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Hello all! Marauder307 here…I thought I would make a proper introduction.

I’ve actually been a Mopar fan most of my life; still am, to a limited extent. I don’t know about the new stuff coming out these days, but I remember and revere the heyday of Dodge from the late ‘60s, and the Charger in particular, although I like the other Mopar
offerings of the time as well.

I used to own a Charger…well, a Charger in name anyway. It was a 1985 model, and those of you who remember know that those cars were pretty much a disgrace to the Charger name. I didn’t care at the time; I was young and accompanyingly stupid, it was bright red, had two doors and a hatchback, and it was fine for me. Lasted most of my college career.

In January of 1993, my grandfather passed away. When I tried to take the then-95,000-mile Charger on the rush trip home, the engine overheated, the head gasket packed it in, and the car dropped dead. In the preceding 3 months, I’d had that old monster in the shop literally every 2 weeks for something; those cars were not designed to be long-lived, and I’d pushed that old sucker a LOT farther than it should have gone. A friend’s Mustang LX 5.0 picked up the slack that night, and I’ve been a Ford man ever since: my grandfather’s Tempo, a ’94 Ranger XLT, a ’93 Mustang LX 5.0, a brief and disastrous flirtation with a ’68 Torino, which led to a trade-in for an ’01 Mustang V6 Premium coupe. For a while I had both the ’93 and the ’01 in the driveway. In 2003, I traded both away for the car that has defined my screenname: A 2003 Mercury Marauder, big, black, and lots of attitude. That car has since been somewhat enhanced; the brakes and suspension are, um…not exactly stock. I’m waiting on the end of the warranty to get into the more substantial upgrades. :D

I’m over at mercurymarauder.net. We’ve reviewed the new Charger over there; I will confess, I’ve been among its bigger detractors. Even referred to it as “an abortion” of the Charger’s good name. But I finally saw my first one in the sheetmetal yesterday. For those of you in the St. Louis area, Southtown Dodge has 2 on the lot: Both R/Ts, one crème, one in a dark blue color. I’ll admit it, the dark blue one looks pretty damn good.

I stopped in and looked it over. It was up on raised display area; not a stand or turntable, but still in a spot where I couldn’t get it down and take it for a thrash. The salesguy still let me get in and fire it up tho.

The interior’s not too bad, actually. Fewer gauges than the Marauder; how do you guys tell your oil pressure and volts? Couldn’t find the cruise control at first; the dealer showed it to me, and I don’t like the location; it was blocked from sight completely by the upper left arm of the steering wheel. The only real serious objection I can make to the interior is the trunk; less room than the Marauder, but you guys DO get the split folddown seats…thumbs-up there. Overall, not so bad…I coulda got comfortable in there…

The exterior’s passable, but I still can’t understand why Dodge didn’t simply keep the body from the 1999 concept Charger. Now, THAT was a slick bodystyle…the taillights on this one look too much like a Mitsubishi Galant, but I CAN see a faint passing resemblance to the 1968 Charger Corvette-style lights in the lenses.

It’s hard to be much harder than that on the styling though. The new GTOs don’t look like they used to; the Marauder looks nothing like the last 1970 X-100 to roll off the line.
Hell, even I don’t look like I used to thirty-plus years ago....and I consider that a good thing…!

On to the drivetrain. The Hemi’s coming along well enough, I guess; I’ve heard numerous internet rumors that the Hemi-equipped Rams were having serious problems with connecting rods, pistons, and the rest of the internals. There’s a few guys over on MM.net that grumble that our engines (the Mustang Mach I’s 4.6L DOHC 32V) are hemis too, but we just don’t get the publicity. I personally dunno, and I’m not going to touch off a superheated debate about whether the new Hemi’s really a Hemi, or whether Ford engines are better than Dodge, or whatever direction the debaters want to take it.
Suffice it to say, the new Hemi looks pretty good in the engine compartment, and it looks like most of the stuff you’d want to service yourself is accessible, if a little tight.

I really like the 5-speed Autostick; wish I could graft it onto the Marauder. But you guys are getting badly shortchanged on the rearend gearing! The Marauder comes stock with 3.55s, and a number of folks on the MM.net website have changed theirs out to 4.10s. One guy’s swapped out for 4.56s, but he does a lot of heads-up dragracing with his particular car. So why the hell is Dodge sticking to that 2.82 ratio? Even the SRT-8s are only getting 3.06s…WTF? C’mon Dodge, bring back our old faithful Dana 60 rearend with the Drag Pak gearing!

The bottom line here is this: It’s not as bad as I thought. I’m too far in the hole on my Marauder or I’d seriously consider a trade. It actually looks and sounds like a decently capable car, and us Marauder guys will race you anytime and smile…win, lose, or draw!

Thanks for reading.
:D
 

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My brother wants a marauder. do you know where i can get one for the cheap?
 

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I read your whole post and I respect it and yourself 100%. However, the maurader is an upscale marque? (sic) The Dodge Charger is as it sits ..a... Charger. Compare your car to a Charger SRT-8. Its only fair. Serious.

Even if the Maurader came with the Cobras BLOWER you'd still be down 35 HP..not to mention looks, cult following, family (you gotta admit ford ppl have nothing on your Mopar buddies) and the SRT=8s will..WILL outsell any Maurader atleast 5:1.

Another thing, high gearing is a "silicone" for power. You can build cars many ways from scratch. If I can beat your car with 2.80 gears and get better gas mileage then thats great. If I want 3.55s or 4.56s??? (why..)..then Iam throwing the whole cars engineering out the window.

Basicaly there is no comparison between a black taxi cab with a mustang engine VS a brand new Hemi powered LX car.

No pun.
 

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marauder307 said:
C’mon Dodge, bring back our old faithful Dana 60 rearend with the Drag Pak gearing!

The bottom line here is this: It’s not as bad as I thought. I’m too far in the hole on my Marauder or I’d seriously consider a trade. It actually looks and sounds like a decently capable car, and us Marauder guys will race you anytime and smile…win, lose, or draw!

Thanks for reading.
:D
Welcome, good post...recently DCx stopped using Dana rears because of quality issues...

A little story, I used to be into Suzuki Swift Gt's even built several with JDM engines, modified suspensions...the whole compact scene. I was always a tiny bit envious of the Austrailians, they would have get togethers with WRX owners. Go to the track, do some drag racing, cruise around, all that stuff... We should do the same here....Marauder and Charger get togethers, a little friendly rivalry never hurt anyone... ;) could be fun, after all the Mustang guys have a rivalry with the Buick GN guys...
 

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JohnnyG said:
You can find alot of mauraders at the junk yard sale,or police auction. :D
LOL...not funny
 

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Discussion Starter #7
RonRacer said:
My brother wants a marauder. do you know where i can get one for the cheap?
Check out mercurymarauder.net. We track Marauders for sale over there...there's one or two on Ebay; saw a post about a 2003 that only had 400 mi. total. The prices are staying kinda high; there's a lot of folks that are speculating on the future value. The cars aren't quite old enough yet to really be considered collectibles...although in a few years, they'll take on the same status as the mid-90's Impala SS's.
 

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RonRacer said:
LOL...not funny
I don't think so either.

There's been a lot of folks out there, not educated on the MMs, who simply dismiss the car out of hand as a G-Mark with an engine. Not true at all. About the only thing we really share with the G-Mark is the grille...after that, the rest is either unique to the car (interior/gauges, rims, rearend/diff. gears, exhaust and tips, front and rear fascias) or borrowed from either the Mustang Mach I (engine) or the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor (suspension, brakes, tail clip, transmission). Parts-bin engineering? You bet!

But what a parts bin!

And the tuner market has gotten in on the act. There are three different shops producing tuner Marauders (Reinhart Automotive, Trilogy Automotive, and Kenny Brown). One shop in NJ, VT Engines, offers a tuner package for the cars that incorporates a 5.0 stroker engine pushing out 550 hp. At that number, we're no longer worried about Corvettes....

...now we're hunting Vipers.
 

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marauder307 said:
At that number, we're no longer worried about Corvettes....

...now we're hunting Vipers.
Thats really not funny
 

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Bigdeal,I can put a high performance engine in most anything ,and it will be fast,doesn't mean its going to look good or handle good!! The new vette and viper will kick your butt all day long,and you better hope you don't take on one in the corners,you might flip over trying to keep up with their g's their pulling in the turns!! That's almost funny,correction---THAT IS VERY FUNNY!!!!LOL YOURSELF!! :rolleyes:
 

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I hope the Chargers ARE faster, and I hope they make a gazzillion Chargers, and I hope everyone in the world buys one except me. I bought my Marauder because it was unique, much like Johnnys posts. How unique? My sign in name pretty much sums it up. Someone famous once said something worth quoting. I can't remember it. Ponder that, enjoy your cars, be safe out there.
 

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TurboAWD said:
I read your whole post and I respect it and yourself 100%. However, the maurader is an upscale marque? (sic) The Dodge Charger is as it sits ..a... Charger. Compare your car to a Charger SRT-8. Its only fair. Serious.

Basicaly there is no comparison between a black taxi cab with a mustang engine VS a brand new Hemi powered LX car.

No pun.
The first part needs to be corrected. Compare the Marauder to the 300C, both of those are upscale. Factory vs factory, those two would give very similar performance.

The last part of your post is ... totally messed up. The marauder was never a taxi cab or a fleet vehicle. The crown vic was. More importantly, you act like the LX car won't be a taxi. Where do you think all those retired police Chargers are going to end up in 5 years?

Please understand, I'm not defending the Marauder. I just think it needs to be bashed in logic and fact, not just 'because it isn't a mopar.' I will always consider the Marauder a marketing gaffe by Ford that resulted in an overpriced and under-performing vehicle. Sure, it can be fixed by aftermarket mods (making it that much more expensive) but at least it looks darn good.
 

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JohnnyG said:
You can find alot of mauraders at the junk yard sale,or police auction. :D
The Marauder is actually selling used what they were selling for new. The dealers cannot keep the used ones on the lot.
 

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Raxstone said:
The first part needs to be corrected. Compare the Marauder to the 300C, both of those are upscale. Factory vs factory, those two would give very similar performance.

The last part of your post is ... totally messed up. The marauder was never a taxi cab or a fleet vehicle. The crown vic was. More importantly, you act like the LX car won't be a taxi. Where do you think all those retired police Chargers are going to end up in 5 years?

Please understand, I'm not defending the Marauder. I just think it needs to be bashed in logic and fact, not just 'because it isn't a mopar.' I will always consider the Marauder a marketing gaffe by Ford that resulted in an overpriced and under-performing vehicle. Sure, it can be fixed by aftermarket mods (making it that much more expensive) but at least it looks darn good.
You mean like this:
 

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I guess I should introduce myself too. I am a lover of rear-wheel-drive V-8 American cars. I really like the SRT-8 versions of each of Chryslers cars. If I had to do it again right now it would probably be a SRT-8 Charger. However, I don't need that now with what I have. I am not here to flame anyone. I have been over on the 300C forums for a while and have been accepted as a member over there. I have hung out with the local 300C club here. We are working on a "Big Car Shootout" with the Marauders, Impallas and the 300C, Magnums, and Chargers. If there is anything you want to know about ours ask. Do not assume what you may have read about our cars. We have Marauders that run anywhere from the mid 15's to mid 11's. Our cars unlike yours have many mods we can chose from. I'm sure in time your cars will have more mods but until then we and the Impallas will own you. Anyway, good luck with you cars and your site.
 

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10f328 said:
I hope the Chargers ARE faster, and I hope they make a gazzillion Chargers, and I hope everyone in the world buys one except me. I bought my Marauder because it was unique, much like Johnnys posts. How unique? My sign in name pretty much sums it up. Someone famous once said something worth quoting. I can't remember it. Ponder that, enjoy your cars, be safe out there.
This is true. Our production numbers were very limited. Here is a break down of our cars:
2003 Production:
328 Blue
417 silver
7094 Black

2004 Production:
980 Dark Toredor Red
997 Silver
1236 Black

This makes for a total number production for both years of only "11,052".
Our cars are already going up in resale. I saw a used 2004 silver one going for what I payed for mine new.
 

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bigslim said:
We are working on a "Big Car Shootout" with the Marauders, Impallas and the 300C, Magnums, and Chargers. If there is anything you want to know about ours ask. Do not assume what you may have read about our cars. We have Marauders that run anywhere from the mid 15's to mid 11's. Our cars unlike yours have many mods we can chose from. I'm sure in time your cars will have more mods but until then we and the Impallas will own you. Anyway, good luck with you cars and your site.
Yeah, baby!! BRING IT ON!!! your blower looks sick BTW. I love the Idea of a big car shootout...I personally know of a guy out here in denver with a blown Buick Roadmaster :eek: that runs low 13's...one can only hope the aftermarket embraces the HEMI, but with the d-o-d setup It might be tough to do forced induction and the like...and still keep it reliable.
On a lighter note: whatever happened to the "De Sade" option on the Marquis? :D
 

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bigslim said:
The Marauder is actually selling used what they were selling for new. The dealers cannot keep the used ones on the lot.
Oh come on...

FWIW, I'm a Chrysler guy who became a Ford guy when I realized Chrysler didn't build any cars like I wanted...a station wagon or rear wheel drive. Except for my high school graduation car - the '66 - I haven't owned a Mopar since '99.

I bought my Lincoln used last summer, about 2 hours after walking out of a Mercury dealership because they wouldn't come down on price enough for a discontinued, lame-duck Marauder. I really like the Marauder. It's the closest thing to a real muscle car of all modern cars. It has the size, seating position, sound, and looks. It just doesn't have the bottom end, but, as noted, that's easily fixed with gears.

The Charger (or my LS) don't need 4.10 gears. The 5-speed automatics make up for it with an extremely low first gear ratio of about 3.5:1. In my LS, the 3.31 rear plus the ~3.5 1st gear gives me about 12:1 gearing. Your Marauder, assuming a 2.5:1 1st gear and a 4.10 rear, only gives a 10.25:1 ratio. The Charger is comparable. In short, the Charger doesn't have 4.10s because it doesn't need them.

The Marauder is a great car, but it's also a dinosaur. It has a crummy layout that gives you a tiny passenger compartment relative to the overall size of the car, an awkward-shaped trunk that's hard to load (I know, I had a '90 Crown Vic), flawed gas tank location, and antiquated chassis. It's a solid, proven design, but one that has many shortcomings that have been improved upon the 25-year newer 300. If you sit in the Charger, you'll see it has a much larger interior in most dimensions (it's narrower than the Marauder).

Anyway, to get back to my point that started with my walking out of a Mercury dealership then buying a used LS, Marauders could be had for $27k new, but stickered closer to $35k. They do not go for anything NEAR that used. When I was shopping, you could buy used ones all day for $22-23k. Now, I'm sure you could get one for closer to $15k.

And finally, the 4.6L is a crummy engine. Sorry, but it's true. It has no bottom end, questionable head durability, and it's as physically large as a big block. It's also expensive to produce. The new Chrysler Hemi is superior in basically every way. Ford's abandonment of its Hurricane engine was a tremendous mistake. Big V8s are in, and there's no way to make power cheaper than a pushrod V8. Ford really missed an opportunity.

Let's just hope the Panther platform doesn't go the way of the DEW98 platform, and be replaced with cheapened Volvo chassis ('08 LS will be a 500, and some say the next Town Car will be a stretched 500). If only Ford would invest money into updating the LS and building a modern RWD Panther replacement...
 

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To each his own,I do really hope you enjoy your maraudars!! I'm just not that big on car companies who take existing cars that are bland and boring in style and design,and they add on a couple of options and badging and they act like this is some unique totally brand new design that's going to rock the world!! Then the consumers start realizing its a glorified version of a pre-existing bland boring model,they've had all along,on its way out!! Whether they did it with the crown vic and made a maraudar,impala was bland and boring design,so they tried an SS,don't even get me going about the soo called new gto!!AS they have been doing this to cars for years!!! Bottom line car companies have got to start understanding when you have a bland ,boring style car and its not selling well,just because you do a few things to it and rebadge it as a so called brand new, so called high performance car,the people(customers aren't stupid)know its the same boring basic model they have had for years thats not selling,so they try and doll it up alittle and rename it,but basically its the same car,but now it turns in 15 second quarter miles,which does not constitute a collectors car,no matter how few they made!! Now you can put all the blowers,gears,and mods you want on it,but in the long run,its still the big boring bland stye car that they didn't make many of,because they couldn't fool the public into buying it!!It just makes me mad that the car companies don't go to the public,and ask them what they want---one example is Ford,and I take my hat off to them,at least they took the time to ask the Mustang fans what they are looking for in this new next generation Mustang,took everyones input,and made a brand new cool looking retro 60's style Mustang,that sells like hotcakes---Now that my friends is successful Marketing 101 !!! I think all the American Car companies can learn from this,and everybody goes home happy! :whistle:
 
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