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Home : Scrapbook : Roamin Angel Corner Index : 1968 Mercury Cougar

1968 Mercury CougarAnyone who is familiar with eBay will recognize the sentence, “Buy it now.” Any car guy will have also heard horror stories of those who bought a car sight unseen, only to get a rust bucket with a thick coat of paint. So when Don C. saw those words suddenly appear on an eBay listing for a ‘68 Mercury Cougar XR7 GT he had been eyeing, he was torn: to buy or not to buy. It had all started when he had decided that he needed something sportier and easier to handle than his ‘56 Lincoln Mark II. After he saw a fellow Roamin Angel’s Cougar described in a Roamin Angel Corner, he decided that was the car. He liked Ford pony cars, however Mustangs, the original pony cars, were far too pricey for a comparable model. So Cougars sounded great. Besides, Cougars had basically been the upscale version of Mustangs. Since he wanted a big block engine, he was told to look for the GT model. After checking on over a hundred ads for such Cougars, he had found either reasonably priced junk or over-priced ones in good condition. He happened upon one in Florida on eBay that was the deluxe XR7 GT model with a 390 CID engine, C6 auto trans and a 9" rear end. Wife Gloria said it was just too far away. Still, he kept an eye on it. Then the blue “Buy it now” button suddenly appeared with a price several thousand less than it should have been worth. Unfortunately, Don was almost out the door for an important appointment. Knowing better than to just leap, he quickly found an appraiser in Florida who, with the incentive of a bonus, went right out to see it. He got a call from the appraiser on his cell phone at the hospital. The Cougar had never been in an accident and was a sound car with a strong engine and trans. It was worth buying. So Don found out how to make his bid with his cell phone. Sight unseen, he had bought a car on eBay. But this one has a happy ending. With power front disc brakes and steering as well as air conditioning, the Cougar is easy to drive and handles well. The interior is in great shape, with air conditioning. Even the hidden headlights work perfectly. Although it no longer has the original color and vinyl roof, the repaint was prepped properly. Don can later do the dark metallic green paint with black top that he wants without worry of what he will find underneath the current black paint. Both Don and Gloria love their Cougar and can’t wait to take it on long cruises with fellow Roamin Angels. And this time, “Buy it now” has a happy ending.

This first-generation Cougar was based on the same platform as the Mustang, but was 3" longer. The GT package not only had the big-block engine, but better suspension and brakes.

1968 Mercury

The Cougar’s 390 CID engine was rated at 335 HP. However, this one has more, with a bigger cam, Weiand intake, aftermarket Holley carb and Mallory distributor.

The XR7 package included wood-grain interior, competition gauges with a tach, toggle switches and a T-handle shifter.

2010 © Ron Cherry

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