I have been waiting for a car like this all of my life. I too had to deal with replacing the fuel pump and the stock stereo that does not play CD-Rs. But I went to autocross school this past weekend with it and ROCKED! My first race day I took home a second place trophy. If you want an original, not cookie cutter, sport sedan, get your hands on one if you can. The most enjoyable car I have EVER owned!
HANDLING, sounds incredibly awesome (test drove a WRX and didn't want it because it didn't sound anywhere near as good), ergonomically perfect for me, white face gauges.
Water pump with something other than a plastic impeller, jack insert on the side skirts are very hard to manipulate and break/fall off way too easily, should come with 17" wheels rather than 16 (Focus SVT wheels do the trick).
I was kind of skeptical when I bought this car. I just recently before totaled my 96 Mustang GT. I loved that car and it broke my heart to have to purchase another vehicle. The Mustang was paid for and with being assigned risk I knew that I couldn't finance a Mustang and afford the insurance on it as well. I had seen this 2000 Contour SVT sitting on the lot at my local Ford dealership for a couple weeks. Very sharp looking car. Custom wheels, tinted windows, system, sunroof, leather interior....the whole 9 yards. So I decided to go see what they were asking for it. Didn't think I would like a 4 door. I signed the papers that day and I'm still driving it. It was love at first drive. It's awesome.
The handling...ground effects, moonroof, and well that little 2.5L DOHC packs a punch as well. It's a very sporty yet economical car.
The only thing I can think of is that pesky little passenger side cup holder. Nothing ever wants to stay in it. When someone rides with me they have to hold their beverage.
This car is fun to drive. I have autocrossed and taken it to a road course. The steering is awesome, the torque build up is linear, same with the brakes, they don't surprise you by doing something you did not expect or ask them to do, and they respond to your input quickly. The exhaust note sounds great, even better when combined with a Cold Air intake. The car does have issues though. I have had to replace the moonroof motor 3 times, fuel pump, front supension components, fog lights burn out all the time, lack of replacement OEM size tires (need to upgrade to 17" rims/tires if you want a good selection), and others issues I have forgotten about.
Handling, steering and braking are top notch. Exhaust sounds great.
Longer lasting fuel pump, longer lasting fog lights, stiffer body, limited slip differential, nicer interior (a little plain), better ride over uneven/potholed roads, and a better radio are all items that would have been nice in the car when i bought it.
This is truely a great "drivers" car,
handles so well stock, and it just has
that certain look. It is a true
sleeper too, hardly anyone knows what
the SVT Contour is, so it makes it
that much more special.
The car is an absolute joy to be in.
It's very responsive and handles well.
It looks good, and I have not had any
problems with it other than basic
maintence. The engineering on it
allows one to work on the car
him/herself without much difficulty.
The Ford Contour SVT is an overall
great product, and pleasant experience.
The leather seats are very comfortable,
and the car has much power. The
handling is quite impressive without
losing ride quality.
Better roll bars and perhaps an
improved radio (although that is the
easiest radio to replace)