Because the two vehicles are identical except for minor trim differences, the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid boasts the same high fuel economy, driving range, and clean emissions ratings as the Ford Escape Hybrid. Estimated to achieve 33-mpg in the city and 29-mpg on the highway (city estimates are higher because, as a full hybrid vehicle, this SUV can operate solely on battery power at lower speeds), the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid meets California's Advanced Technology Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle standards.
A continuously variable transmission helps to optimize fuel economy and acceleration, sending power to all four of the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid's 16-inch, five-spoke alloy wheels. A light foot on the throttle and speeds of less than 25 mph result in electric-only motoring, conserving fuel and helping to boost city fuel economy figures.
That's plenty of coin for a compact SUV, especially when it can take half a decade to recoup that initial investment at the gas pump. The bigger benefit is ultra-low emissions from a vehicle designed to carry plenty of people and their stuff through storms and on light-duty dirt trails. If you want to be green but need lots of space, the 2006 Mercury Mariner Hybrid fills the bill.
Photos courtesy of Ford Motor Company