Concept Classic: 1961 Mercury Palomar – Holy Popemobile! Finally, A Mercury I Wish My Dad Had Bought

Mercury Palomar Rear@62Web22

At last, a Mercury that I would have been proud to ride high and mighty in. This is almost unbelievable: the rear section of the Palomar wagon’s roof slid forward, like the Studebaker Wagonaire, but simultaneously, the forward-facing third row seat elevated like a pope-mobile, and a windshield even popped up, from somewhere. A genuine flying-bridge Mercruiser. Now this would have been the way to take the Niedermeyers to Colorado! 

Mercury Palomar 1961 _concept_car_01

Here’s a side view. Curiously, it’s a two-door hardtop wagon, which only adds to its exotic appeal. It looks rather Chrysler-ish. And I’m wondering if the Mercury designers stole this idea from the Bulgemobile Company.

Mercury Palomar 1961  [1]

The front is almost a dead ringer for the 1962 Dodge Custom 880, except those headlights which the Ford stylists filched from a German Taunus, undoubtedly.

mercury palomar closeup_2

According to, the Palomar was considered for 1966 production, but some dull executives gave it the thumbs down. Booh! Where’s the sense of adventure? Of course, maybe Studebaker’s less than stellar success with the Wagonaire might have had some influence.  Sadly, the Palomar was destroyed in a fire that engulfed the Ford Rotunda building.