The 2010 Mountaineer can be configured to be either a five- or seven-passenger vehicle, and when equipped, the third row can be power operated. The Mountaineer is quite roomy inside, with a good driving position. Second-row occupants will also find plenty of space, though adults will have trouble entering or exiting the third row, let alone fitting in it.
ConsumerGuide says that there's "plenty of room on comfortable seats...three adults can squeeze across in the roomy 2nd row," while amazingly, "third-row headroom is expansive, and legroom is surprisingly good." Cars.com notes that "second-row seats can be ordered as either a bench or bucket seats," and Mercury Mountaineer Premier models "have reclining seatbacks." On the other hand, Kelley Blue Book contends that "the third row is narrow and low to the floor, making long trips uncomfortable for adults"—which is the usual case for SUVs.
Storage space is good for cargo, but you won't find as many small places to store electronics and other items as on newer models. ConsumerGuide says that the Mercury Mountaineer's rear "separate-opening hatch glass is handy, but the hatch itself is weighty to open or close...second- and 3rd-row seats fold nearly flat for ample cargo room." The source adds, "aside from a large console box, interior storage is meager," also noting that "the transmission shift lever blocks easy access to some climate controls."
The cabin feels nicely appointed, with a high-quality feel, though up close the materials themselves could be better. Automotive.com says they "are generally nice, though there are some plastics that smack of cost-cutting." They add that "front door handles and door pulls are strangely placed and are at first awkward to use." ConsumerGuide is less than complimentary, remarking that the Mountaineer's interior materials are "mostly solid-feeling...many surfaces are hard plastic, however, which we deem inappropriate given Mountaineer's upscale intentions."
Ride quality is quite good, though—credit the Mountaineers SUV's independent rear suspension. For a truck-derived sport-ute, the Mountaineer has pleasant road manners. Most reviewers say that the ride is quite comfortable, but ConsumerGuide places the Mercury Mountaineer 2009 "among the best of traditional truck-type SUVs...compliant, and devoid of sloppy motions."