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The 1949 Mercury Was More Than A Batmobile

Topics:  Mercury, Batmobile

The 1949 Mercury Was More Than A Batmobile

William Jason (SubmitYOURArticle.com)
April 21, 2011


Thanks to Ford Motor, Batman had a Batmobile in 1949. The Batmobile for Batman's second serial run that year was a 1949 Mercury Convertible. It was a heavy but very powerful car that commanded attention. James Dean also used a customized version of it in Rebel Without a Cause. No wonder the 1949 Mercury was the most popular Mercury of all time. It was welcomed warmly by the public when it was released and it even helped Ford Motor outdo Chrysler as the second most successful automaker in 1951, next to General Motors.

The Mercury line was Ford Motors answer to the people's need for automobiles like the Lincoln vehicles, at a lower price. Mercury suffered a kind of brand identity crisis in its earlier years (it was founded in 1939) but it was able to make a mark in the automobile industry, selling 301,000 1949 models. It rose from its 16th position to the 6th best-seller. The Mercury came in four styles: Coupe, Converitble, Sport Sedan, and a two-door Station Wagon.

The 1949 Mercury had the similar body shell as the Lincoln models. But its distinct inverted bathtub style drew attention because it seemed colossal yet it was very elegant and streamlined. A chrome vertical bar grille was over the entire width of the car. There were also aligned parking lights. A vertical chrome bar divided the grille at the center, were the brand name just on the base of the hood. The Mercury emblem and the bright molding on the length of the car added nice finishing touches. Oval-shaped tail lamps, trademark of most classic cars, were the light sources from the rear portion.

The 1949 Mercury had used a flathead V-8 engine. The heads were bolted to the blocks with 24 bolts, instead of the studs and nuts. The flathead engine of the 1949 Mercury featured a Load-A-Matic distributor. It was driven off the front engine through a shaft. The shaft was located at the axis of the engine in a 90-degree angle. The belts and pulleys measured 5/8 wide. They became narrower in the 1950s. Also, the Load-A-Matic was changed to a Merc-O-Matic in the 1950s too. The chassis was different from the previous Mercury models. It had an independent front suspension and a Hotchkiss drive. From the old single transverse leaf, it had parallel and longitudinal leaf springs.

The celebrity status of the 1949 Mercury makes it a highly sought model for rebuilding these days.

Wiliam Jason is a muscle car fanatic and has been collecting and restoring them for the last 15 years, You can visit his website at http://musclecarmonster.com/

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