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Cougar Support Group - Chats On...



  • camelardcamelard Posts: 171
    Sadly, I have joined the ranks of the 'former Cougar owners'. In my case it was the fear factor that chased me away. My dear Kitty, with all of 20K km suffered yet another minor electrical problem. This time unfortunately, the minor electrical problem resulted in the engine bursting into flames while I was driving on the Queensway at 120 clicks per/hr (Krnch will know what I am referring to). Despite the dealers assurance that the car could be fixed and would be "just like new " I decided not to take the chance and refused to take the car back.

    I am now driving a 2002 Focus ZX3 which, although can't be compared to the Cougar, has a much, much, much better reliability rating. I still feel a little like I am loosing a friend (many actually) but safety has to come first.




    Not sure what to say. Very sorry to hear about your marital problems but these things do have away of working out for the best. Not very consoling I know (sounds a bit like motherly advice) but my best wishes are with you.
  • aussyaussy Posts: 20
    back in Nov I bought the '02 cougar that they are being discontinued...does this mean the XR could become a collectable??
  • lmigliorelmigliore Posts: 148
    Your response sounds pretty reasonable to me. I don't think I could trust a car that bursts into flames for no particular reason. I nearly got rid of mine for not starting on two occasions; if it caught on fire I'd let it burn.
  • I sent Mercury back a letter letting them know the only reason I bought a Mercury was because of the Cougar and that another sporty car similar to it would probably be the only reason for me to consider Mercury in the future as well. I know it won't do any good, but it felt good anyway. :)

    I plan to keep my Cougar until it falls into a pile of unrecognizable pieces and if maintained properly then that means FOREVER! :)
  • burnsmr4burnsmr4 Posts: 318
    lmigliore -- that was absolutely the funniest thing I've ever heard! "I'd let it burn!" LOL!

  • lmigliorelmigliore Posts: 148
    I believe Darryl Strawberry said the same thing about Los Angeles.
  • camelardcamelard Posts: 171
    Believe me it was tempting!
  • dgeminidgemini Posts: 161

    Thanks for the prayers...I need them. Funny, since this whole thing occurred I have been going back to church and reading my bible more.

    I realize that if I am ever going to get straight to ensure something like this doesn't happen again I need to get right with God.


    I hope it does work itself out (I just put the divorce papers in the mail today) If she wants me back I will go back, if she doesn't? I will survive...recover...and meet some other beautiful women who believes I am worth hanging in there for.

    Sorry about your kitty going up in flames...I hope mine hangs in there. If I were still a family man (I married instant family, when I married my wife I had 4 kids, and 2 grandkid...I know...don't say anything) I wold have considered a Focus. I think the Focus is quite attractive, even the wagon. My soon to be ex test drove one and I really liked the size of interior and the handling.
  • coolchickcoolchick Posts: 174
    I've been lax about checking in here for a few weeks. Work was so busy for a while that I was putting in 15 hours a day for about 25 days straight. Dang! That's no way to exist.

    My kitty, God bless her little metal soul, is still running great. 20145 miles on her now.

    Took my bf out for a spin today. First time he's spent any time in the cat -- he always drives & we ride in one of his fastmobiles. He was very impressed with the interior styling (has always admired exterior design). Unfortunately, everyone else was playing hooky today, too, so the roads were too crowded to play much.

    Hey, Bad-man, are you visiting my area? I passed a black kitty with Joizey plates on it about 5:30 this afternoon.
  • krnchkrnch Posts: 127
    Thanks for the congrats, Camelard. Good luck with you new car.
  • jjp2jjp2 Posts: 10
    I'm still enjoying my 99 Cougar. Has 45,000 miles on it, and I have had no problems other than the hood release lever breaking twice. Just today, I finally bought a stereo with a cd player for it. Mine came stock with the "premium" stereo with cassette.

    I drive past the Mercury dealer where I bought my car twice a day during my commute. I had driven past it for two years without ever thinking about going in there, until I saw a cougar parked out in front. Now, I look at the cars out front, and realize that they don't have any that I will ever buy.
  • dasaint1dasaint1 Posts: 230
    Yeah, I haven't posted in a while. But I check in every now and then.

    Congratulations, Krnch. It must be an exciting time for you awaiting the arrival of Krnch, Jr.

    Anyway, I found something interesting about the Cougar that I didn't know before. I've been downloading some MP3s lately and finally decided to burn it onto a CD. I didn't know if the stock CD player in the Cougar would play MP3, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it did. That just gives me more motivation to download more MP3s. Looks like I'll be spending more time with Morpheus.
  • krnchkrnch Posts: 127

    Thanks, we're really excited.

    When you burned the MP3s to CD did your program convert them to CD format? If the stock stereo truly plays MP3s, that's pretty cool! I'll have to try it out. With my luck, it was probably added for the 2000 model year and my 99 won't play them. We'll see...


  • dasaint1dasaint1 Posts: 230

    No, I didn't convert it to CD format. But the stock CD is playing it.
  • Hey everyone. I don't think I've posted in about 18 months, but I was incensed enough when I got my little card in the mail, you know the one that says how valuable all of us Cougar owners are and how they would looooooove to keep our business, that I called the 800 number on the card and gave the guy an ear full. And then he explained that he was just an operator and he would connect me to the complaints department. Anyway, once I got to the complaints department I gave that gentlemen an ear full too. Turns out I was the third guy he talked to THAT DAY that was ticked off about the cougar's impending extinction. Who knows, if everyone who posts here or even just reads these calls that number, Bill Ford might reconsider. I mean he must be an old softy. Never mind the 25,000 people he put out of work, have you seen the new commercials? Very touching. But I digress; I doubt that there is anything that can be done to save the cougar, but who knows, I mean Party of Five stayed on the air because its fans got motivated, and that was a terrible show. The number is 1-888-566-8888 and you ask for the complaints department. I stressed how poorly the Cougar was marketed in comparison to, say, the Mitsubishi Eclipse.
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017

    Don't get me wrong. I'm very happy with my Cougar. But, I too got the "little card" that you received. I didn't think it was worthwhile sending it to where Mercury wanted it sent. Instead I wrote the following letter:

    Brian P. Kelley, President
    Lincoln Mercury
    19 Technology Drive
    Irvine, CA 92618

    Subject: Mercury Cougar

    Reference: Your recent Owner Survey

    Dear Mr. Kelley:

    I recently received an Owner Survey form attached to a form “letter” over your signature. The letter indicated that I am “a valued Mercury Cougar owner” and confirmed “2002 marks the final year for the Cougar.”

    The letter indicated, “your opinions, insights and intentions are important to us.” In view of that, I have chosen not to just return the enclosed “Help us serve you better” card, but to explain my concerns and great disappointment in the manner in which your company chose to kill off the brand, thereby causing me significant future financial loss in my investment.

    First, some background. In addition to my 1999 “New Edge” Cougar, I've owned (all but three of them new) the following vehicles: '56 DeSoto Fireflite Sportsman, '59 Plymouth Sport Fury, '64 MGB, '65 Dodge Dart GT, '66 MGB, '69 FIAT 124 Spyder, '72 Mazda RX3 (Wankel), '75 VW Rabbit, '80 VW Rabbit, '82 Nissan Stanza XE, '87 Toyota Corolla FX-16 GTS, '87 Toyota Celica GT, '90 Honda Accord LX, '95 Honda Accord LX, '96 Subaru Legacy GT and '97 Mercury Mystique GS. As you can see, I am not a kid and have for the past quarter century not had any interest in owning the typical Lincoln Mercury behemoth.

    I chose the Cougar because it was a departure from the ordinary in styling, based on the Mondeo platform that worked well for the Mystique (my sister-in-law is still driving that one), and a good value. Sure, the Cougar is slightly underpowered, even with the V6 and 5-speed, but I am generally pleased with my purchase. I might have been a customer for the Cougar S. What I am very displeased about is the virtually total lack of advertising that I observed in the time that I have owned my vehicle. Of course, it was not a marketing success. It was invisible. YOU DIDN’T MARKET IT!

    The only visible Mercury advertising dollars were spent on your bloated gas-guzzling bread and butter lines. They were not directed to the younger audience of non-graying buyers that you obviously should have been trying to sell. The Cougar was your entrée to that future potential market. You blew it.

    Your letter stated, “We do hope, however, that when you begin looking for a replacement vehicle, you remember that Mercury offers several models that are designed with many of the innovative elements that attracted you to Cougar - the Mountaineer and the Sable are two such models.” Other than paint colors, I cannot think of anything further from the fact.

    I plan to attend the upcoming New York International Automobile Show at the Javits Center and will be surveying choices for my next purchase. Frankly, your company’s current line holds no interest for me. In the coming months, I will be looking at the Legacy GT (if there is a turbo coming), the new Accord, RX8, 325, A4, etc.
  • I hope he actually gets it. Chances are, though, neither of our complaints will be heard. I hadn't even thought about the depreciation factor, now I'm even madder than ever.
  • dgeminidgemini Posts: 161
    Nice letter. I had a nice conversation with a guy a work with. I too told him about how little the Cougar was advertised.

    I also mentioned that it did what it was supposed to do, it did bring younger buyers into Lincoln Mercury showrooms.

    He owns and F-body Camaro that he has modded like crazy, he too feels the car was both undermarketed, AND overpriced next to the Mustang.

    Anyway...gotta go.!
  • burnsmr4burnsmr4 Posts: 318
    Atlanta, GA - In startling news today, ex-Cougar owner burnsmr4 was married to the infamous "Christmas Pickle Chick" in Winston-Salem, NC over the St. Patrick's Day weekend.

    burnsmr4 was spotted at a local country club dancing with and singing to his new bride, the "Christmas Pickle Chick."

    The bride was given her knickname after she left two big jars of "Christmas pickles" in burnsmr4's then beloved 1999 Mercury Cougar V-6. The jars rolled around while in transit and consequently broke, spilling pickles and pickle juice all over the front floorboard. burnsmr4 was in therapy for weeks after the incident.

    Oblivious to her husband's earlier mental trauma, the new bride was ecstatic at finally being married to the man that "understands" her infatuation with odd holiday baking.

    Although no pickles were served at the wedding reception, at the groom's behest, there were still automotive shenanigans going on.

    Acting on sheer stupidity, burnsmr4's groomsmen deftly painted the windows of his new 2002 Subaru Forester S with Glass Chalk. Demonstrating their academic failures as kindergarteners, the groomsmen painted outside the lines of the Subaru's window glass and proceeded to decorate body panels and trim pieces.

    Idiot bridesmaids were also involved in the debacle, as Glass Chalk made its way onto pristine Yokohama tires and aluminum alloy wheels.

    Said one blonde bridesmaid, "! This is like, you know, painting sorority cups!"

    It was sheer luck that Glass Chalk stains anything but glass and painted surfaces on a car. The red and white polka dots on the tires and trim were there to stay. No one thought to read directions/warnings beforehand.

    "Jesus Christopher Columbus Ohio and his mother! What did you do to my car?!" exclaimed burnsmr4 upon seeing what the groomsmen did to his new car.

    After some on-site therapy at the reception, burnsmr4 and his new bride managed to make it to Savannah, GA for a quiet, peaceful honeymoon. The couple will reside in Atlanta, far away from any of the groomsmen and bridesmaids in question.

    burnsmr4 contributed to this story. ;-)
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095

    And congratulations to you and your bride! My best wishes for a happy future...minus pickles, Glass Chalk, and bridal party, of course. :-)

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  • dgeminidgemini Posts: 161
    Congratulations, and best wishes to your bride!!

    Please love her and respect her needs as best you can (read Dr. Phil from Oprah).

    Also, I am glad you still frequent the board even though you have a Subaru.

    Take care
  • daexpertdaexpert Posts: 140
    Hello all! Don't know if you remember me but I haven't posted here in a looooooong time. Anyways, I'm still drivin the Cougar and no problems at all, it's been a good car, but then again, I only have like 22K miles on it and it's a 2000 Model. Unfortunately, I think I'm going to sell the car and probably go to the "dark side", get something like a Civic SI, an Integra, or a 200 Celica GT. I'm looking for a used car because I want to lower my monthly payments as much as possible and still have some performance to play around with. Hope your Cougar is treating you great as well, just wanted to stop by and say hey!
  • burnsmr4burnsmr4 Posts: 318
    I don't think I can stand to read Dr. Phil (pudgy Oprah groupie). ;-)

    However, I will love and respect her as long as she keeps Christmas pickles out of the Subaru, and even then, I'll go easy on her. ;-)

    Hope you all are doing well!


    P.S. - Does Badulah EVER come here anymore? StageLeft?
  • Congratulations!
    I would have posted this sooner, but when I got to "Said one blonde bridesmaid, "! This is like, you know, painting sorority cups!" I ended up doing a full on spit take with a mouth full of pepsi. So now I have a new keyboard. I think your (lack of) luck is being spread through cyberspace.
  • gustafscgustafsc Posts: 361
    Congrats on the niptuals and making an honest woman out of the pickle lady.

    As for your tire problem, unless they're unidirectional, have them remounted ($10.00/wheel) with the graffiti on the inside.

    Skip G.
  • burnsmr4burnsmr4 Posts: 318

    This is pure, useful advice -- if someone is dumb enough to use Glass Chalk on something other than your car's glass, remove the unwanted marks with mineral spirits (paint thinner). Even better, get one of the culprits to do it for ya. Took me 45 minutes yesterday, but my Yokohamas are polka dot free. Flammable (with all the mineral spirits I had to use), but polka dot free.

    The mineral spirits also cleaned up the rubber trim and black metallic trim.

    Re-mounting was only an option if I had made the bridesmaid responsible buy me a new set of Yokohamas herself. ;-) I'm a ruthless groom.

  • lmigliorelmigliore Posts: 148
    Oh, how low the Cougar boards have fallen! The first Owners' Group! The most posting! Now, there are long silences interspersed with non-automotive messages.

    It's Ford's fault. They let the cat die through inattention. so the New Edge Cougar never reached its potential. All we have left in the line is the Jaguar X, which is apparently not that great itself.

    Well, I'm still here, driving my Cougar short distances through traffic. Nothing has fallen off lately, and I'll probably keep the car 10 years like I always do.
  • irish21irish21 Posts: 12
    I read mostly and lately I haven't had the time to read the lists/forums I belong to.
    The members enthusiastic responses here to the Cougar was one of the reasons why I bought the Cougar. The other its unique style.

    99 Silver Cougar which just hit 30,000 miles the other day. The starter needs to be replaced. Per the dealer it will take them 2 days to install the starter. I was told if I wanted my starter repaired then I would have to find some way to get home. If I didn't want to leave the Cougar at the dealership and have them repair the starter, the dealer said the Cougar would probably strand me somewhere. I called the dealer and explained about the failure to start. They asked me if I wanted to bring the Cougar up Friday. My mistake was thinking the dealer was interested in fixing the Cougar. I was there at 6:30 a. m. They looked at the car at 8:30. It would have been courteous to tell me they were booked early. But then it also would have been courteous to tell the customer what they found when they examined the Cougar. The Cougar had been parked outside (for 20 minutes) and nothing was said to the customer. If it wasn't so nice out, I wonder if the service manager would have ever told me the Cougar needed a starter. I was leaning against the car enjoying the first warm sun of the season.

    I tried to buy a 2001, but the 3rd dealership damaged a mirror housing when they evaluated my Cougar. The mirror looked like someone put pressure until the housing separated from the body. This same dealership refused to repair the alternator I complained about. One March morning the Cougar died at a stoplight at 2 a.m. The Cougar had to be towed to the dealership. I was told that the part had to be ordered. I called several days later and inquired if the part was in. I was told no. But in fact the part was in and it was given to a male customer who had no problems. I knew this because I worked with the male customer. He and I bought our 99 Cougars in the same month. By this time there had been a recall. So that particular dealer gave me lousy service on the sales side and the service side.

    The first dealer tried to charge me an 800 delivery fee.

    The second dealer didn't put the Cougar's gas tank together properly. Also they misaligned the gas cap so I couldn't put gas in the Cougar. The gas tank registered full, only it wasn't. I worked the Midnight shift back then. Suddenly while traveling the highway, the car started loosing power. Fortunately I was in the slow lane and was able to coast to the breakdown lane. If I had been in the other lanes, the Cougar would have stopped dead in a travel lane. How I found out the gas tank was not right? Gas makes a pretty big puddle when you fill up the gas tank. I imagine the owner was not very happy to see a full tank of gas flow all over the ground.

    So I have been stranded late at night and early morning due to service depts that refused to do their job. Right now I have to pay for a rental because the 4th dealership refused to treat me with courtesy. I made an inquiry and heard that a starter can be installed in less than a day. Two days are not needed to install a starter. I love my Cougar and its styling, but obviously I have to look elsewhere. Most of my problems happened because the dealer refused to give me competent, courteous, timely service. If the 4th dealer didn't want to bother with my Cougar, he should have told me and not leave me stranded at his dealership. There is NO way that I will buy a new Cougar from those dealerships. Hopefully that dealer will fix the starter Properly and correctly. But I have my doubts based on the way the dealer treated his customer.
    Malpractice insurance for dealers sounds pretty good from here. Maybe if dealerships were under the same job/performance scrutiny as doctors, they might consider the way the dealership does business. The dealership might think twice about deceiving, lying, cheating, misrepresenting facts.

    I would love to get the new Cougar, but I have no reputable, competent, courteous dealers in my vicinity.
  • aussyaussy Posts: 20
    if you are in CA and looking to buy a new cougar I can make a very good recommendation.....the dealership i purchased from has given me incredible service......when i purchased the car...i negotiated to have the front windows tinted.....three months after i bought the car i took it in for the window tinting....they performed the service....i had to leave my car....they comped me a rental car for 2 days....when i had the oil changed....i took the car in on a sat...they shuttled me home.....when the car was ready...they brought the car to my home....(i live about 5 miles from the dealership).....i am having the rear windship wiper motor changed.....last weekend i took it in for diagnosis....the took me home...then returned my cougar to me at home....this sat i take the cougar in to have the rear wiper motor changed...they are going to comp me a rental car until my cougar is i said...come to my neck of the woods and i will take you to a dealership that knows what customer service is......
    the aussy
  • irish21irish21 Posts: 12
    I appreciate the offer, but right now I live on the East coast. My brother lives in San Francisco.
    I like the West Coast. When it's time to retire, I'm thinking of moving to the West Coast. Vancouver Canada is Awesome. The climate there is warmer than it is back here. Our beaches have water temperature in the 50's. 60 is reallly warm. Somewhere on the West Coast is where I plan. It's nice to know that there are decent dealers somewhere. Thanks again.
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