1970 Mercury Cyclone
If you don’t think that “American Muscle Car” belongs in the same sentence as “Mercury,” because it’s outperformed by other brands like Chevrolet, Ford, or Dodge. Granted, Mercury isn’t the most powerful vehicle brand out there; but what it lacks in performance, it makes up in style, handing, and a fancy interior design.
The 1970 Mercury Cyclone rolled out in the same decade as other Mercury models like Comet. It competed with Ford Torino, setting itself apart with a unique design. The Spoiler model was a true upgrade to Mercury’s previous cars that had a reputation for being below the average standards in comparison to other makers’. The 1970 “coke bottle” design was a sporty look that matched the Cyclone Spoiler’s 370 horse power 429-cid V8 engine running at 5,400RPM. It was the same exact engine as the Thunderbird. Surprisingly enough, the Cyclone GT had a weaker engine: a 250 horse power 351 Cleveland V8 – a two-barrel engine. On the road, neither was a pony; it performed on par, if not better than, Mercury’s other line-ups like the Comet mentioned earlier. The Cyclone Spoiler is a rare species: it weighed 4,100 lbs and there were under 1,700 of them built in total.
The transmission is a 3-speed rear-wheel drive automatic. Current drivers say that the V8 engine doesn’t really hit you until you put your 1970 Mercury Cyclone in second gear, but when it kicks in, it really kicks in. With front and rear wheel breaks, the vehicle offered standard stopping capability as other cars – nothing truly special. Mercury put nothing but the best wood interior in their fancy lineup. The luxurious comfort of operating this car has frequently been compared to driving a Buick – now that’s not too shabby for a 40-year-old car. Quick steering makes the 1970 Mercury Cyclone perfect for curvy roads. It’s no surprise this car received the 1970 “Car Of The Year” award from Motor Trend.
Although the car was a bit overpriced if you compare its brand-new dollar value strictly to performance, its swag was top of the line: you could buy a factory-fresh 1970 Mercury Cyclone for under $4,500 with some accessories, but it could only do 0-60 mph test in 6.2 seconds. Other cars – even from mid sixties – did this benchmark better by over 10%. But Mercury just had to have a muscle car lineup, so that’s how the 1970 Mercury Cyclone came about.