2006 Milan New Car Test Drive
The 2006 Mercury Milan is a new midsize sedan, and it's the best car Mercury has had for many years. Designed to compete with the Toyota Camry and other midsize family cars, the Milan is based on the superb Mazda 6 platform. It's smaller than the Montego and will be Mercury's entry-level car from now on. It shares much in common with the new Ford Fusion.
This Mercury has that 'just right' look about it, and it's about time. It's one of the most stylish, contemporary Mercury sedans since the first one showed up in 1939. Perhaps it's not as adventurous in design as the 1957 Turnpike Cruiser with its cantilevered roof and power rear window.
But the new Milan is able to swallow and nestle at least four normal Americans inside, with more room here and there on the spec sheet than some very expensive cars. The interior is inviting and comfortable, the materials are very good, it's easy to use, and the detailing is better than average. We liked the contrast stitching in the seats. Fold-down rear seats add an extra measure of space and utility.
The Milan is available with four-cylinder and V6 engines. The V6 gets an EPA-rated 29 mpg on the highway and comes with a six-speed automatic transmission, a rarity in this class, that gives both better acceleration and better fuel economy than a five-speed automatic.
The 2006 Mercury Milan comes in two versions, a basic four-cylinder package and a loaded V6 Premier model. Options packages, however, make it possible to have almost any combination you want. For instance, you can order a four-cylinder automatic Premier.
The base Milan ($18,995) comes with a 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine and a choice of five-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission. Standard features include air conditioning, a premium audio system with AM/FM/CD/MP3 player, an analog clock, an overhead console with sunglasses holder, a covered flip-up storage bin on top of the dash, six-way power driver's seat with manual lumbar, 16-inch wheels, speed control, tilt and telescoping steering wheel with secondary controls, and remote keyless entry.
An optional Safety and Security package offers side-impact air bags (for torso protection), side curtain airbags (for head protection), anti-lock brakes (ABS), and a perimeter anti-theft system. Other options include a power moonroof and an AM/FM/CD6/MP3 Audiophile system with eight speakers.
The Milan Premier ($21,995) comes with a 221-horsepower 3.0-liter V6, a six-speed automatic, anti-lock brakes, and 17-inch machined aluminum wheels as standard equipment. Leather seating surfaces and the premium six-disc CD changer with MP3 and six speakers come standard.
The Comfort package includes a leather-wrapped steering wheel with secondary audio, speed and climate controls, automatic electronic climate control, auto headlamps, fog lamps, puddle lamps, and an auto dimming interior rearview mirror with compass. Options include traction assist ($95), heated seats ($295), power moonroof ($795), the Audiophile system with eight speakers ($420).