1996 Ford Contour GL 2.0 liter zetec from North America


A great starter car


My knob to turn my heater up went bad at 80,000 miles.

My dome light fell out at 90,000 miles.

General Comments:

This car is the most reliable I think I will ever own.

My contour starts up every time, and I have put very little money into it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th January, 2004

1996 Ford Contour SL 6 Cylinder from North America


A very costly and unfortunate mistake


I had to get a new transmission at 50,000 miles.

The impeller disintegrated and the pieces of it flew into my radiator, requiring a new one to be installed. This happened at 60,000 miles.

The A/C compressor fell apart.

The car has been dripping an oil-like substance (it's gray and thick), and smells absolutely terrible, but nobody can seem to figure out what it is. There is no oil leak.

Internally, the cup holder broke early on from normal use.

The factory CD player died after not much use at all.

The front passenger electric window went down one day and wouldn't go back up so I had to have the door disassembled to pull the glass back up, and now the window won't go down at all.

The check-engine light has come on four times, and all four times I paid $45 to have the mechanic tell me it was just a problem in the dash and there's nothing wrong with the car.

The cooling light also comes on periodically, but then shuts off after driving a few minutes.

The back doors developed a horrible squeaking sound when you open them and became very stiff.

The gas tank cover opens sometimes and doesn't open sometimes using the driver's side tank lever, and at times I have to go out and physically pry it open in order to get to the gas tank.

General Comments:

I bought this car because I wanted a reliable car to get me to and from work and was happy at first.

The car was under warranty when I bought it, and nothing started going wrong until the warranty expired.

I've gotten numerous notices of recalls on this car throughout ownership, some minor and some major.

The overall reliability of this car has steadily declined since day one of owning it.

I've had many mechanics tell me how cheaply made some of the engine parts are, and how they have directly impacted or caused all the problems I've had with it.

The interior of the car is very comfortable and the exterior is nice looking.

Unfortunately, the looks of the car have been deceiving and I have spent an enormous amount of money trying to keep the thing running for the past five years.

I would not recommend this car to anyone who is considering buying one.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 26th December, 2003

1996 Ford Contour GL 4 - Cylinder Zetec from North America


A car worth buying


-At 42000 new front brake pads/rotors/tires all for about $550.

-At about 45000 miles the rear back window leaked on me.

-At 46000 new battery, $60.

-At 51000 the serpentine belt made a squealing sound, replaced for $85.

-At about 52000 the radiator developed a leak and had to be replaced for $480.

-At 62800 new rear brake drums/shoes, cost about $150.

-At about 68900 the water pump leaked, at the same time the shop said to replace the timing belt/tensioenr spring as well, since it was suppoused to be done at 60000, so I did cost about $475.

-At 72000 new struts for front and back, $400.

-At 82300 new brake pads for front $170.

At 93234 something to do with the fan broke.

Then the thing ran great until about 115000 when the alternator went out, repalced it and starter at same time.

At 128900 another new water pump, $380.

At 130000 new serpentine belt.

At 134000 new transmission, but decided to put engine at same time, nearly $3700 for both, but hey it ws worth it.

At about 135000 new front brake pads/rotors/ drums/shoes $325.

Through the next year I had several parts of the steering and suspension brake that cost about $600 for all.

At 146945 new radiator again, other one was pretty dang good.

At 158900 new struts all around again.

All through this time through I have had a few fuses blow, few power door locks not work, few bulbs here and there go out, just normal stuff. I have also had a few Check Engine lights, and also a ABS light once. I have also replaced the trunk lining once.

The seats have held up fairly good, drivers side has few tears in it.

General Comments:

The car is really nice to drive and handles great, but if your on a slanted road, meaning to left or right you will fell it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th December, 2003