I bought my Contour in July of 2001, it was a year old at the time. It was okay for the first few years, but just okay. Then, before I even finished paying it off, I had to have the transmission rebuilt. Then, in December of 2011, it went out AGAIN. The thing had 91,000 miles on it. It shouldn't need a new transmission every 45,000 miles, if you ask me.
Honestly, there was really nothing I liked about this car except for the engine power, the "get up and go". The steering was bad, the stability was bad, it was just a bad car.
They discontinued this car for a reason. Caveat emptor.