The Breezeway Mercuries were one of the oddities of the sixties. Why Mercury chose to bring back this design that was used on the unsuccessful 1958-1960 Lincoln Continental is hard to figure. At least it was for me, as a kid at the time. By 1963, when the Breezeway reappeared, the 1960 Continental was already fading into automotive obscurity. Maybe Ford needed to amortize the tooling, given how few of the Lincolns were built?
As this shot by Tom Klockau in his 1960 Continental Mk V CC shows, it wasn’t just the Breezeway window that was recycled; a whole lot of the Lincoln’s design was, right down to the little slanty rear fins and the triple-taillight rear fascia. But the Breezeway window itself most likely was recycled completely.
It was all part of the on-going Mercury problem, with Ford endlessly wavering between it being a cut-rate Lincoln or tarted-up Ford. The 1961-1962 clearly fell in the latter category, sharing the Galaxie’s body, and looking very similar to it, excpet for some front and rear end re-modeling. 1961 Mercury CC here.
So in 1963, Mercury’s identity pendulum swung back towards the Lincoln, in a hybrid fashion. The front end evoked the current Lincoln Continental, with its bladed fender and electric razor grille.
But that slant-back roof and opening rear window’s origins were obvious. And refreshing the Breezeway was, actually and metaphorically, by 1964, it looked decidedly dated. Slant back rear windows were a hot item on the show circuit in 1956, but eight years was an eternity, design-wise, in the early sixties.
I only just noticed now that this Merc’s rear window was open; it would have made a nice shot from the rear through it into the interior. I’m often amazed at what I fail to see when I’m standing out on a busy road trying to dodge traffic to shoot a car.
The Montclair was the mid-level trim, comparable to a Ford Galaxie 500. A mild 250 hp two-barrel 390 V8 was standard on the big Mercuries, and what probably is powering this one.
It looks to be a fairly solid and clean original car, needing a bit of TLC. I can’t really comment on the asking price, as I don’t follow these things. How does that strike you?
Regardless of its design identity crisis—or because of it—Breezeways are always cool, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see it gone from this location soon.