Mark Schirmer, spokesman for the Lincoln and Mercury brands, told Automotive News yesterday that the end of April will see the last Mercury Sable roll off the assembly line at Ford's Chicago assembly plant. Earlier yesterday, Ford announced that the Taurus X, also produced at the Chicago assembly plant, would end production at the end of February.
The current Mercury Sable debuted in 2004 as the Mercury Montego. Current CEO Alan Mulally had the Montego name changed to Sable, a storied Mercury moniker, at the 2007 Chicago Auto Show. The original Mercury Sable was a huge seller for Ford when it debuted in 1986, but fizzled out when the company moved it to the Taurus platform in 1996 and tried to push it upmarket. It was discontinued in 2005, with the Montego and Milan debuting as its replacement.
The 2010 Mercury Sable was expected to debut with 2010 Ford Taurus at the 2009 North American International Auto Show. The death of the Sable indicates Ford is serious about its claims that the Mercury brand will become a "small car" company-the Mercury Milan, a platform-mate of the mid-sized Ford Fusion, will become the largest car offered by Mercury. Mercury's lineup still includes the Mariner and Mountaineer SUVs-but their ends may be in sight as well.
Source: Automotive News