1998 Ford Contour SE 4 CYLINDER from North America


I have nothing good to say about this car


Transmission went out at 27,000 miles. Two months after I purchased the car.

I had to replace the brakes twice within two years of the car purchase.

Horn quit working and had to be replaced.

The heater and air conditioner switch and blower assembly has been replaced twice within a six month period.

Drivers seat broke on impact from rear end collision.

General Comments:

I can't believe that vehicles made this poorly can be made available to the public.

This is not a dependable car, nor is it a safe car. I definitely don't want my family in it.

I have always been a fan of Ford until I bought this car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 10th July, 2002

1998 Ford Contour SVT 2.5 from North America


Best performance for the money


I currently haven't had anything fixed, but I have noticed a few problems. Everything is covered under a 100,000 mile extended warranty which was transferred to me from the previous owner.

There is a grinding when shifting into 3rd gear. My mechanic thinks the rings are damaged and the transmission will need to be replaced.

Power windows stop working periodically. Driver's side works fine and can control passenger's side fine. However the driver's controls for the rear windows will only power down, not up. Passenger side control only rolls up on the second push.

All settings except HIGH stopped working on A/C and Heater.

The damaged transmission I assume was due to poor driving before I received the car, the rest must be defects.

General Comments:

It's hard for me to believe that Ford can build a car like this. I liked my Ford Probe, but wasn't seriously impressed with it. I decided it was time for a change. I test drove several cars before this one, including a '98 BMW 328i, '99 Honda Accord, '98 Honda Prelude SH, and a '99 Volkswagen Jetta GLX VR6. The handling and performance of the Contour SVT blew them out of the water.

I reviewed several magazines which compared this car to others in its class of the same year. It was ranked in the top 3 in every single one of them.

This car has an excellent 0 - 60 and 60 - 0. I think, officially, it hits 0 - 60 in about 6.5 seconds.

It sticks to the road extremely well. I've taken curves on the highway where the recommended speeds are 40 or below, at over 80 without any screeching of the tires.

It has excellent pick up at any speed and in any gear. Traveling 80 MPH and then flooring it will pull you back into your seat.

I'm ashamed, but somewhat proud to say that I've had this car up to 140 MPH. The top speed is supposed to be 146, but at the rate I was going, I think it could have surpassed that.

I think it is a way under valued car. I bought my Contour SVT for 12,500 with 39,000 miles and a 100,000 mile extended warranty, which covers everything except oil changes. I'll admit, I got a steal because the Blue Book is around 13,000 - 16,000 for my year.

I'm majorly impressed with its performance for the money. I've taken it up against standard V6 Firebirds, Camaros and Mustangs. All are left in the dust. I'm not the kind of person that likes to street race, but I do think it is fun, blowing away suped up rice rockets, like Civics, Eclipses and Integras.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th June, 2002

13th Jun 2002, 09:54

I guess the people are right when they say FORD stands for First On Race Day, or at least only in this case. I'll admit, I don't really like Fords. The Contour SVT is one of the only Fords I'd ever consider buying. I think you're right when you said it is way under priced, but you have to remember, it is a Ford and that is why it loses value so fast. Regular Contours are so prone to problems, they give the SVT a bad name. I think if you changed this cars name and manufacturer, but left the car exactly the same, it would be worth $24,000 used, rather than $12,000. The 200 HP engine seems to be somewhat quite a bit more powerful and faster than 99% of cars that are suppose to have just as powerful of engines. Ford made a made a mistake by discontinuing the Contour SVT. Now they have a Focus SVT...who would want to buy that?