EGR sensor needed replacement at 85,000 miles. My car was at the dealership for 3 weeks before they finally realized this was the problem. Although it was under the used car warranty, they tried to worm their way out of paying.
Timing belt needed replacement at 90,000 miles.
Replaced the driver's side window control panel in 2001. Now passenger side window control does not work, and passenger side window needs to be opened and closed by the driver.
Gas cap cover won't open without using the manual opener in the trunk.
Serpentine belt replaced then replaced again within 5,000 miles due to excessive wear caused by a bad tensioner. Replaced the tensioner and serpentine belt. $600 repair.
2 engine mounts became completely stripped around 110,000 miles. The mechanic fixed it, stating it was "nearly unfixable". (Whatever that means...) It was a $300 repair.
Currently leaking gas, but I have yet to find out from where.
Chrome stripping on bumpers peeling.
Paint is peeling on front driver's side fender.
All four door hinges squeak badly despite frequent lubrication and removal of rust.
Fan motor needed replacement at 90,000 miles.
Oxygen sensor needed replacement at 90,000.
Battery stopped taking a charge and needed replacement in 2004.
I purchased this car in 2001. For the first two years, it ran mostly well. For the past 3, however, it has been one problem after another. This car is so unreliable that I am thankful every time it starts. The engine is extremely rough, which the mechanic said was "typical" of that particular engine. Like many other former or current Contour owners, I have been turned off of Ford forever! I don't anticipate that my Contour will make it to 120,000, at the rate things are going. What a headache. I do not recommend the Ford Contour to anyone, unless you are a mechanic capable of keeping it in running condition reasonably inexpensively.