One owner from new, original California Black Plate
1946 Mercury Model 72 Coupe
Chassis no. 99A119674
This 1946 Mercury is offered by its original owner, World War II veteran Jim Haddad. One of the first post-war Mercury cars produced at the Ford plant in Richmond, California, the Coupe was delivered through Foothill Motors of Pasadena on October 15, 1946. As Mr. Haddad was just then completing his military service, his mother took delivery. Three weeks later, the car was reassigned to the newly discharged vet.
Due to parts shortages, the Mercury was received without a spare tire or accessoriesbut did come with still-evident mismatched interior rear-window frames. The correct radio, heater and twin spotlights were added as they became available.
A new ¾-race flathead V8 engine was installed in 1952, after the original engine self-destructed in New Mexico during the Habbad's honeymoon trip. (Later, Mr. Haddad would discover the Mercury was built with a 4.11:1 rear axle, instead of the standard 3.54:1 ratio"at 70mph with 4.11s, disaster awaited," he says.)
Mr. Haddad drove the Mercury until 1970, then retired it to his home garage. There it remained until 1999, when Mr. Haddad embarked on a "complete and thorough undertaking" that resulted in the essentially fully restored car offered here.
The rust-free Coupe was repainted in its original 1946-only Dynamic Maroon and the underside was re-coated to factory spec in 2001. All chrome was renewed and the stainless polished. A new LeBaron-Bonney interior replaced the original. New wiring was installed.
In 2002, the engine was refreshed with new bearings and chrome rings (which, Mr. Haddad notes, haven't yet been run enough to seat). The chassis received new brakes and bearings. A 3.78 rear axle replaced the original 4.11.
The fully refurbished Mercury was displayed, by invitation, at the 2003 Ford Motor Company 100th Anniversary celebration at Dearborn. While in Michigan, the car collected first place awards at two club meets. It has since been featured in "Hemmings Classic Car" and other publications.
After sixty-four years of judicious ownership, Mr. Haddad has decided to part with his Mercury. "I fell in love with this car the first time I saw it. Someone else should have that opportunity now," he says. Full documentation of the car's unique history will accompany it.