Muscle cars are no doubt scene stealers. They’re celebrities in their own right and such is the case for the 1967 Mercury Cougar. But of all the vintage automobiles there are, what makes this a bonafide stunner?
Known as Mercury’s very own pony car, a term given to affordable, compact, highly styled American cars with a sporty or performance-oriented image inspired by the Ford Mustang, the Cougar was first referred to by its internal code “T-7” which was used to seek the gap between the Mustang and the Thunderbird.
The idea behind the model and design was born in February of 1965 but it wasn’t until September 30, 1966 that sales begun. To say that it was a commercial success would be an understatement as it sold over 150,000 units which accounted for 40% of the company’s total sales for that year alone. In fact, it was named as Motor Trend’s car of the year, a feat and accolade that’s only given to the timeless greats. Plus, it fared really well and quite positively among the critics and reviewers from Car and Driver and Car and Life, naming it as the most pleasant among all pony cars in the market.
The 1967 Mercury Cougar came in only one body style which is a two-door hardtop no center or B-pillar. It was available in two models namely the base and the XR-7 with the latter more popular among collectors today but both having a performance package called the GT. As for engine options, buyers had the choice between a 200 hp (149 kW) 289 cu in (4.7 L) two-barrel V8 and 335 hp (250 kW) 390 cu in (6.4 L) four-barrel V8.
With a 111 inch wheelbase, it’s got 3 inches more than the Mustang. The upper control A-arm was mounted over with coil springs. While the rear came with leaf springs. It was also given softer suspension bushings for a smoother and softer ride. A two pod dash layout and overhead console is featured along the steering wheel alongside a simulated wood-grained dashboard, a T-type center automatic transmission shifter, black-faced competition instruments and toggle switches. The seats and interior finish was done in either vinyl or leather upholstery.
But when it comes to signature, the 1967 Mercury Cougar’s timeless feature would have to be its “electric shaver”. This split or divided grille treatment concealed both the headlights and the T-Bird sequential taillights giving it a unique flair.