In the one year and 10,000 miles I've owned this car, it wasn't a surprise to me when I experienced many of the same problems others have.
When I first got the car, one of the cup holders was broken. The other one is flimsy and feels like it could break any time.
The passenger side door handle is stiff and the door opens very hard.
The "Check Engine" light is almost always on which I've learned to grow with...I've heard there are no problems and that the light is just faulty, so why would I waste money?
Recently the airbag light flashes randomly and shuts off. Needless to say, I'm clueless on this one.
The left side speakers shorten out, especially so when listening to the tape player. Also, tuning the fade causes extreme shortening.
The light behind the clock has gone out. I've learned to live with, as I've heard, it's an expensive fix.
The clock light isn't the only one burnt out, the radio station display also is, which becomes quite annoying when trying to find and program stations.
The windows fog up constantly, quickly, and makes it hard to see around.
The temperature gauge runs fairly high.
Although the power locks still work, both front seat locks do not move in and out when locked and unlocked. Not a big deal, really.
Recently the gas tank has had problems opening and I've had to manually override from the trunk; now it won't shut. What a bother.
The center to hold tape cassettes and CD's is broken. The fastener to hold the lid shut fell off.
The most annoying problem yet has to do with my blinkers. A couple of months ago, I heard a fast paced clicking noise, like a fast blinker. I checked my lights on the dash and around the car, but none were on. The clicking sounded like it was coming from the steering column and I couldn't seem to fix it. When the blinkers or emergency flashers are on, the strange clicking is gone and everything functions properly. I've learned that the relay has gone out and that it will cost nearly $200.00 to fix.
Most recently a problem emerged out of the blue. One day I got in my car, tried to start it, yet failed. It was somewhat cold out, 35 degrees, so I gave it some gas to feed it and tried multiple times, following the Contour handbook. Starting still failed, it turned over meaning the battery was not dead, simply wouldn't start. The car is going to the Ford Dealership in a few days, but as far as I know, that might not be such a good idea.
The car handles excellent. For a little 2 liter 4-cylinder, it can really get up and go. When putting into gear, it jerks somewhat, but hey what car doesn't?
The interior has held up quite well, and the seats are very comfortable. Frame around the radio is a bit loose.
Exterior is awesome, I love it. The body style is wonderful. The maroon paint has held up well and looks beautiful after a good wash. The paint hasn't cracked, bubbled, or peeled yet.
When I got this as a car, I saw it as a dream come true - it look and handled great and didn't have any major problems. I saw many used contours on lots over 100k miles on them - some even over 200k so I thought at 70,000 I would get some great time and bargain out of this deal. When I began reading the reviews on the car though, I became a bit disheartened.
Overall I really do like this car, though I'm somewhat scared of the future of it. It seems once one thing goes bad, it all does; and if my car won't start it seems like the sequence has started...