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1997 Cougar Mk1 2.0 Coupe

Reviewed by:
Mako
on 27-February 14

Owning Experience

Owned For: 13 months
Good Points: Mk2 Mondeo Reliability With Light-Touch Edge Design Looks.
Bad Point: Nothing So Far.

Ratings

How It Drives:
Fuel Economy:
Reliability:
Practicality:
Overall Rating:

Unlike the Mondeo, they are generally babied and in good-to-excellent condition. But bear in mind that body damage may well be expensive to fix; there were only 8500 C1 Cougars (and 4000 C2s) delivered to this country so you might be looking to the US for anything major.

It was admittedly built in the US, but every example I have seen has had solid metal and minimal corrosion. They weren't built as Fords though - they were marketed over there as the luxury brand Lincoln-Mercury and were constructed accordingly for a discerning crowd. And don't forget that the imports were finished by Ford Germany for EU and TUV approval.

Not one of the common faults - such as the somtimes twitchy alternator - are specific to the car or expensive to fix.

Don't try to buy the specified tyres as they're either unobtainable or stupidly expensive. On the standard wheels, a decent 205/55-R16 is fine and I personally recommend Uniroyal.

In summary, this is a real under-rated belter with excellent reliability, solidity, build quality and a great P/W ratio. You can service it the same way you can a Mondeo and you shouldn't pay a premium, if you know to avoid Ford dealers who simply don't understand it. It's one of the best large coupes I've ever owned.

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