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Longtime Mistake owner here


MN88k1500
02-27-2004, 05:03 PM
Hi there. I'm new to this community and considering as how I just had yet another problem with my Mercury Mistake I thought I'd stop by and say hi.

I have a 1998 GS model. Lovely car. Great body. Good solid weight so it's got good traction in snow. Smooth ride. Exc. stereo system. Decent gas mileage. Comfortable interior. The best heater I've ever experienced.

Please note, I also had a friend who owned a 2000 Contour...which is essentially the Mistake without the fancy name.

My friend's car's tranny went out after only 85,000 miles. Surely this AFTER the warranty expired. Also had some other electrical problems that cost well near $1000 to fix. She dumped the car and got a couple hundred bucks for it on trade. (Owed $4000 on it)

Our car? Can't get rid of it. Nobody wants it. The dealer who sold it to us doesn't want it back. Said he'd give $250 for it on trade!! Sure, we have 181,000 miles on it, but we spent well into the thousands on repairing just about every conceivable flaw with the car. The last straw was the door latch. Just yesterday the danged door wouldn't close. For about 6 months we needed a "trick" to open the danged things (all but 1) and finally one stopped working. Of course it's the driver door. The passenger door can't open from the outside either. And that's a $150 repair!! The O/D Off light is blinking and after sitting parked for 3 months, the valve cover gasket started to leak. Oh well...it's being sold for parts. Got a new O2 Sensor, new alternator, whole new front suspension (because the cars have horrible front end suspensions that wear prematurely). But I will say this for it...the body sure holds up nice! Not a stitch of rust anywhere. These cars look good but they don't last and cost a fortune. We were nickle and dimed to death until we'd had enough!!! The prop rod was defective, the trunk leaks, the remote gas latch is faulty (doesn't work) the interior vent louvers are cheap, the interior lights work when they want to which is not very often..particularly on the door. I could go on but I won't bore you with any more details. All I know is that if you've got a Mistake, you're going to be stuck with it for a long time and the likelihood of putting at the very least, $1000 into it before your time together is over, is very high. The Ford/Mercury industry itself refers to this car as the "Mistake". Ask anyone at a repair shop. They'll tell you. I just wish I'd had Internet access when I was car hunting or I would never have bought this car.

Be forewarned. I'll be lucky if I can get around $500 for this sucker for parts!!!

beyondloadedSE
03-03-2004, 03:10 PM
Sorry to hear about your luck. I own a 1996 Ford Contour SE V6 5 speed and have owned the car since 98. It currently has 90K miles and the only maintance ive done to it other than replace the oil, tires, etc is the waterpump that went at 70K after two dyno pulls. Other than that, my car has been perfect. It gets driven fairly hard too. The syncros still engage just as smooth as the day i bought the car. Suspension handles great as well. Perhaps you just got an odd ball car. The duratec motor certainly isnt junk and neither is the mtx-75 5 speed transmission (The CD4-E automatic....well thats a different story). If that was the case, then Ford certainly wouldnt be putting the duratec into the Mazda 6, Jag x-type, Jag S-type, Lincoln LS, Escape, Taurus, Sable, and Aston Martin. Yes, thats correct the Aston Martin V12 is 2 duratec 3.0L's! :smokin:

untamedcivic
08-10-2004, 10:33 PM
my brother has a AT 96 mystique gs I4 with 140k miles. it has no major defects with the exception of the check engine light staying on (if you can call that a major defect). it gets poor gas mileage too. that's about it.

Markasaur
01-15-2005, 02:29 PM
I've got a 1995 Mystake.

OMG....I'm laughing so hard my eyes are watering. Why? Because thatís my car!

Vent louvers...yup, don't touch them, they're a house of cards
Trunk leak...yup
Gas lid stuck...yup, it works once in 50 times
Electrical...all the insulation its cracked to hell

The mechanics love to tell me how big an engine (6 cylinder) it has, and how small an engine compartment its got. ÖThat means they pad the bill an extra $300. $350 here, $800 there, I've had my check-engine light (after 7-10 minutes of driving) on for about 3 years. I'm trying figure out now why it's downshifting needlessly after 12 minutes of driving to work everyday. I think it has a self-destruct button I must have pressed by accident. I'm determined to keep driving it to work everyday though. It works great for the first 10 minutes, then its starts self-destructing the last 2 minutes. And I refuse to fix it anymore. Itís worthless like you say on a trade-in. The day it canít get me to work someday (in those last 2 minutes), thatís the day I step out of it, and walk away from it (abandon it) for good.

My adviceÖ.dump it before your warranty goes out.

beyondloadedSE
01-15-2005, 05:40 PM
Vent louvers...yup, don't touch them, they're a house of cards
Trunk leak...yup
Gas lid stuck...yup, it works once in 50 times
Electrical...all the insulation its cracked to hell



And yet, you could have gotten half these problems fixed under recall??

Gas lid - TSB 9692
Electrical harnesses - Recall 99M03

I got all 4 harnesses replaced under recall. Would have cost $1200. Gas lid i just took care of with some simple WD-40.

The stealership is going to rape you on labor regardless of the car that you have. Seriously, almost all of the minor problems for these cars can be fixed yourself, its just that people are oblivious as to how to turn a wrench. A lot of members on the contour/mystique enthusiasts site have swapped engines, including myself, and have never done anything that labor intensive before. If you dont wanna have to pay a couple hundred dollars for something simple like an 02 sensor swap, roll resistor replacement, etc, buy a Haines manual and use it people! Most this stuff is pretty straight forward anyways.

As for the CD4E automatic slushbox tranny. Well, i have no pity there. That transmission is a piece of junk. MTX-75 is where its at! :biggrin:

meltshop
01-28-2005, 01:08 PM
I can not get the hood up on my 1996 Mercury Sable any help would be appreciated , thanks

kennyt
01-23-2006, 02:12 PM
Hi I do agree when they brought out the cd4e trans .just finished rebuilding one and the main problem was the valve body in these the body wears and you get high line pressure which breaks the direct forward drum where the retaining ring sits.On buying all the upgrades to rebuild this tranny all mistakes or fords mistakes repaired you end up with a trans that should last the life of the car.One other problem is the filter is internal and you can't replace this without a teardown I recommend with this particular trans and really most of the new ones because of the high speed valves to replace your trans fluid every year and add a supplement called lubeguard as the trans fluid the lubrication properties break down and this is were most of the problem arises.And really all new cars, are they really building one that does last?don't think so- I have seen many of the newer cars trans fail under 55000 miles.really kind of sad on the amount of money spent on a new vehicle one would think you should have many miles trouble free except of course normal wear and tear:banghead:

kennyt
01-23-2006, 02:13 PM
[quote=kennyt]Hi I do agree when they brought out the cd4e trans .just finished rebuilding one and the main problem was the valve body in these the body wears and you get high line pressure which breaks the direct forward drum where the retaining ring sits.On buying all the upgrades to rebuild this tranny all mistakes or fords mistakes repaired you end up with a trans that should last the life of the car.One other problem is the filter is internal and you can't replace this without a teardown I recommend with this particular trans and really most of the new ones because of the high speed valves to replace your trans fluid every year and add a supplement called lubeguard as the trans fluid the lubrication properties break down and this is were most of the problem arises.And really all new cars, are they really building one that does last?don't think so- I have seen many of the newer cars trans fail under 55000 miles.really kind of sad on the amount of money spent on a new vehicle one would think you should have many miles trouble free except of course normal wear and tear:banghead:

ezd68n1
03-30-2006, 01:06 AM
i have a 98 mystique,can somebody tell me how to set the cam timing marks?the book says to use a speacial tool which i now own,but what way should the cams be turned or set?any info please,thanks....:dunno:

beyondloadedSE
03-30-2006, 11:36 AM
i have a 98 mystique,can somebody tell me how to set the cam timing marks?the book says to use a speacial tool which i now own,but what way should the cams be turned or set?any info please,thanks....:dunno:

depends on which motor you have. V6 or I4?

wafrederick
05-18-2006, 10:12 AM
The weak points are the engine and transmission.They are both junk.Most transmission shops will not get inside the automatic transmission,Ford is picky on the transmission.The drums inside of the transmission are plastic.The ground wires have to be in the right spot.If the the ground wires are not in the right spot,the drums will melt.Most auto salvage yards sell the automatic transmission left and right and have one year interchange.

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