By Wxdog on
1997 Ford Contour LX 4dr Sedan
I bought this four-banger ("Sport" version) when it was 3-years old. It's performed very well. Excellent mileage on the highway but just OK in the city. Really good handling was always noted by the critics and anyone who drives my car is surprised by its performance. It has a somewhat bland/odd exterior. Critics complained the legroom in the back wasn't enough. To me it's fine unless you have long legs. There is a persistent problem with a switch for the heater/AC control. It's a recall so it gets replaced when it breaks (every 3-years or so) for free. The timing belt broke at about 65,000 miles, a few miles beyond when the manual says to replace it. Be warned.
Big windows...great visibility. Excellent durability of paint/finish.
Better cup holders. Annoying "Check engine light" that comes on intermittently. Dealership says it's a common problem but there's nothing to worry about...which has been true over 9 years.