2000 Mercury Cougar from North America


Looks great, but get ready to spend


Alternators, alternators, alternators. Am I up to six yet? Because that is how many it's gone through. My Dad was the original owner of this car, and purchased it brand new in 2000. Within the first 20,000 miles, one alternator had been replaced. That started the ball rolling, and he put three in total. In June of 2006, the alternator went again and left me stranded. Then, I replaced one, along with the battery in May 2007, and three months later I just had another one put in.

My dash lights dim and flicker all the time. They have since I've owned the car. I am sure it is electrical, having to do with the alternator situation.

On my last alternator replacement, the mechanic said that it had something to do with air flow that was causing the alternators to go. Me? I have no clue.

The driver side window rolls up when it feels like it. Sometimes, it will be down about half way, and I hit the "up button" only for it to roll all the way down and stay down sometimes for days. I have had the window motor and switch replaced, and it continues to happen.

The A/C blows cold out of one vent, but warm fan air comes out of the others. Truly mind boggling.

General Comments:

When these cars first came out, I was in love. When my Dad purchased one brand new, I was incredibly jealous, and when he offered to give it to me a few years later, I jumped at the chance.

This car has been nothing but problems. It is such a shame, because it looks great on the surface. But I feel like I have it in the shop once every other month. It has been religiously maintained, and there is simply no excuse for it. Six alternators?

A good friend of mine bought a brand new Cougar with all the bells and whistles in 2001. Within her first 30,000 miles, she had it in the shop over 20 times. All was covered under warranty, but she ended up getting an attorney to file a lawsuit and have the car removed from her credit. She won, too. So I would encourage anyone else going through this to try the same.

My previous car was a Nissan Pathfinder, and at 180,000 (I still have it), all parts are original and running great. It truly speaks volumes about how terribly Ford products are made.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th September, 2007

2000 Mercury Cougar 2.5 Duratec from North America


ZN Cougar should be "Lemon Yellow" not "Zinc Yellow"


Smog shop found six manufacture and OBII codes. IMRC circuit failure. O2 failure (2 codes). EVAP/Gas tank pressure sensor (2 codes). Disconnected DPFE hoses.

Changed O2 sensor. Changed fuel pump and pressure sensor. Changed DPFE hoses. Looking for cheap IMRC actuator, and thinking about changing manifold gaskets (vacuum leaks).

General Comments:

I remind myself that the engine is a 2.5 Duratec, which is one of Ford's best small engines. It is the car's electrics and emissions that are most problematic and aggravating. Stupid things such as premature failures of the front hub bearings, alternator, fuel pump, and remote trunk switch are part of a long list of Ford's apparent oversight for this model car.

The Cougar has great euro-inspired sports car lines. It is more spacious than a Cobalt, quicker than most Golfs, and quieter than any of the compacts.

I plan on keeping the car. I have invested so much time into locating and fixing the problems, I now know where to find and how to fix most of the replaceable parts in the car. I agree that there are too many manufacturer oversights (defects) in the car, and I agree with edmunds.com, which reviewed six sports coupes in 2001 and scored the Cougar dead last. But I bought the car for its styling (and engine).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 14th August, 2007