Mercury Park Lane -65

Just a short question.
The parking brake works on a pedal, how does it release? Is it vacuum or a knob/button somewhere. I can’t find any.
I’m redoing the brakes (drums/drums), but I ain’t gonna touch that pedal unless I know how to get it released.
No, the owner don’t know, have no books or anything and that danged thing is so rare here that I can’t find even one who knows.

Some release by pushing them again, others with a pull knob.


There’s a vacuum diaphragm that releases the parking brake when the transmission is shifted into gear.



There is a 1" wide handle under the left side of the dashboard. Pull to release brake. The automatic vacuum release debuted in 68.

Does yours have the Breezeway rear window?

I found a PDF of the 1965 Ford and Mercury Shop Manual. Pg 2-10 has the diagram of the vacuum operated parking brake release.

Rock Auto in the USA lists parts for this car.,1965,park+lane

Best of luck,

Ed B.

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The opening rear window was the first thing I thought of. Our neighbors had a maroon one.

Thanks so much to all so far.
Due to you I found the release handle - hidden behind an angled brackett above the pedal. And it works. Its a hinged lever and when you turn it, it sounds as it is also pulling on a diaphragm so maybe it is an “emergency” release. I won’t know untill I get the car started.
Ed B.
That link can be really helpfull.
Ol Mopar Guy.
Don’t know about that. I know what a Bacardi Breezer is, but …
It says Marauder on the rear window post,
Have a look at the pics and tell me what You see. Not obvious on the pics, but this car needs a lot of TLC and a new paint job, but I hope we’ll get it done as the owner saves up some money. And I really hope that he can get enough money saved up so he can get some BRAKES on that front axle. It’s supposed to have 350 hp on the wheels on a "rolling " test machine.

Marauder is very special, it’s a high performance sub model. The sigh you heard indicates it’s an early vacuum release. The way it’s supposed to work is that there’s a vacuum switch operated by the transmission selector on the steering column. In any position other than Park it permits engine vacuum to pass through to the diaphragm on the parking brake linkage which releases the brake. The small black lever you found is to release the brake when the automatic mechanism (inevitably) fails. It typically fails with a leak in the diaphragm. When that happens, just pull the hose off the diaphragm and plug it with a sheet metal screw.

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Yeah, 54 year old vacuum hoses, connectors, and diaphragms - what could go wrong??:hushed:


Thanks a bunch. This car has the shifter on the tunnel, but that’s a minor detail, it works the same way.

It reminds me of when - many years ago - when I moved to Ca for a few years and bought me a very nice -69 caddy barge. I stepped on the pedal (luckily I was home) and found out I didn’t know how to release it. A few days went by without finding anything - me being to proud to ask somebody - and at that point it HAD to be moved.
My thought: 472 are stronger than the rear brakes so I put it in reverse and nailed the go-go pedal. Next thing was tires hollering like a banshee and the air turned blue in an instant as the p. brake released when I put it in gear.
I guess all the neighbours within a sq. mile realized that a dumb-a?? was in the neighbourhood.
At least I learned something that day.

That was exactly my thinking.

That’s probably gross HP, since that’s the way it was quoted back then. The same would be true of any 60s car, including muscle cars.

That could be true if not for the fact that, it has been on one of these:

here in DK a few years ago and the diagram shows 350 hp on the wheels so it has to be net hp.
All I know about the engine is that it is a big block and the owner says that it is a 7,2 liter and it - together with the transmission - is rebuilt. I could imagine that it has a non-stock cam as it vibrates a little more at idle than I’d expect it should and there are gas fumes in the air at idle (spark plugs looks perfect).
The owner got it in exchange for some work on a house last year and knows next to nothing about it - he might be wrong on engine size, heck, it could be from another car. Who knows.

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Now it makes sense.

Many high performance cars back in the day understated their horsepower to make the insurance attainable and sometimes to get around corparation edicts. The most powerful 426 hemi was never rated at more than 425 hp but its horses seemed stronger than anyone elses.

Remember the 396 Chevies that were actuall 402 cubes but GM had decreed that none of its divisions could put more than 400 cubes in an intermediate so 396 it was.

Wasn’t the net horsepower about 2/3 the quoted gross horsepower, though? If those muscle cars didn’t have a lot of power-robbing accessories, the net would be closer to the gross than in a Cadillac, but still a lot less than advertised.

Here (europe) we have DIN hp and had SAE hp also. Din is hp measured at the fly wheel on an engine with airfilter, exhaust, waterpump, alternator/generator, fly wheel - everthing needed for the engine to work in a car. Don’t count AC, P/S or the like, those are options.
SAE are measured without those items and it makes quite a difference. My Morris Minor witk the 1100 cc engine is rated at 51 hp SAE and 48 hp DIN whereas the Caddy I once owned back then was rated at 380 hp SAE and around 290 - 300 hp DIN.
The SAE value has completely disappered over here and has not been used for probably more than 40 years.

Found another example: M-B 200 -69. 105 SAE/90 DIN

Can’t remember what DIN stands for, but it is not Deutsche Industrie Norm. A widespread misunderstanding in Europe.

Okay, found this in case of anybody interrested:


Did a little more digging, found tune up specs for the 390 (6.4L) and the 427 (7.0L). The forum would only allow me to upload the pages as png files.

You can get the engine off the ID plate (see pg 1-1 of the shop manual link). Engine codes are on pg 1-4.

Ed B.

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If it is a “7.2 liter” engine, then it’s a 440 CID. I didn’t know Ford made a 440. 460, yes.

The common stock big block Ford engine for a 1965 Mercury would be a 390cu in. The 460cu in (7.5L) was not used in Mercurys until 1969.


My 64 Park Lane had the 430 Lincoln engine