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Even 'cattle leavings' will shine if you polish them enough..... by J on 05/27/2009. Trim: 1998 Ford Contour SE, Owned 9 years.
Pros: The styling was great for this car, especially the wheels on the trim level we had. Even for it's age people commented on what a nice looking car it was.
Cons: The biggest money pit I've ever owned. Granted, it did have around 98,000 miles on it when we bought it used, but still I've had older cars with much higher miles outlive this car (ironically, the Mercury version of the Contour, the Mystique, is often refered to as 'The Mistake' by mechanics. We had to replace the fuse block, water pump and transmission. The a/c also quit, but we never got it repaired. The final 'nail in the coffin' was the copious amounts of smoke blowing out from it's exhaust at about 150,000 miles. The Contour's sleek appearance is it's only saving grace, because I only received a $250.00 tax write-off when I recently donated it to an online car charity auction.
Overall review: Speaking from my own experience, the Contour is visually appealing for a family sedan but, has incredibly poor reliability and performance overall. For the others that love theirs, maybe the previous owners knew what a dodgy car it was and decided to pass it onto someone else. In any case, I'd rather catch the bus to work than buy another Contour.
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