20th Jul 2008, 16:10
I also have a 1996 Ford Contour V-6. When I bought this car I also purchased a 5 yr. extended warranty with it. It was the best money I ever spent. The Car now has 103,000 miles, and I am trying to fix it up for my daughter. I have found the junk yard to be a great place to get parts for the car. I have replaced all the wiring in the car, all wire burnt up. If you have a Contour that is not running I suggest trying the junk yard for parts. There are a lot of Contours in the junk yards to chose from. Good luck.
9th Jun 2009, 09:52
My 1996 Ford Contour SE, 5-speed, 6V, has 215,000 miles on it! I've had all the same problems with it as you guys: check engine light's been on for years, replaced the water pump twice in one year (that was 5 years ago and it's been fine since), the heat did a meltdown in the middle of a blizzard one time... it seems when it was younger it was in the shop all the time for recalls and repairs, but after 100,000 miles it got real smooth. Now it's aging, so I've had to only occasionally replace parts that are wearing out.
I began looking for another car around 175,000 miles, but since it's been working so well, decided to to just keep it until it dies, out of loyalty and curiosity. In the meantime, I give it the oil changes it needs, drive smart, etc.
I love how it handles: I don't even have to slow down on the curves. And it accelerates really well when I need it.
9th Jun 2009, 11:42
Originally the water pumps had resin impellers that broke. Later replacement water pumps with metal impellers became available. I bet your first replacement had a plastic impeller.
I believe you are on to something: The constant early repairs benefited the cars as they aged. But their reputation is so rotten that they are sold at really low prices.
11th Jun 2009, 02:22
Wish I could get mine to go faster than 160 kph, cause I know it will, but there seems to be a speed limiter on it.
13th Dec 2009, 01:52
After my 1996 Ford Contour, 2.5 liter engine that I bought brand-new off the lot with less than 2 miles on it, I swore I would NEVER buy another Ford again!
In less than 3 years and 36,000 miles, it required approximately $14,000 in repairs... power windows (twice), slave cylinder, new clutch (due to the slave cylinder leaking all over the clutch), new air-conditioner, and finally, a new engine. Strangely, I consider myself lucky because the cracked head happened with less than 90 miles before the warranty expired! The engine overheated and when the "idiot light" comes on, then it is too late. The engine overheated due to a PLASTIC impeller on the water pump which broke in half like a cookie in the 200+ degree radiator fluid. Who was Ford engineer thought THIS was a good idea?!
Sure, the dealership was nice at first to provide a free rental car, but as I kept returning, that ended. I found myself having to buy a decade old Nissan pick-up truck in order to get to work because the Ford was in the shop so much!
And the kick in the teeth? Ford refused my request to purchase additional time on a warranty after the car spent nearly a year in the shop during the 3 years I owned the car! Once the car was fixed, I refused to drive it without the warranty and traded it in for another NON-Ford car... Never Again!
13th Dec 2009, 11:25
I have a 1997 Ford Contour Sport 2.0 automatic. OK, I have also had problems with it, but nothing extreme like what I have read, it seems a lot of you have the 2.5 V6, which might really be the main problem, because I have owned my 4cyl for over 2 years now. I paid $450 for it on craigslist and it has only needed routine maintenance.
My main problem is the A/C doesn't blow cold, my check engine light is on, but it has not affected the way it runs or drives, and my cup holder is broken, but that's about it, it has 150k and I would drive it anywhere with confidence, and I don't baby it, I drive it hard daily.
I'm sorry that everyone has had so many problems with theirs, but good luck.
17th Dec 2009, 08:10
My Contour has 150,000 miles and I have not had a problem. I'm an 18 year old college student who got the car for a grand. I beat it and the only thing that's bad is the air conditioner does not work, which if you live in New York this time of year, it's perfectly fine ;)
But mine is a 1996 GL 2.0L, oh and my driver's side door window is starting to not work. I'm sorry for all your guys problems; mine works great, and for the guy who asked about raising his rpms to have better idle, I would suggest doing that cause Contours run rough to begin with, so the engine needs more gas to power it when it's idling. A mechanic suggested it to me if I ever have a stalling problem.
I hope I could help :)