1986 Mercury Cougar GS 5.0 302 from North America


Great project car


Driver's side power seat motor no longer moves back and forth.

General Comments:

This car is in stock factory mode is slow. It's very heavy and the stock engine(s) are underpowered. The steering is loose and sloppy, and the interior rather drab.

However, there are many modifications that can be made to the car to enhance its performance, style and looks. Ford Mustang parts are easily interchangeable with these vehicles (a Cougar is really nothing more than a longer, heavier Mustang).

This is a great project car. There are so many things that can be done to this "grandma-grandpa" car. All you need is time, money and research, and you can have yourself quite the "sleeper" on your hands!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 16th June, 2014

1986 Mercury Cougar LS 289 turbo from North America


Buy it if offered


The only thing wrong with the car is the seats have worn very badly due to old age and material.

General Comments:

The Cougar is a very reliable, very fast car. The year my parents gave it to me I was really excited. The original engine was a 196 medium. I recently put in the small block 289 turbo. The highest I've hit was 135 in 1.5 miles.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 28th September, 2010

28th Sep 2010, 20:50

What is a 196 Medium engine?

1986 Mercury Cougar 6 cylinder, 3.8L from North America


A Good Old Car!


When I first got the car, the oil light flickered a lot.

Turns out previous owner had the oil overfilled. I had the oil changed and the oil light has went and stayed off.

Nothing else has went wrong.

General Comments:

This car is great for it being 20 years old. The interior is in good shape and so is the body.

It has a digital odometer that says it has 79,000 miles. Seems low for a 20 year old car; not sure if it is accurate, but it does work.

It's reliable, has not left me stranded yet.

I think Mercury makes great vehicles.

This car is much better than I expected, considering its age.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th January, 2006

1986 Mercury Cougar from North America


A lovable money pit on wheels


Let's see... the catalytic converter blew up. No, it didn't break down. IT EXPLODED. The motor mount also broke into two pieces, and it's leaking rear differential fluid. Other than that, I've had to replace the brakes, which is routine maintenance, so that's nothing to complain about.

General Comments:

I love this car to pieces, which is exactly why I keep shelling out the money to fix it every time something goes wrong. It has such character. Kind of a grandpa car, but that's what gives it its charm. It's fun looking too... you certainly won't lose it in a parking lot! The steering is very loose, which I like. Overall, it's a nice car, if you don't mind it nickel and diming you from time to time.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd November, 2005

5th Nov 2005, 12:05

You are doing the right thing by continuing to fix it. Regardless of what anybody tells you, the notion that "an old car will nickel and dime you to death" is an absolute myth! So every few months maybe you have to pay a couple hundred bucks to fix something. That sure beats making a $500 car payment every month, plus the extra insurance that the finance company makes you carry on "their" car. That differential leak might be a fairly easy fix if it's just a matter of replacing the axle seals or the differential cover gasket. Keep checking the fluid level so you don't burn it out.

1986 Mercury Cougar LS 5.0L EFI V8 from North America


A car worth way more than blue-book


Recently replaced smog pump, water pump and power steering pump.

Needs paint touch-up because Ford paint jobs suck.

General Comments:

This car was bought brand new by my grandparents, and was given to me as a gift of getting my license. I've owned the car for 3 years now, and have loved every minute of it. It has all the bells and whistles, the interior has held up very well (is in mint condition today) and the problems listed above can only be expected from an 18 year old car, which is not bad at all!

The car is 99% stock, except I had to put in a new radio (I love my CDs), and I replaced the speakers with new ones. I also added a bigger (2 core) radiator due to overheating issues where I live. My area is very hot in the summer, and the single core radiator wasn't cutting it. I can now run the A/C, give it some pedal, and go up the Grape Vine with no problem!

The car performs very well. It handles beautifully and I have plenty of power to get up to 65 MPH on those short freeway on-ramps. The balance between horsepower and torque is just right. I have nice get-up and go when driving around, and I have plenty of torque to tow the family boat (1991 Spyder Sport GM 4.3L V6 (18 ft long) ) I don't tow it much, but when I do, the car doesn't have a problem with it one bit.

The car has cost me virtually nothing to maintain. The few pieces I replaced, like I said, were expected for the car's age.

I love my 86 Cougar LS. If you find one for sale that has been taken care of, you should jump on that deal. I'm willing to bet people will start to realize that this is a good car and that sometime in the future this car will be worth more than it is today.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 2nd August, 2004

2nd Aug 2004, 11:44

Well, it will probably eventually be worth more than a 1986 Mercury Topaz, but you shouldn't expect to see significant appreciation for at least another 15-20 years. Too many around yet, and it's age is in that range of: too old to be worth much of anything as a used car, but not old enough yet to be considered even remotely collectible.