27th Jun 2009, 00:22

Just bought a 1999 Cougar for $2000.00, engine light on, I'll have it checked. Paint chipping off under both doors near fenders, runs great, wish me luck, Dave.

8th Jul 2009, 13:17

I have had the same problem with the check engine light on... I am pretty sure its because the car has a vacuum seal problem. It usually happens when I get gas, check my oil, etc. If you put it on tighter, it will be less likely to break the vacuum. Now to fix the blinkers...

27th Aug 2009, 15:00

Not to sound repetitive, but I feel better knowing it's not just my 99 Cougar with all the problems...

Since I bought it about a month and a half ago... the check engine light is always on... smell of burnt oil... some sort of surging or jerking or I don't know what it is...

When I get up to speed, around 50 or 60 my RPMs will rev up if I have my foot on the gas, or drop if I don't... so I am assuming it's the transmission... or it could be one of the recalls, or the oil leaking - I don't know... but I don't have the money to fix it other than the transmission, which is currently under warranty from the dealer, so that may be my first step...

Also the weird noise when I am trying to start it happens sometimes... it's like a squealing or something, I don't know... anyway, let me know if anyone has some advice on what could be causing the problems.


15th Sep 2009, 13:41

I am going to test drive a 1999 Cougar tomorrow evening. It has 175,000 miles on it. Is that pushing the limit on these cars? How long do they last before becoming extreme problems?

I can't afford to put thousands of dollars into a car each year. I'm only offering $1500 for it. If my boyfriend gives me the OK, which he is very picky, I am planning on buying it.

I'm nervous now after reading all these reviews, but I'm only in college and this would be a major upgrade from my 1994 Chevy Corsica with 290,000 miles! Let me know if it's a good car for this price!

21st Sep 2009, 11:08

Hello! I've had my '99 Cougar for 5 years and haven't had any problems until the last two years...

I had the same issue many are having, the check engine light was on. Had O2 sensors replaced, ran diagnostic checks on it. Finally found out, three years later, what the check engine light meant - my catalytic converters were going. My auto center didn't catch it until all three converters were shot and causing the car to run erratically (using high RPM for slight acceleration, shaking while idling, reving of the engine while braking). Replaced all three (ouch!) but the check engine light hasn't been on for over a year now.

Had a few minor problems since, replaced a rotor earlier this summer and last night my alternator went bad, but all in all nothing you wouldn't expect from a 10 year old car.

All in all, I love how this car drives! It's a great car and I'm willing to put in the money for maintenance just to keep my Cougar on the road.

29th Oct 2009, 08:34

If you have changed your battery and also checked your alternator, I would also have the wiring harness checked.

As there maybe a short somewhere.

2nd Nov 2009, 18:55

Man, you guys have me scared. I'm suppose to get a Cougar tomorrow. I test drove it today and loved it. The steering was nice and tight, the pick up is fast, not to mention the car is a cute, sporty look that I just love.

I'm going from a 2005 Dodge Neon, which was a great car, but unfortunately for me, I wasn't the only one who thought so, and it was stolen and crashed the beginning of this year (2009). So this car is the only used car I felt was good for the price.

I too am a college student and don't have $1000 to put in a car every year on top of that. I already have to get new rear shocks, new radio, and new backseat speakers for the car. There also isn't a cover over the gear shift either, but I figured I could get one of them from Walmart or something, but all-in-all, is it worth it in the end? Because this car is going to be my car for a good while until I can get my lawsuit money and get another car, because my other one was stolen and totaled.

12th Nov 2009, 15:39

I am so scared. I found a 1999 with only 69,000 miles on it. I was thinking this is great, but now I am scared? Please I need some advice. I don't have that kind of money to keep spending on a car... It's going to cost me 3 grand, that is ALL I have. Should I keep looking. Send me an email stephanieward81@yahoo.com

14th Nov 2009, 09:29

Interesting reading here. I'm 54, just bought a 99 Cougar, 70k miles.. and boy what an eye opener. As someone who does their own maintenance and most repairs... working in that engine compartment is a bear!

I have the flickering light problem... the only complaint or issue I have with mine so far. Researching the fix on the internet hasn't solved my problem. I would like to know if there's a genuine solution. Alternators, batteries, headlight switches have all been suggested. But none seem to really fix the problem. Anyone know of what will REALLY fix the problem? Doesn't seem to be an issue as far as operation of the vehicle... just one of those annoying situations that I'd like to remedy. Recall on the battery re-route has been performed.

Also... reading most of the comments here.. I'd suggest for most people to study their owner's manuals... For example... it is recommended when disconnecting the battery.. that you leave the the battery disconnected for a minimum of 20 minutes to allow the cars computer to reset itself. Thereafter it says it takes three driving sessions for the computer to relearn what's it supposed to do. I found that out after having issues with fast idle/slow idle after messing around with my flickering headlights/battery connections.

If anyone has the real cure for the flickering headlights... I'd love to hear from you... you can E-Mail me at Mzinzer@Comcast.net.


14th Nov 2009, 14:53

Flickering light can result from a cracked circuit board. The vibration will result in flickering. To check this requires disassembly of the dash cluster and visual inspection. It can also result from a loose connection or broken wire. I would check with Ford (not a Dealer, it is not in their best interest to tell you how to find/fix problems) and insist on talking to a tech.

27th Nov 2009, 15:55

I have had a '99 Cougar for just over a year now. Until this fall I didn't have any trouble with it. The rear shocks just started to go before winter, and the power window switches are giving out. Then I discovered the front motor mount was broken out of the transmission housing. (To fix this, I would need to remove the entire engine and the part cost approx. $3000) Then one day I started it up and heard a ticking noise from the internal engine. Thinking it was a stuck valve, I poured in an additive, but with no results. I took off the valve covers to inspect the 24 valves, looking for signs of a bent valve, or jumped timing chain, again to no avail.

I then decided to remove the engine to find out what was causing this noise, and to attempt to fix the transmission/motor mount. I went to a mechanic, and for a few bucks, bought a manual that described in detail, the steps to removing the engine. I followed the steps and removed the motor and tranny with little difficulty.

After removing the timing chains and turning the motor by hand, I found that the crankshaft resisted in one certain spot on every rotation. After removing the cylinder head, I discovered my problem... a small screw had worked itself loose from the intake manifold and fallen down onto the piston. Fortunately, there wasn't enough damage to the piston or the heads to have to replace either one.

Now I'm getting my transmission welded and replacing the timing chains (as they were due for a change anyway) and then I'm hopefully on the road again :)

I really enjoy driving a Cougar as it's a sporty little car, and these types of problems that I've had with it could have happened to any vehicle. No vehicle is maintenance free, and the Cougar is no different.