22nd Mar 2006, 08:23

Well, I own an 1976 mercury cougar, and it is pretty reliable, the biggest problem with it is the gas mileage. The only big problem I have had is, don't drive it a lot on a hot day, I had a lot of errands to run one day, and about half way home that day it overheated real bad, the starter blew, which wasn't too bad, it only cost me about $30 dollars or so, but now that I finally got it running again, there is a loud banging coming from the engine, sounds like a piston rod, I still have yet to take the engine apart and get it looked at. All of this probably has to do with the 260,000 miles on it, so at that mileage you can't ask to much more than to have the car run.

18th Dec 2006, 03:57

The FMX trans I hear was a trial and error. They were in the 1977 and 1978 and 1979 Cougars. They were more trial to see how they worked with the small block motor. I have gone through three of them, but found out your best replacement is a C6 trans; that's what worked for me. I hope I could help. If you want more information, I'll look more up to see what I can find.

28th Jun 2007, 23:15

I have a 76 - pretty much the same car with different sheet metal. Never had a problem with the windows. I have the C6 trans. I like this trans. I think it is the better of the three offered. C6, C4, and FMX.

20th Oct 2009, 19:50

145,000 miles and still holds 50lbs. oil pressure - That 400 was well-cared for. Most of them expire from low oil pressure. Good engine otherwise.

21st Oct 2009, 22:24

I've owned my 77 Cougar XR7 for about 12 years. Never been driven in snow as I live in the rust belt.

Mine has the 351-m with a c-4 trans I rebuilt after popping 3 of them. I've got the floor console & bucket seats, red with white interior.

Mine doesn't have factory air in it. Is this rare, I've never seen another one like it on any Ford/Mercury product of that era. If anybody has any feedback about that, would you please e-mail me at pysclone@yahoo.com


19th Dec 2009, 20:56

I own a 1977 Cougar gold on gold. I love it to death. I've had it a couple of years. Had to change the alternator, and my driver's window doesn't work sometimes, and my dash lights don't work occasionally. It is the 351M with the FMX; great and dependable.

4th Apr 2010, 15:38

I loved how everyone commented on the driver's window... mine did the same thing grabbing some drive-thru in -40c weather.

In fact, my '77 gold/gold XR7 was the only car I had ever owned, that I had the speedometer needle go all the way around, and touch the odo reset button shaft. 100 mph is not fast, but that 351M would've had some potential with a little work... and it was in a Mustang.

9th Jul 2010, 23:15

I own a fully restored 1978 Cougar XR-7 with the Midnight Chamois option. It is equipped with a 400 and a FMX tranny. I ordered this car new in September 77. Yes these power windows do suffer from water leaks (as does my wife's '91 Colony Park), so you have to make sure that the beltline seal to the window is good and there is a seal below the beltline chrome. Also make sure that the side mirrors don't permit any water to enter.

As for the FMX, fabulous transmission. When the car was new, I flogged it mercilessly and it took it like a faithful puppy. But now that it is restored inside and out, I don't do that anymore. I have (personally) re-clutched and re-banded the transmission twice over the years (the car has in excess of 200 k on it) when I changed dried out seals and gaskets. New clutches and bands are less than 50 bucks, so why be cheap when I have it apart.

Well built and reliable car. Starts on first click of the starter, even at minus 30. You might want to consider putting something back into it to keep it for another 30 or so years. Should be worth a lot by then.

Oh yes, I still have the original 90 amp alternator, although the rectifier and bearings have been changed.