Autofrei Finds Its Dream Car

It’s a Mercury Lynx GS 5-Speed Diesel! Yes, this Mercury ticks every box and somehow it still comes up short.


You want obscurity? As if people still remember Ford’s 1980s world car, the Escort, nobody is going to use up potentially worthwhile brain cells on the Mercury Lynx.

It’s a survivor, speckled with rust, and there’s worn grey paint over a leisure suit Larry maroon interior. For every other urge to be contrary, there’s a hatchback, a manual transmission, and the wheezy old engine runs on trucker fuel.

You want perfect rims? look at those mismatched steelies! You want bumpers? You could use them as a bench. If what you want is a repulsive, generally terrible, totally unloved, rattly, dinky little shitbox, look no further than this crap can Mercury.

  It’s everything I claim I want in a car, but perfection isn’t about giving you exactly what you want. I pray that I never own this car.

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9 Responses to Autofrei Finds Its Dream Car

  1. Automobiliac says:

    Hilarious. Best post EVER.

  2. Automobiliac says:

    Is this part of the Occupy Bond Street protests?

    • Raphael Orlove says:

      Yeah, some protesters got confused and followed this thing up from Zuccotti park thinking it was an undercover WikiLeaks staff vehicle.

  3. Håkbråk says:

    Brilliant. I always thought the diesel-engined Escorts/Lynxes were mythical creatures. How could you tell it was an oil-burner? VIN decoder, or did the owner start it?

    Oh, btw, the steelies aren’t really mismatched, it’s just missing its baby hubcap on the rear wheel.

  4. George says:

    Those bumpers were the strongest ever built on any car anywhere: See the Lynx’s sister car, the Escort in a 5mph crash test sequence here.

    Theres also quite a following for the first generation Escort 1981 – 1990, and Lynx 1981 to 1987 (then replaced by the Tracer at Mercury) at various online groups, such as the Ford Escort Owner’s Association (

    The Diesel variants of the Escort / Lynx are good for 40 mpg and more, pretty good for 1980’s technology, especially now that car makers are producing 40 mpg cars as something new and different. Here’s the Yahoo group for the Diesel cars:

    You’ll find many 1st generation Escort / Lynx fans here too: – that the forum page for these cars, one of the best selling little grocery getters of the 1980’s, Ford’s first American-built front-wheel drive cars, and tuneable for economy or sport.

    I’m restoring one: A 1984 Lynx that is going to be a “clone” of a 1984 Ford Escort GT. Here’s the build-link:

  5. tj says:

    For an Eastcoast car 25 years old it looks like its held up better than most, better mileage than a prius, and i’m sure the escort/lynx was one of the best selling cars for almost 2 decades for no reason at all….. >_>

  6. Ricky says:

    I don’t know much about the diesel model Escort/Lynx except that they delivered exceptional fuel mileage, but the gas models were/still are great cars. I own two ’88 Ford Escorts. One of them has a 4 speed manual transmission linked to a 1.9 liter gas engine and consistently delivers 40+ MPG mixed city/highway. It’s also still running on the original engine at 24 years old/518,700 miles and has never been rebuilt. Maybe it’s not as stylish as some cars, but it performs the job it was built for VERY WELL. I think you’re assessment is wrong. I don’t think the millions of people who bought the Escort/ZX-2/Lynx/Tracer between ’81-’04 were all wrong.

  7. Antoine Car says:

    Those Escort and Mercury are my personal favorite 80 car why i learn to drive in a Mercury Lynx L hatchback 1986 yeah jsut like this but gasoline 1,9 L and 2 door insted of 4 and auto trans my my the memories are flooding back i lvoed that car simple cheap reliable Thanks for taking the time to take a few pictures brings back the time i drove my Lynx L

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