in a mid 90’s minni van, which is better, over all, the Dodge Caravan or Merc. Villager ??
Neither is a particularly good choice, but between the two, I’d take the Dodge, just because the Mercury (really just a badge-engineered Ford Windstar) is way worse.
The original Mercury Villager/Nissan Quest used a Nissan drivetrain when they came out in 1993. My friend has a 94 Villager running well at 160 - 170k miles with the original Nissan engine and transmission. It has a timing belt though. I believe 2002 was the last year for the Villager. After that it was replaced by the Monterey which was a rebadged Ford Freestar.
Try www.edmunds.com to research the Caravan and Villager. I don’t have any experience with the Caravan, but we had a 98 Windstar for 8 years that was still in great shape when we sold it (must have been the exception)
My mistake - edb1961 is right about the Nissan/Ford joint venture - the Villager is actually a Nissan Quest with a Mercury badge on it (basically) and NOT a badge-engineered Windstar… oops.
After looking at carsurvey.org, comparing a 96 Villager to a 96 Caravan, the Villager appeared to be much better. Perhaps because it was essentially made by Nissan? Anyway, since the Villager isn’t a ‘real’ Ford, I’d say go with it, since the Caravan really wasn’t a very good vehicle during the time frame you’re looking at.