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Lot 143

1956 Mercury Monterey 8-Passenger Station Wagon

  • Chassis no. 56ME89048M

Sold for $60,500

235 bhp, 312 cu. in. ohv V8 engine, three-speed Merc-O-Matic transmission, coil spring independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 118"

While Mercury never pursued the station wagon market to the same extent as its sibling Ford, the “Big M,” as it was nicknamed in 1956, made a bold showing in the segment. There were six- and eight-passenger models in the lower-mid-level Custom series, and a wood-trimmed eight-passenger style in upper-middle Monterey trim. While the bulk of the sales were of Customs, some 17,800 in all, the Monterey made a good showing with 13,280 units, not as good as Pontiac, whose wagons were cheaper, but much better than archrival Oldsmobile, which offered no wagons at all in 1956. Neither Dodge nor DeSoto even came close.

An original car in Verona Green with faux wood accent, this eight-passenger 1956 Mercury is a fine example of Ford Motor Company’s top-of-the-line station wagon. The body is in good condition with just a small ding in the right front door. The doors, liftgate and tailgate shut well, with good gaps. The paint exhibits a good shine, but the woodgrain shows modest wear and the fiberglass accent is checking. The tailgate has been repaired with new Di-Noc, which shows a few tears. The brightwork is generally excellent, but for a few dings in some of the stainless trim.

The interior is excellent original green and white vinyl, with matching headliner. The original body color rubber mats remain, with some tearing near the driver’s right foot. They are protected in front with dark gray throw mats. The dashboard is original and nicely detailed, but there is slight wear on the steering wheel. There are lap belts for two in the front.

The engine, painted silver, is clean but clearly used. It runs and drives well. The chassis and underbody are not restored, and exhibit original undercoating and some surface rust. The car wears 7.60-15 B.F. Goodrich tubeless wide whitewall tires, and there is a matching spare.

Accessories on the car, in addition to Merc-O-Matic, include power steering, power brakes, dual exhausts, windshield washers, spotlight mirror, radio and heater. It was purchased in Pennsylvania in May 2005. Mileage currently showing is slightly over 47,000. The car is registered with California year-of-manufacture plates ULD-786, which go with the car.

A very rare original example of the Big M, it will give a new owner much satisfaction.


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Alexander Weaver

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Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

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Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

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Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

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David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

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Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

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Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

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A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

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Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

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With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

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Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

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Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

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Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

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Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more