The station wagon (or ‘estate’ to our European readers) is all but dead in the United States. The unstoppable rise of the SUV has meant literally every car now has the same shape, but back in the late 1970s enormous wagons were still part of the automotive furniture. Literally in some cases, clad as they were in ‘wood’. Or something that looked a bit like it.
This particular ‘wood’ clad wagon is a 1977 Mercury Cougar Villager, as built by TLCB regular Ralph Savelsberg in Miniland scale. The fourth generation of Ford’s mid-size sedan/wagon, the Cougar Villager was pitched in-between Ford and Lincoln, powered exclusively by V8 engines, and named after both a mountain lion and a peasant.
Such a confused brief probably accelerated the demise of such cars (and the entire Mercury brand), but nevertheless the Cougar – including its Villager offshoot – was a popular family hauler in the late ’70s. And infinitely more interesting than a modern SUV.
Jump back to when family cars could be more than a high-riding blob via the link in the text above, whilst we see if we can get hold of some ‘wood’ decals to enliven the SUVs in the office car park.