1. Brake rotors warp every 10K miles. Currently under warranty, but will get expensive later.
2. Airbag sensor was replaced (warranty).
3. Gas tank filler neck was replaced (warranty).
4. IAC valve was replaced (by me - dealer was too clueless to know what the problem was).
5. Shift linkage is loose. Currently investigating myself because dealer is clueless.
The car's virtues don't really make themselves known until you drive other cars that are supposed to perform better. Then you realize what a hot little car it really is. It's one of those cars that just encourages you to drive fast.
I recently drove a new BMW 328i, and can say without reservation that I'd rather drive the SVT on a daily basis. It's much more of a driver's car.
On a darker note, Ford's dealer network seems to be spotty at best. My personal experiences have been less than encouraging.
Finally, I can't express enough how disappointed I am that Ford is discontinuing this car. The Contour was basically the only European-flavored sedan sold in America, and it makes me sick that Ford has shifted its efforts to the SUV fad. Ford is forcing me to buy a European car when it's time to replace my SVT.