2000 Mercury Cougar 2.5 V6 from North America


Nice ride inside and out!


Bought used.

Purchase - Fixed sunroof (needed everything, car only came with the 'lid,' don't know why)

Replaced brakes, rotors, etc. All the usual stuff you do when you buy used.

Sometime between purchase and winter - The security light stopped working, my remote wouldn't work, power locks wouldn't work. Had to use key to get in. Hatch button still worked but I still had to put the key in and lift it anyways (everyone seems to have the same issues with the hatch). Problem was a fuse. Replaced it once, happened again a few weeks after, replaced it again and it's been fine.

Winter of '07 - (approx. 70000?) Noticed the car idled strangely, very jerky when driven, but this happened on a very cold day, first time I had it in the snow. Idling got better as the engine warmed up. Problem was gone next day.

At inspection April '08 - Replaced brakes again, new tires. I'm hard on brakes though.

October '08 - (approx 77000?) Battery went. I'm guilty of leaving the lights on once or twice, though, and I do like to sit and listen to radio while waiting for whatever reason. Replaced, pretty simple.

About two days later - Wouldn't start. Ignition went on but car never turned over. Just kinda sputtered. Knew it wasn't the battery, tried to jump it anyway. Didn't work. Had to give it gas while turning the key. Hasn't happened since, car's been fine.

November '08, Thanksgiving Week - (approx 77500?) Left school, weather had just turned very cold in very short amount of time. Car started jerking and lurching, idled oddly. Brakes were very unpredictable, at times hard to step on, other times totally fine, ran a few stop signs. Check engine light came on. Called AAA because I didn't want to drive it with the malfunctioning brakes. Took to mechanic - cracked intake, most likely from it being old and not holding up well against the fast temp drop. Same thing happened to our Tahoe. Fluids weren't getting where they needed to be. Replaced for $500, mechanic is family friend so he tuned it up for me, thing runs fantastic ever since. Mileage increased, power was better, start up was stronger.

Smaller issues include the trunk thing, I always have to lift it while holding the button, and in cold weather it doesn't stay up, it falls on you while you're reaching in to get something. Have to hold it up for a bit sometimes, but in cold weather it just won't stay. Very minor as long as you're careful.

There's a leak in the backseat passenger side, whenever it rains really hard that seat is soaked. Looks like water runs from the top corner, where the hatch meets the roof. Tried a bunch of things but haven't been able to fix permanently. Also rather minor - I just stuff a cloth there when I know it's going to rain and I have to have passengers. Now, however, I noticed my seal across the top on the outside of the car where the hatch meets the roof it coming off. Once it stops snowing I'll have to glue it.

Passenger side seat slides back. We slide it up to get in the back, but as soon as someone goes to sit in it then it slides backwards. Whoever sits there slides it front again and seems to stay once weight is on it, just the initial getting in it moves. If no one's sitting in it and it's front and I hit the brake hard, it'll slide backward too. Again, minor.

Random lights come on every now and again as the weather changes. I only pay attention to ones that last for more than a week. Also, the wrench light at the top by the ice and snow lights and sunroof controls doesn't go off when you fix whatever's the problem. You have to reset it yourself. I'm not sure if it's supposed to reset itself or not though.

General Comments:

Excellent for the mileage and what we paid for it. It was R titled so it was a good deal.

Good first car for a new driver like I was when I got it.

Handles great in the snow/rain/any weather (some people disagree, but I would check the type of tires you have on it).

Wonderful gas mileage. It only takes $20 to fill from 1/4 tank (gas at $1.75) which is great for my part-time job salary.

Suspension is rough. I feel like I hit something whenever I go over a bump, but not really a big deal. I hardly notice it now.

Hesitates when I step on the gas, but once it shifts, it really takes off.

Comfort is awesome. I love the bucket seats in the back, I don't have my friends trying to double seat themselves, the ones that do get to ride back there are surprised at the room the deep seat makes. The front seats are surprisingly very spacious. I'm tall and have long legs and arms, and I don't feel cramped at all. Driver's seat it easy to adjust. The radio, heat and A/C are easily accessible so as not to distract from driving. Wish it was four door, but I can deal with it. I never sit in the back anyway.

Car heats up and cools off fast. As soon as the temperature gets hot in the engine, the inside of the car is nice and warm. I don't use the A/C too often to save gas, but when I do it works great. The windows open and cool the whole car off pretty well.

This car is a hot little machine, great for a 16 year old girl in high school to start driving with. I'm hoping it lasts me a lot longer though. It's sporty and looks like an expensive car, but it's really not. I like to call it a step up from a Sunfire or Cavalier.

This car is like a tank! I've backed into my parents' Tahoe, not even a scratch or dent! I backed into someone at work, nothing on it. Shopping carts, door dings, it's like the Cougar is invincible. Like I said, I bought it R titled (previous owner rear ended a truck) and it was only scuffed on the hood and had a cracked front bumper and broken grill. Not sure why it was R titled just for that (the airbag may have gone off... not sure), but it held up well either way. Knock on wood, I've never been in a serious accident, but the safety ratings are good for the cougar.

Overall, I love the car and I love how it handles. The problems (except for the intake) were all simple and minor. It's a reliable car and I would definitely buy another one when this one bites the dust.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th January, 2009

2000 Mercury Cougar 2.5 V6 from North America


It gives the impression of high class without costing too much


Yes I don't believe there is a Mercury Cougar out there with a properly working trunk hatch. But that's something that is only minor.

Both wheel bearings went bad at 75000, and I finally replaced them at about 86000. It also needed new tie-rod ends and ball joints. I did all four struts, which was a big pain cause they are all rusted tight to the car.

Like many others, I am experiencing surging lights and occasionally the battery light comes on, but I won't worry about that for a while.

Currently my biggest problem is that it won't idle. It goes through fast idle @ 2000 rpm, then goes to normal idle @ 1050rpm, stays there for a moment the tries to go to slow idle @ 750 rpm. When it goes to slow idle, it starts to spit and sputter till the rpm drops to about 200 rpm, when the computer finally recognizes that something is wrong and kicks it all the way back to fast idle. Then it falls and stumbles, and picks itself back up again. I have no idea what is wrong. It doesn't get better even at operating temp. Every time I come to a stoplight I have to put it in neutral and jump on the gas.

General Comments:

It's a very stylish car and does fairly well in the snow, provided you keep it on the road, but has very convenient tow hooks on the back end for recovery.

It has been a good first car for me, and hopefully it will continue to be one for a long time, but if I was buying it again I probably wouldn't, or at least I'd go for the manual transmission.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 10th December, 2008

18th Jan 2009, 19:30

I had the same idling issue when the temperature in my area changed suddenly (went from warm to very cold almost overnight).

Turned out I had a cracked intake. 500$ later, my Cougar runs fantastic. The only real expensive problem I've had with it since I got it.

18th Jan 2009, 21:10

My car has the same problem.