Entire car vibrates at 1200 rpm in neutral, drive (55mph) or overdrive (65mph) from the first day. The dealer claimed that all models on the lot vibrate at the same speed. The fix was to loosen the exhaust mounts. Now it just rattles at 1200 rpm.
Every heavy rain results in a puddle on the passenger floorboard. Ford TSB mentions that this is caused by mis-shimmed windshield.
Water pump went out at 50K.
Brake rotors warp and require replacement every 30K miles.
The driver door started to sag around 40K miles, resting 1-2 inches lower toward the open end. The top edge gouged into and sprung the steel/chrome decoration strip from the back passenger window. $300 required to fix the sagging hinge metal, $800 to replace the entire passenger window.
A/C compressor blew at 60K. Seals later became leaky, resulting in $900 overhaul of system when I moved to Phoenix.
Windshield sealant is a black tar-like substance which reflows and oozes down windshield in 120F heat.
Courtesy lights and power mirrors failed due to frayed wires under drivers seat. This occurred around 85K miles. Dealer never mentioned that there was a TSB about it. They also left half of the connectors loose and rattling in the dash after the repair.
Had the fuel vapor hose recall performed around 90K. The fuel pump was noticeably noisy after this fix. It failed in Oklahoma in transit to Phoenix two weeks later.
Both power window clutches failed due to deterioration of the three teflon clutch bushings (92K drivers side) (98K passenger side).
At 99K, a $2.40 teflon bushing which holds the transmission kick down cable to the throttle plate deteriorated and fell apart in traffic. The car was accelerating at full throttle with both feet on the brake pedal. I was able to stop without injury by popping the transmission into neutral and turning off the key. Over 100 such incidences noted by NHTSA customer complaints, but no warning from Ford/Mercury.
The car was rust-proofed by the dealer and held up relatively well except for the rocker panels, where a small hole in the inner wall holds a brake line retainer clip. Both rockers are completely rusted through.
The rubber seal around the back window shrank with age and exposure (around 50K). Replacement seal is over $100.
It is extremely comfortable for long-distance highway driving.
The 1989 model appears to be one of the few that do not have as many head gasket or transmission problems.
It has excellent acceleration and cornering ability.
Find a dealer who knows how to work on them and put them back together (undamaged) when they are done. If you find one, let the rest of us know where they are!