Mercury is a defunct division of the U.S. automobile manufacturer Ford Motor
Company. Marketed as an entry-level premium brand for nearly its entire
existence, Mercury was created in 1938 by Edsel Ford to bridge the price gap
between the Ford and Lincoln vehicle lines. In a similar context, Buick and
Oldsmobile served the same role within General Motors (between Chevrolet and
Cadillac) while Mercury competed against the namesake brand of Chrysler (above
Plymouth and Dodge, but below Imperial).
From 1945 to 2010, Mercury formed half of the Lincoln-Mercury division; under both brands, the combined division created a sales network distinct from Ford. Lincoln-Mercury briefly expanded under the Edsel (1958–1960) and Merkur (1985–1989) brands. To reduce development and production costs, Mercury vehicles shared manufacturing commonality with either Ford or Lincoln (or both), serving as counterparts for vehicles from both divisions.
In the summer of 2010, Ford Motor Company announced the discontinuation of the Mercury division as it consolidated its marketing and engineering efforts on the Ford and Lincoln brands. Production of Mercury vehicles ceased in the fourth quarter of 2010. At the time, Ford sold Mercury vehicles in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Middle East. The final Mercury automobile, a 2011 Mercury Grand Marquis, rolled off the assembly line on January 4, 2011.
Although the final vehicle of the division was produced in 2011, Mercury remains an active and registered trademark owned by Ford Motor Company (to at least 2025).