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1994 Mercury Cougar

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Consumer Reviews & Ratings

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 159 Ratings for the 1989 - 1997 models.

Review this car
more rating details
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    8.7/10
  • Reliability
    8.8/10
    Performance
    8.8/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    8.6/10
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Little known jewel

By on Thursday, October 30, 2008

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"I have owned two Cougars since 2000. I bought the first, a 1990 V6 LS, in 2000 with 75,000 miles in New York and I drove it in NY, as well as Newfoundland, Canada, for another 100,000 miles. The car had a head gasket replaced before I bought it - common problem with the V6 engine, apparently - and, for the seven years I owned it, I replaced one leaky water pump, both front shocks as they were too soft and caused car's nose to bounce a little too much, brake pads twice and front rotors once. Other than this, NOTHING - all in all, about $1000 in repairs while driving about five times the length of Equator. I wish Ford would have never given up making these cars, they were design wonders. The rust finally got my 90 Cougar in Newfoundland - they use a lot of salt around here to keep the roads usable - but the engine and tranny were still running fine. The interior was a little on the cheap side. The V6 got me about 27-28 mpg highway, while rush hour NYC pushed it down to 12-13 mpg - I find this amazing for a 3.8 liter V6. The car drives amazingly well, you get to appreciate the 2.5 tons of iron when cruising, especially if you compare it to a smaller car. Cornering is also amazing for such a big car, ojt to mention that the RWD allows the front wheel to steer better than most FWD cars - these Cougars turn tighter than a Mazda 6. One downside I need to mention though, especially if you're a DYI kind of guy, is the relative poorly layout of the engine - I never managed to avoid scratching my hands when replacing the spark plugs, the space is simply too tight. And this brings me to my second Cougar, a 1994 XR7 with a 4.6 VB engine on it. I bought it from its first owner in Florida earlier this year. The car has 33,500 miles on it and no traces of rust, and everything is in mint condition. There is a world of difference between the two model years. For starters, the interior has been finally designed as it should (the "wrap-around" dash), the controls have been greatly optimized, and the whole interior has been brought to the same top level with the outside and the powerplant. The modular V8 is a gem: you could teach car mechanics to anyone with this engine, it is amazingly well arranged. Ford did away with the old, belt-driven fan, so now the engine warms up faster in colder climates. I only regret the sound of that old engine, imho the V6 sounded better than the V8. When spun up, the V6 was like an airplane taking off, while the V8 screams raw power - it sounds like a classic muscle car's engine. One other good thing Ford did on the 1994 was to redo the tranny - the '90 was shifting errhatically from 3rd to 4th, sometimes with a big hiccup. None of that left on the 94 - instead you get a tranny that lets you shift down from 4th to 3rd with a press of a button on the shifter (overdrive on/off), and also select 2nd and 1st if you so desire. My 90 Cougar performed beautifully on snow without ABS, if you know how to use engine braking, you'll be fine on snowy roads. I'm not saying you'll go off-road with the Cougar, but city/highway driving in snow is safe and quite fun. Also, being so wide and not too tall makes these cars stick to the road in turns like they're glued in - it'll take a lot of abuse to make them skid sideways. And for those SUV fans out there, Ford put a smarter alternative to expensive electronic stability control systems 15 years ago into these cars - it's called a lower gravity center through design. I'm yet to hear about an overturned Cougar. Mazda did the same with RX7 and Subaru with their boxer engine. All in all, an extremely well built car, surprisingly economical given the power plant hiding under the hood, high quality parts (and decently-priced spare parts readiiy available), very safe and extremely comfortable, especially for long trips. Suspension is smooth - independent rear suspension in an era when the rear axle was commonplace - and the handling is great. If you can get your hands on one of these Big Cats, don't hesitate. And for those who'll say that you'll pay a lot on gas with these cars, I'll share my own experience: as long as you play nice with the gas pedal, your mileage compares with modern V6 cars. really."

13 people out of 13 found this review helpful

20 years old & still running like a top

By on Thursday, February 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 167,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Luxurious & you can see 360 degs out of it"

Cons: "hard to park especially in small places"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My 20 yr old Cougar XR7 is still a very good car. The V8 engine does just fine. No 0 to 60 in seconds - a big car doesn't "handle" & it's a gas guzzler. This is my 2nd -1st was a new 1985. The '94 was bought used, but has lasted longer. I LOVE COUGARS! It just passed the emissions test! Rear ended - not a scratch. This car is built like a TANK!"

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

111,100 aprox.

By on Friday, October 14, 2011

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 111,100

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Fully independent suspension,good power,comfort."

Cons: "Shifts to OD to fast."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

0 Rust.My 1997 XR-7 Cougar.

"I have the anniversary edition Cougar XR-7 with the SOHC 4.6 V-8 and the 3 speed OD=4 transmission.I average 24mpg daily driving a mix of hilly roads and highways.I love this car it never lets me down starts without fail,hot, cold,snow,rain night or day.Corners excellent due to the rear independent suspension a BIG .Mine has the am/fm cassette,which is outdated,nothing to complain about cause it sounds AWESOME,really good stock stereo system.I would rate this car on a scale of 1 through 10 a 9.I'm 38yrs old and this is by far one of the most dependable and funnest car i'v yet to own."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

0 Rust.My 1997 XR-7 Cougar.

Good car

By on Sunday, January 03, 2010

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

"I obtained a 94 Cougar XR7 from a co-sign gone wrong. As a result I took possession of the car. I owned it for 10 years. It had the 4.6 ltr V8 engine. I was amazed at how economical it was. I was getting 21-22 mpg mixed city/highway and on a trip to Vegas actually got 30 mpg highway driving at 70-75 mph! That's awesome for a automatic V8. Comfort and ride quality were top-notch. Handling was a bit mediocre, but this isn't a sports car. Car had plenty of power and at 105K miles it didn't burn any oil at all. As far as reliability is concerned, it was decent. I did replace the PCM and various sensors. The front brake rotors had a problem with warping every couple years or so. Also the transmission started getting the converter vibration when locking @ 75K miles. I installed a mild shift kit and fresh Mercon 5 fluid and that seems to solve the issue. Overall, I was very pleased with the car and only got rid of it because I had too many other vehicles."

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

This car will NEVER quit!!!!

By on Thursday, October 10, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 322,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought my 1997 Cougar new and had it custom ordered from the factory. Man, am I glad I got it exactly the way I wanted it since I have had it now for 17 years and it is still going strong. I have a long commute each day (100 miles total) and I can't imagine doing it in any other car. I just clicked over 322,000 miles on it earlier this week. I haven't had any major repairs on it in all that time, just normal wear-and-tear items. The engine is original and I didn't have to have the transmission rebuilt until I hit the 290,000 mile mark. I do all the recommended maintenance and it runs as good today as it did when new. I keep it garaged both at home and work, so even the paint still looks good. The V-8 has ample power for freeway merges and gets surprisingly good mileage, but it's definitely not a hybrid! :) I absolutely LOVE this car!"

4 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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