2009 Mercury Mariner Hybrid

Grille design

Hybrid horsepower

Room for five

Ride quality

Back glass

Cargo space

Interior materials

Electric power steering

Green zone

Transmission

Sync button

Power flow

Maps

On-screen keyboard

Weather information

Gas prices

Movie times

Sync phone system

Sirius satellite radio

MP3 CDs

USB port

Track display

Music Library

Audio system

The Mercury Mariner and stablemate the Ford Escape are two small SUV models from Ford, with identical drivetrain options. Ford began offering full hybrid versions of the cars for the 2005 model year.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
Styling differentiates the Mercury Mariner Hybrid with the Ford Escape Hybrid, such as the different grille designs.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The 2009 Mariner Hybrid gets a bigger engine than its predecessor, up to 2.5-liters from 2.3-liters. The addition of an electric motor gives the car a net 177 horsepower.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
As a small SUV, the Mariner Hybrid has room for five, plus cargo space, with a high driving position.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The Mariner Hybrid is top-heavy, so not designed for spirited driving. The suspension delivers a comfortable ride.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The back glass opens independently from the tailgate, making access easy.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
Opening the tailgate allows full access to the cargo area, a space that can be increased by folding down the second row seats.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The Mariner Hybrid isn't that much more luxurious than the Escape Hybrid, but the leather and chrome accents are nice.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The Mariner Hybrid uses electric power steering, helping out the fuel economy. Many new models are coming out with this feature.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
When the needle is in the tachometer's green zone, the engine has shut off, usually at a stop light or in traffic.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
As with most full hybrids, the Mariner Hybrid uses a continuously variable transmission, delivering smooth acceleration.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The voice button on the steering wheel activates the car's Sync system, which lets you play music just by saying an artist's name.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
This power flow animation shows the car working in hybrid mode, drawing power from both the engine and electric motor.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
Maps are rich and colorful, and include useful information such as traffic flow on major roads.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
We like this simple onscreen keyboard method of address entry.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
Sirius Travel Link brings in weather information, complete with a five day forecast and a weather map for the whole country.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
One key feature of Sirius Travel Link are fuel prices, which can be sorted by cheapest to most expensive.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The system also includes movie times, making it particularly easy to plan impromptu outings.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The Sync Bluetooth phone system is very good. It can import your phone's contact list and give you voice commands for calling friends.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
Sirius satellite radio is present, and includes little graphics for the current station.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The single disc slot can read MP3 CDs, but the interface merely shows folders.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The USB port can be used for a USB drive, an iPod, and many other kinds of MP3 players.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The track display shows various information about the currently playing music, and allows access to the Music Library.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
In the Music Library, you can choose to browse music by album, artist, and genre, whether your music is on an MP3 player or USB drive.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
The premium audio system in the Mariner Hybrid has seven speakers and a subwoofer, but isn't all that good.
Caption by / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CBS Interactive
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