really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
64,989 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 1998 Ford Contour:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

problem #45

Nov 212018


  • miles
"takara recall" my heater motor in my 98 Ford Contour SE just stopped working.

- Paradise, PA, USA

problem #44

Jun 202018


  • 147,000 miles
Was driving down route 322 on day and had to hit the break and all of a sudden they went to the floor. I pulled over and checked my break fluid resivour and it was empty. I think the passenger side drum break is leaking fluid.

- Paradise, PA, USA

problem #43

Nov 022013

Contour 4-cyl

  • 163,000 miles
I just traded and got this car, it seems to sway in the back going over wet roads or bumpy roads not sure what it is, but I fear my safety as the previous owner did not tell me about this. I also have noticed that the temperature gauge does not work and the heater blower only works on high. I cannot afford to get things fixed if there is recalls on them.

- Hart , MI, USA

problem #42

Aug 082013


  • miles
I am the owner of a 1998 Ford Contour and the engine harness wire overheated over a long period of time and I was unaware until I had to change my radiator due to a leak and the harness wire had to be disconnected. That was when we found the wire melted and cracked and could not be reused. This harness connects to vehicle main supply. Without harness vehicle is not operable. Ford should be responsible to replace defective harness.

- Lafayette, LA, USA

problem #41

Aug 012011

Contour 4-cyl

  • 140,000 miles
The engine wiring harness which connects to the vehicle's main power supply box has wiring for which the insulation comes off exposing live, bare wires. This leads to shorts in the electrical system which affects drivability (engine runs erratically and affects the electric fuel pumps operation) and could lead to a vehicle fire if the wiring suffers catastrophic failure. It goes without saying that if the car's fuel supply or engine control systems fail, the driver may lose control and become involved in a crash or collision. Ford does not sale replacement parts nor are parts available on the secondary market. The part number for the wiring harness on my car is F8rz14289ca. Ford should be required to replace these defective harnesses.

- Oak Ridge, TN, USA

problem #40

Apr 102011


  • 107,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. The contact stated while driving various speeds his tail lamps, parking lamps, and the instrumental panel malfunctioned. The vehicle was not inspected by a dealer nor was it repaired. The manufacturer was contacted and offered no assistance. The failure mileage was approximately 107,000.

- Richfield, MN, USA

problem #39

Apr 042011

Contour 4-cyl

  • 135,000 miles
My 1998 Ford Contour has three safety recalls. However, I'm having a terrible time getting Ford to provide the parts needed to service the vehicle. The recalls are: (a) 01S22 - heater blower resistor and connector, (B) 99S14 - headlight switch connector, and (C) 99S23 - front crash sensors. Presently my airbags are offline and offer no crash protection. It's been a little over a month since I began trying to get this resolved (basically when I bought the car - the seller didn't disclose the recalls were not fixed to me). The blower stopped working a few days ago and it smelled like electrical wires were perhaps burning. So now I don't have defrost/defog capability. The dealer is trying to get the parts, but Ford hasn't shipped them.

- Oak Ridge, TN, USA

problem #38

Feb 232011

Contour 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 93,000 miles
I own a 1998 Ford Contour SE V6 manual trans VIN #[xxx] the under the hood wiring harness is failing there was a recall for this defective part but Ford continues to say that my car is not under the recall the insulation on the wiring harness has completely flaked or crumbled off causing the car not to run or potential deadly fire no help from Ford Motor Company. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Meridian, MS, USA

problem #37

Jun 012010


  • 284,371 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. The contact stated that the driver was driving at an unknown speed when the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was towed to the contact, who was a certified independent mechanic, where he discovered that all of the wires under the hood were exposed and corroding. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 284,371.

- Concord, VA, USA

problem #36

Jul 232010


  • 195,000 miles
Wiring connector that feeds the HVAC system burned and melted the connector plug and main fuse block at the point of the connector. This wire was a size 10 awg and is oversized for the connector that it is used for. This caused a fire at the connector. I have picture is you would like a copy.

- Independence, MO, USA

problem #35

Jul 052010


  • 92,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. While driving approximately 35 mph the vehicle lost all power. The contact was able to coast onto the emergency lane. The vehicle was towed to a local mechanic who stated that the vehicle had severe electrical problems and suggested that the vehicle be taken to an authorized dealer. The dealer advised the contact that the wiring harness needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage were 92,000.

- Glendale, CA, USA

problem #34

Mar 222010


  • miles
I heard about the Ford Contour engine wiring harness recall only by internet. My car is a Ford Contour sport 1998. The wire insulation is peeling off in the whole harness, and the car is stopped now. Mileage is approx. 110000. I never received any message from Ford. I am the only owner of the car.

- Monterrey, 00, USA

problem #33

Mar 272010


  • 80,000 miles
The wiring insulation on my 1998 Ford Contour is literally falling off the wires. I am afraid to touch any wire because the insulation just flakes off leaving bare wire. This has been occurring for quite some time and apparently is fairly common in this model.

- Warner Robins, GA, USA

problem #32

Mar 302010


  • 190,000 miles
Insulation on wiring harness breaking and falling off.

- Independence, MO, USA

problem #31

Oct 122009


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. While driving approximately 60 mph the entire instrument panel and radio failed, and then the engine stalled. The driver was able to jump start the engine. The vehicle was taken to an independent repair facility, and the mechanic concluded that the wiring harness failed. His vehicle identification number was excluded from recall# 01V230000 (electrical system). No repairs were made, and the vehicle was inoperable. The failure and current mileages were 82,000. The vehicle identification number was unavailable.

- Meridian , MS, USA

problem #30

Apr 292009


  • 62,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. The contact stated that the wiring harness and the wiring around the heating unit sensors have deteriorated. The coding has cracked off the other wires, causing them to be exposed. This allows all of the wires to touch each other, which could cause a short in the vehicle. As a result, the engine temperature gauge does not work. The vehicle is still operable, but the coolant temperature becomes extremely high. In addition, the vehicle stalls while traveling at low speeds, such as 15 mph. The dealer stated that the VIN was excluded from NHTSA campaign id number 01V230000. The contact feels that the vehicle should be included in the recall since the failures were identical. The current and failure mileages were 62,000.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #29

Sep 182008


  • miles
I have a 1998 Ford Contour LX with only approx. 53,000 miles on it. I am on the 4th (fourth) alternator replacement: August 2004, October 2005, August 2006 and now, September 2008. There is definitely a problem with this car. I would like to know if there has been a recall on this year and model of Ford vehicle.

- Dulles, VA, USA

problem #28

Jul 012002


  • 60,000 miles
1. all engine wire harness insulation is cracking and falling off. Bare wire at most of the engine compartment connectors. Unknown damage under wire wrapping. Existing Ford recall cover 95-97 year models. Subject vehicle is a 98 model year. 2. still waiting for the first major meltdown. Connector wires are physically pulled apart to prevent electrical shortage. 3. no repair work has been done.

- Bothell, WA, USA

problem #27

Nov 192007


  • miles
I am the owner of a 1998 Ford Contour. I bought it used, and within a 1 year remainder of a 3 year warranty. I was never officially notified of several defects and NHTSA recalls that are still in effect for this car model year. One of the repairs for the blower resistor was performed twice, however it was never done to my satisfaction and it did not meet the standards of quality as expected for the recall. There are several safety issues with this car, and I am now afraid to keep driving it after what I have read. The Ford Motor Company is very negligent in following up with consumers on these issues, and they keep an outdated database of former owners which they fail to update with the current owners in cases where the car ownership has changed hands. I am kind of close to hiring a lawyer to sue them over these recall issues. What should I do" are they still obligated to fix the recall issues at their expense" I am certainly not about to put one dime of my own money into that car to fix issues covered by recalls. Again, I do not wish to fight or Wrangler with a company that is so awful who puts out a terrible and cheap product like the Ford Contour, then won't stand behind their car. However, if there are formal responsibilities which they are legally bound to, I will reserve my right to pursue this under the fullest extent of the law. Please advise. Sincerely, Mr. Mcdonough

- Richmond, VA, USA

problem #26

Jun 182007

Contour 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Ford Contour. Open electrical circuits and melted housing materials were found under the hood of the vehicle. The contact notified Ford who stated that her VIN was not included in recall # 01V230000 (electrical system). Ford stated that nothing could be done. The dealer stated that the repair was never previously performed. The current and failure mileages were 115,000.

- Rochester, IN, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »