40k Original Miles? 1953 Mercury Monterey

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There’s a lot to be said for buying a classic car that needs nothing. That is especially true when it is a low-mileage vehicle that falls within the affordable range. That is what this 1953 Mercury Monterey represents. With stunning paint and an immaculate interior, this is a car that its next owner could drive with their head held high. Adding to its appeal, the owner believes that the 40,000 miles shown on its odometer are genuine. The time has come for this impressive survivor to find a new home, so the owner has listed it for sale here on eBay. It is located in Springfield, Missouri, and while the bidding has hit $12,100, this remains short of the reserve. The owner also offers a BIN option of $16,500 for those who wish to avoid the whole auction scene.

The only word that I can think of to describe this Mercury is stunning. The owner says that it is no trailer queen, but it is a car that is a guaranteed head-turner. There are indications that it rolled off the line wearing Village Green paint, but it appears that the previous owner refinished it in Jade Green and Classic White in around 2009. The paint retains an incredible depth of color and shine, and I’m struggling to find any significant flaws. It has been applied over panels that are as straight as an arrow, while there appear to be no rust problems for the buyer to tackle. The panels look clean, and the owner states that the floors and rockers are solid. The glass is in excellent order, while the stainless trim and chrome shine beautifully against the green paint. The faultless wheel trims and whitewall tires add the perfect finishing touch to the exterior.

While the paint may not be original, it seems that the Mercury’s drivetrain is. The engine bay is occupied by a 255ci flathead V8 that sends its 125hp to the rear wheels via a three-speed manual transmission. Tipping the scales at 3,640lbs, the Monterey should be capable of covering the ¼ mile in around 20 seconds. The owner claims that this old gem has 40,000 genuine miles on the clock, but it seems that he has no evidence to verify this. That means that potential buyers will need to make their own assessment of the validity of the claim. He says that the car can be cold-blooded but that once it is up and running, it shows no problems or vices. The engine doesn’t smoke or make odd noises, the transmission is smooth, and the Monterey tracks straight and true on the road. The Mercury is described as a nice driver, and its overall condition would seem to support that claim.

We’ve reached the point where we need to assess this classic’s interior, and it is probably the highlight of this Mercury. The owner identifies a few faults, but none of them are deal-breakers. He has bypassed the heater, so it sounds like the buyer may need to repair or replace the core. The carpet is wrinkled on the driver’s side, and there are a couple of paint chips on the upper section of the driver’s door. The radio operates, but there is no sound. Beyond those issues, the interior is spotless. The seats and door trims show no evidence of wear or physical damage, while the same is true of the headliner. The dash has no problems, and the wheel is free from significant wear or cracks. If the buyer took this Monterey to a show or a Cars & Coffee as it currently stands, they could do so with pride in their heart.

This 1953 Mercury Monterey isn’t perfect, but it has a couple of characteristics that make it attractive to potential buyers. It is a solid and clean car that seems to need nothing cosmetically. Its few needs are the type that the buyer could tackle in a home workshop as time and circumstances permit. However, its greatest strength is that it is affordable. That helps to explain why it has already attracted twenty-three bids. Are you tempted to submit the twenty-forth?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. MattR

    Gorgeous. I would be proud to own this car.

    Like 8
  2. Bob C.

    I’d scoop it up if I could. Seems like an honest car at a good price.

    Like 5
  3. Mark

    Usually I only see these in the lighter colors such as yellow. But to see one in my favorite color green and how it sets all that chrome off is really sharp!
    Nice find. Someone is going to get a nice cruiser.

    Like 6
  4. Brad460Member

    Glad to see it still has the flathead. Not much power but oh so correct

    Like 5
  5. John N

    It is sold. Did anyone see the sale price?

    Like 0
    • AnthonyD

      Someone on here said $16,500.

      Like 0
  6. Jack Hammer

    I wish that they could design beautiful cars like this now.

    Like 4
  7. Mikefromthehammer

    Sold for $16.5K.

    Like 4
    • AnthonyD

      A beauty! At $16.5k, it’s a win win!

      Like 0
  8. Frank Armstrong

    A very fair price for a two door hardtop that nice. The new owner will really enjoy it. Total originality is a rare find. Nice to see a good value occasionally.

    Like 2
  9. Larry Ashcraft

    I have the same engine in my 1940 Ford coupe. I believe it is rated at 110 HP, not 125.

    My granddad had this same car, but a four door with an automatic. As a little kid, I remember it as a smooth runner and a nice highway driver.

    Like 1
  10. JP

    My dad had one the same exact car as this one!

    Like 0
  11. JP

    My dad had the same exact car!

    Like 0
  12. Frank

    Very nice looks like its been taken care of correctly. Rare car goes to some lucky owner. Hopefully not a Hot Rodder.

    Like 0
  13. Dave Peterson

    The coolest cat I knew as a squirt growing up was Robert Pittman. He shared a love of cars with my Dad and my Grandfather, and had their talents for building and living. He had one of these in a darker green that had the best sounding exhaust note I have ever heard. His life exploits mirrored his taste in cars as we got him a cherry TR3 from an Oak Park manse that we drove to Palo Alto. As we wind down these chapters, I’m glad to see these reminders of my 1950’s childhood. Someone of the 21st century will now write for their children. How cool is that?

    Like 3
  14. Charles F TuckerMember

    A better deal than the ’53 Chevy or the ’53 Buick for duffers like me who have neither the tools or experize or cash to “fix up”, let alone “restore” a ’50’s car. A beauty and it will keep up on the interstates. (Except maybe in Texas with an 80 mph limit where people drive 10% over – amazing what a Honda Civic will do!)

    Like 1
    • CaCarDude

      That sweet little Mercury might be challenged in Montana also with the posted 80 mph speed limit. This and the ’54 are my favorite year for the Mercury hardtops. Very nice find and bought at a great price!

      Like 1
  15. Robert Yeager

    I had the exact same car in hs, 58/59. Light green, dark green top. I hated the Mercomatic trans. All my buddies were laying rubber with their stick shifts. I didn’t realize what I had, traded it for a corvair in 60. Not very quick,but she would really roll on the highway. Beautiful car. The old song Desperado, “It seems to me that some fine things have been laid upon your table,but you always want the ones you can’t get”

    Like 1

    My first car. A yellow Montery with black top and yellow leather interior. Top speed, a little over 90 mph and about 13 MPG. Moved up to a ’56 Ford, next ’57 Merc and finally got into the bow ties and the power world with a georgeous ’59 Impala conv.

    Like 2
  17. bobhess bobhessMember

    The flatheads weren’t the fastest engines but Mercury changed that radically in the ’54 through ’56 models with the overhead V8s. Fortunately, they didn’t mess with the body style as these are good looking cars. Would have loved to had that V8 in my ’32 Coupe.

    Like 1
  18. Merrill Newman

    Has the very scace accessory steering wheel, a huge bonus!!

    Like 0
  19. bob y

    Coolest instrument panel/speedometer/controls ever!

    Like 0
  20. bob y

    I had this exact same car in high school 58/59. Light green/ dark green top. I hated the MercOMatic trans. All my buddies were laying rubber with their stick shifts. It was a beautiful car and I did not realize what I had. In 60 I traded it for a Corvair! I am reminded of the old song “Desperado”: “It seems to me some fine things have been laid upon your table, but you always want the ones that you can’t get.”

    Like 0

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