; it is important to the nation as a whole.

Why, you ask? Because this is a nation that was built on the back of the rear-drive sedan. Such cars shuttled families hither and yon across the American landscape for years before vehicles like the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Isuzu Rodeo were even thoughts in a design chief's mind. Cars like the Mercury Grand Marquis were the backbone of revered-but-lost institutions such as the drive-in theater. Only a car this large could hold four of your friends in the trunk, and weekend getaways at the cabin; before the Ford Explorer came to town, people actually had to tow their camper with cars. We know it sounds crazy, but now that there is only one domestic manufacturer of these land yachts we find ourselves secretly praying for their continued survival.

Fortunately for us, Mercury is relying on more than our prayers to insure the durability of this vehicle species. This year sees a new round of changes to the Grand Marquis that are destined to keep it in the gene pool a bit longer. The first and most notable change is found at the rear axle. This year, Mercury replaces the Marquis' rear suspension with a Watt's linkage unit that gives the rear axle 400 percent greater stiffness than the axle found at the back of last year's model. This, of course, means that the Grand Marquis tracks through corners better than before, providing more lateral stability for enthusiastic drivers. A change to the steering gear means that more drivers may feel comfortable tackling corners at higher speeds, better on-center feel results in more controlled direction changes. All-speed traction control debuts this year as well, negating most of the advantages that front-wheel drive cars like the Buick LeSabre may hold over the Grand Marquis inpoor weather conditions. The final changes to the 1998 Grand Marquis are on the inside, a new instrument panel makes it easier for drivers to read pertinent gauges.

Despite our fears to the contrary, we are certain that the Grand Marquis will continue to have a fruitful existence. There are enough people out there who are not willing to sacrifice the benefits of rear-wheel drive, such as better handling and increased high-speed stability, for the occasional convenience that front-wheel drive cars offer in inclement weather. Those people can do themselves a favor by stopping by a Mercury dealership and checking out the great value that the Grand Marquis has to offer.

1998 Highlights

The last of the American rear-drive sedans gets substantial improvements this year, including a new instrument panel, new steering gear and an improved ride, thanks to a Watt's linkage suspension. All-speed traction control debuts this year as well.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

A "new" used car
ed,07/25/2015
Update again: Another 8k miles, no repairs or complaints so far! I may do a coolant flush and fuel filter soon. Idles nicer than a new car I rented. They asked me to update again. Now at 174K daily driven it is still doing fine. I got original Ford brake pads on Ebay for $10 (new old stock from 98!) and the dust issue is solved. Stops great too! Aside from tire rotations and oil changes, no issues! Update: She now has 165K miles. One slight issue was the starter didn't work one morning. After inspection I realized the starter key terminal was corroded, and I replaced with a Motorcraft starter for $100 and 2 hours of work on a tight bolt. Even if a shop did it its not an expensive repair. Still gets 22Mpg and daily driven. Original Tan paint is still in very good condition if it is detailed. Leather drivers seat is starting to show some wear. Neighbor now owns a 2002 GMQ and is very satisfied too! Soon I'll change the coolant and 4 quarts of trans fluid. My only complaint is the wheels seem to attract brake dust, but I was told by the Ford dealer to use only the FORD OEM (not motorcraft) pads to stop dusting. That is what they install on those vehicles for a service. I used Thermoquiet which are great except for the dust. I got this car for $800 with about 135K miles. I put on about 12K issue free miles already, my neighbor has a brand new car in that timeframe, and it spent considerable time in the dealer, including fuel pump issues leaving him stranded. He said when its time to sell a used Panther is in his future. I am handy with cars and replaced some things, maybe more than I had to. I changed all belts and hoses, but honestly the originals were still very good. The intake manifold MUST be inspected and replaced if original. If there is a plastic tube behind the alternator just swap it. It causes everything from misfires to engine failure. It could be a DIY job, plenty of good tutorials. Pull the coil plug closest to the thermostat to check for leaks. Ball Joints wear at high mileage too. Electronics on this car are very reliable. I did a fluid and filter change on the trans, it shifts like new. This car easily has another 100+K miles left, millions of cabs have proven that. Just a matter of holding on to an older car. Handling is a bit boaty(but controlled) but improved somewhat with KYB gas adjust shocks. Mine does not have the sport/handling package, those have dual exhaust, stiffer suspension parts, bushings, etc, air suspension(which isn't expensive to service on these cars) and distinctive wheels. 2.71 gears give it 22mpg combined. I do have lots of nice features like a digital dash, cruise, auto dim mirror and power everything. I installed heated seats. These cars (pre 03) can't have a double din radio unless you replace the duct with an 03+ one. I wanted a newer panther but the price was too good to pass up. I'm very satisfied, and was close to leasing something that would have set me back thousands in this timeframe. Check the frame for major rust too, it likes to rust out under the air conditioner dryer on the passenger side. I put some fluid film there so there won't be an issue.
Built to last
Tony,02/23/2010
Bought this car with 85,000. I use it for commuting back and forth to work, approximately 25 miles each way. I now have 118000 miles on it and I can honestly say it is the most comfortable, best handling and quite car I have ever owned. Mileage is around 22 mpg in mixed traffic. Very adaquate power and have had no mechanical problems beyond normal wear. I know this has the old man stigma but for the price this is the best car you can buy.
chaddoman's 98 is a definite winner
chaddoman,03/06/2006
Bought 3 yrs. ago from a good neighbor. New Michelins (white-walled) improved handling significantly from 'average/lacking' to 'very good'. Gas mileage exactly 27 mpg at 75 mph (pleasantly surprising). (I use Mobil- 1 synthetic oil.)Ranges 13 to 16 in town - a little disappointing. Replaced (slight-leaking) right rear axle seal at 48,000 miles during brake change. Otherwise extremely reliable. Very quiet at highway speeds. Very good braking. We'll be buying a new/newer one soon. Also own much less- reliable and highly-expensive (operational and repair), dealer- gouging Infinity Q45. Sure, it's more exciting to drive, BUT, BUT, BUT..! (We'll soon be selling the 'Q' to buy another Marquis-LS.)
98 Grand Marquis
george49024,07/27/2013
I bought the car for $2000 with 86,000 miles on it. Great car. At about 118k the plastic intake got a crack in it causing the engine to quickly over heat and warp the heads. This is a problem with these motors. You can look it up on the net. The same motors are found in the Crown Vics and the 8cy mustangs. I replaced the motor with another one with about 118k on it which I replaced with a after market intake manifold made out of aluminum instead of plastic. It ran until about 136k it was totaled in a 5 car highway accident during a ice storm. I took kidding about it being a "grandpa" car but I loved the car. Would buy again but replace the intake manifold. Best 2 grand ever spent.
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Features & Specs

MPG
15 city / 22 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
200 hp @ 4250 rpm
MPG
15 city / 22 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
200 hp @ 4250 rpm
See all Used 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis Sedan features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    0

More about the 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis
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Should I lease or buy a 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Mercury lease specials
Check out Mercury Grand Marquis lease specials