2000 Ford Contour from North America


I think it's a great car for its price


Engine light went on, the second day I owned this car, took it to the dealer he got it repaired at no additional cost to me. The ODII code was PO708 (Range Sensor Switch), car is running great now, Amen.

General Comments:

Great car; only makes a noise when I press the brakes.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th October, 2007

2000 Ford Contour SE 2 L 4 Cylinder, VCT from North America


Excellent choice for basic transportation


We bought this car even though it had a few faults. It was cheap! The previous owner did not take care with this vehicle. There must have been a small fender bender on the right front and maybe it was broken into as well. We are fixing or getting fixed the things that bother us so we can enjoy the benefits of the repairs in the coming years.

Front rotors and pads replaced.

Right front wheel bearing replaced.

Rear drum brakes cleaned.

4 wheel alignment.

Tires balanced. (All of the above came to $500)

The headlights were completely out of whack. It was so easy to adjust them using the built in levels.

The hood was misaligned and needed adjusting. This was a game of trial and error. The window surrounds are bent out of shape. I was able to get them to the point were the windows close completely and don't make undue wind noises.

The power window switch at the right rear did not work. ($2.50 at local junk yard)

The transmission shifts kind of sudden from 1st to 2nd. We added Lucas Transmission Fix to improve shifting. It helped a little. ($8)

The suspension squeaks. The Contour Enthusiast Group website explains how to fix it: remove the sway bar bushings and apply waterproof grease to them, reassemble. It worked. What a relief!

The volume control on the Stereo Cassette does not work. I will likely replace the unit with one from the junk yard ($45).

There is a lot of engine noise under hard acceleration. I wonder if some plastic parts under the left fender are vibrating? I test drove other Contours to see if they are this loud, but they are not. Please write a comment if you can point me to a possible cause.

General Comments:

This car is fun to drive. The variable cam timing (VCT) gives this 2 L engine a remarkable range of usable RPMs, but it comes with noise, roughness and vibrations. I reduced the noise level by adding insulation under the hood. (NAPA, insulation mat and fasteners, about $50. It is alright when cruising along. However, if this were our main vehicle we would have chosen the 6 cylinder engine because it is much quieter.

The car has exceptional cornering ability. The springs are stiff, but not harsh. The brakes perform well even though the pedal feel is a bit soft. Maybe that will improve as the new pads and rotors get worked in.

It is easy on the fuel as well. I have to take more data, but it seems to yield more than 20 mpg in the city and about 30 mpg on the highway.

The headlights deliver excellent illumination.

The seats are well shaped and hold you in place when cornering hard. They have enough adjust-ability to accommodate tall or small people. The Contour has enough space in the back for our two boys (13, 11 years of age) and it could take us long distance should gas prices preclude us from using the mini van.

We also like the fact that the Contour has a cabin air filter. Gesundheit! It keeps allergens out of our noses and helps to keep the dash cleaner.

Overall, we are happy with our Contour as a low cost means of automotive transportation. We are also encouraged about its longevity because there are four more Contours in the extended family with 110000 miles and more and still running strong. Only one of them has a problem: it overheats, but then it served for 170000 miles already.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd August, 2006

21st Nov 2006, 13:17

I found the reason for the excessive engine noise under acceleration: the air filter box rattled. I placed foam padding under the box and that took care of it.

The new brakes are now worked in and perform nicely. There is no soft pedal feel anymore.

I replaced the spark plugs, wires and air filter. This car runs now very well and has been reliable for a full year.

My self and others noted sudden shift with these cars. I believe many of these complaints come because it is hard to anticipate just when the shifts will occur. That is happening in particular when I increase acceleration after the initial take off. However, if I am feather-footed, barely touch the pedal and keep the throttle position constant the car will accelerate and shift smoothly and predictably. I think that this engine would be better mated to a manual gearbox than an automatic because of this behavior.