2001 Mercury Cougar Base model 2.0 from North America
Sporty appearance, great mileage, dependable and fun
Faulty thermostat housing at 134,000 miles.
Sway bar brackets at 134,000 miles.
Valve cover gasket at 147,000.
Passenger front wheel bearing replaced at 155,000.
Front ball joints at 160,000.
Fuel gauge stopped working at 150,000.
The car had 130,000 on the clock when I bought it, so I knew there would be issues at some point. I had done plenty of research and learned enough to avoid the troublesome 6 cylinder/automatic transmission combo.
Although the 4 cylinder 2.0 was no speed-demon, its 125 horsepower was more than sufficient in town & on the highway, and the mileage was admirable (25 MPG in town, 32 to 35 MPG highway).
It was the aesthetics of this car which initially drew me to it; such a unique design! Even now, I miss just "looking" at it. It managed to look sporty without looking cartoon-like.
The stiff suspension was a bit jarring at times, but the car cornered phenomenally. Curvy roads = instant smiles.
The 2.0 proved to be a rock-solid engine; despite the high miles on the car, it never once ended up on the side of the road. No major issues at all, really. Still had the original clutch when I traded it in.
If you find a low-mile Cougar with the 2.0 and a manual transmission, buy it! You will absolutely love driving this car.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 5th April, 2014