Used 1997 Mercury Cougar Coupe

1997 Mercury Cougar
List price range
1997 Mercury Cougar


  • This boulevard cruiser can be turned into quite a sporty car with the addition of the 4.6-liter V-8 engine and anti-lock brakes.


  • We're not to crazy about the styling and think that some of the option packages are a bit silly. For example, why does a luggage rack appear in the luxury appearance group? What in the heck is luxurious about luggage?
Mercury Cougar years

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

Mercury sells half as many Cougars as Ford does the mechanically identical Thunderbird. Not bad, considering Mercury's more limited dealer network and the Cougar's more conservative styling. In concept, the Cougar is a traditional luxo-coupe boulevardier, but when infused with Ford's potent modular 4.6-liter V8, the Cougar's purr becomes a snarl.

Amazingly, the hefty Cougar V8 turns in some pretty impressive performance figures. It feels much quicker and lighter than it actually is. The exterior features traditional cues such as a chrome grille and formal roofline. Unfortunately, these looks make the Cougar a prime candidate for aftermarket or dealer-installed luxury packages' that include such gimcrackery as tacky opera lamps, fake convertible roof applications, and yucky gold trim add-ons. Not even the factory can resist cluttering Cougar's lines; a non-functional luggage rack is available on the options list. Inside, the Cougar offers first-class accommodations for five, with a sweeping dashboard that provides a cocooned cockpit feel to front passengers.

Since this is the last year for the rear-wheel drive Cougar, Mercury has decided to make it a special model. An Anniversary package is offered for buyers who want to commemorate this car's passing. The package includes a sportier suspension, plenty of badges, a unique interior, Toreador red paint, special seat, cool wheels, and better tires. If we were buying one, however, we would probably stick with the Sport Appearance Package. We don't know what it is, but anniversary edition cars always look a bit silly after a few years.

This iteration of the Cougar has been on the market since 1989, and this is your last chance to get one. If you have been saving your pennies for this car, it's time to cash in.

1997 Highlights

Mercury gives you the chance to buy a special anniversary edition replete with plenty of badges, a special interior and a few luxury doo-dads.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Mercury Cougar.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Sorry they're gone
I love my cougar and if they had one today just like it - I would buy it on the spot. Never had a problem until recently with emission. That is almost 13 years trouble-free. 1997 was last of the big cats and now mercs will be gone all together. There is no match for a cougar lover! I loved owning this car and the interior - for the money - all leather and so comfortable. Love the feel of a heavy car, the way it cruises along. Good bye sweet kitty.
97 Cougar
I have had no problems with the car. The V8 accelerates well and smoothes out on the highway. The car has a stiffer sport suspension option that handles nice. Leather is a good fit for the interior. The exterior is a plus with the pearl paint finish.
I love my cougar!!!
I love this car! Bought in '00 off of a lease.Never had one problem (beside manifold blowing up on christmas eve!- Recall i didn't know about!) Otherwise a beautiful car with great handling, acceleration and comfortability. I baby this car and can get a new car-but why? Eats a lot of gas but what can you ask of a v8. I wish they still made this model. I lucked out on this 30th anniversary edition it even came with tint! I do go through a lot of brakes...
1997 XR-7 Sport Model
Big Ern,06/11/2002
Bought new--Every time we think about trading it in, we remember all the good stuff--the superb handling, the terrific styling--still looks great!!-- comfort on long rides--etc., etc.!! Can't say enough about it!! It's the sports model, and in all these years, I've seen only two others--it's a rare car!! Maybe that's what I like best. Just got new tires--only because the others were 5 and a half years old!
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Features & Specs

16 city / 24 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
145 hp @ 4000 rpm
See all Used 1997 Mercury Cougar Coupe features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger1 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1997 Mercury Cougar
Used 1997 Mercury Cougar Coupe Overview

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Can't find a used 1997 Mercury Cougar Cougar Coupe you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Mercury Cougar for sale - 8 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $13,293.

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Find a used certified pre-owned Mercury for sale - 8 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $8,448.

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Should I lease or buy a 1997 Mercury Cougar?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Mercury lease specials
Check out Mercury Cougar lease specials