2002 Mercury Cougar

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Key Specs

of the 2002 Mercury Cougar. Base trim shown.

2002 Mercury Cougar Overview

By Cars.com Editors
Vehicle Overview
A Convenience Group is now standard for Mercury’s sporty, front-drive coupe. Two new limited-production, special-edition models — the XR and C2 — also have gone on sale, each packed with a unique group of equipment. First seen at the Chicago Auto Show in February 2001, the C2 coupe features a bigger rear spoiler than usual, machined aluminum wheels and a blue interior theme. A high-performance Cougar S, which was announced for early-2001 sale, failed to emerge and will not be offered in the 2002 model year.

When introduced for 1999, the Cougar was the first car to display Ford’s “new-edge” styling (later used on the Ford Focus), which emphasizes sharp creases and crisp lines instead of the usual curves and rounded shapes. Face-lifted for 2001, the Cougar is based on the same design used by the now-departed Ford Contour and Mercury Mystique. Either a four-cylinder or V-6 engine may be installed.

Exterior
Distinctive Cougar styling nearly conceals the fact that this is a two-door hatchback and not a coupe with a separate trunk. Though the Cougar is not generally perceived as a midsize model, it has a relatively long wheelbase for a car of its type: 106.4 inches. Measuring 185 inches long overall, the coupe is 69.6 inches wide and stands 52.2 inches tall. Cougars with the V-6 engine get a tauter suspension, and alloy wheels hold 15-inch tires. Extras on the XR edition include a sport suspension, unique hood scoop, machined aluminum wh...
Vehicle Overview
A Convenience Group is now standard for Mercury’s sporty, front-drive coupe. Two new limited-production, special-edition models — the XR and C2 — also have gone on sale, each packed with a unique group of equipment. First seen at the Chicago Auto Show in February 2001, the C2 coupe features a bigger rear spoiler than usual, machined aluminum wheels and a blue interior theme. A high-performance Cougar S, which was announced for early-2001 sale, failed to emerge and will not be offered in the 2002 model year.

When introduced for 1999, the Cougar was the first car to display Ford’s “new-edge” styling (later used on the Ford Focus), which emphasizes sharp creases and crisp lines instead of the usual curves and rounded shapes. Face-lifted for 2001, the Cougar is based on the same design used by the now-departed Ford Contour and Mercury Mystique. Either a four-cylinder or V-6 engine may be installed.

Exterior
Distinctive Cougar styling nearly conceals the fact that this is a two-door hatchback and not a coupe with a separate trunk. Though the Cougar is not generally perceived as a midsize model, it has a relatively long wheelbase for a car of its type: 106.4 inches. Measuring 185 inches long overall, the coupe is 69.6 inches wide and stands 52.2 inches tall. Cougars with the V-6 engine get a tauter suspension, and alloy wheels hold 15-inch tires. Extras on the XR edition include a sport suspension, unique hood scoop, machined aluminum wheels and 17-inch tires.

Interior
The Cougar’s four-passenger capacity consists of front bucket seats and a rear seat shaped for two. The 50/50-split rear seat folds down to yield additional cargo space. Owners can access seatback releases from the rear of the vehicle. Standard equipment includes air conditioning, cloth upholstery, a tilt steering wheel, heated power mirrors, power windows and locks, a CD player and remote keyless entry.

Sport models come in base, Premium and Ultimate versions, while the C2 and XR are models dressed up with option-group accessories.

Under the Hood
The base engine is a 125-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder, and an optional 170-hp, 2.5-liter V-6 is available. Both engines work with either a four-speed-automatic or five-speed-manual transmission. Antilock brakes and side-impact airbags are optional.

Driving Impressions
Not only does the Cougar look youthful and athletic, but it also performs on that level with its firm ride and commendable grip on the pavement. It’s far from the only sport coupe to deliver such traits, though most vehicles in this genre are ranked as compact cars by the cars.com yardstick.

Having a hatchback instead of a trunk gives the Cougar more cargo-carrying versatility than some other coupes on the market. A snug rear seat is part of the price paid for sport coupes of this nature.

 
Reported by Jim Flammang  for cars.com
From the cars.com 2002 Buying Guide

Latest 2002 Cougar Stories

What Drivers Are Saying

Exterior Styling
(4.2)
Performance
(4.1)
Interior Design
(4.1)
Comfort
(3.7)
Reliability
(3.9)
Value For The Money
(3.9)

Latest Reviews

(4.0)

Old but sturdy vehicle

by mercury_cougar_owner from Boone,IA on January 25, 2018

This car has met all of my needs. I used it for interstate traveling, as well as getting to/from work. The car has never failed me, and is surprisingly reliable. The car and engine may make more noise ... Read full review

(5.0)

Great Sports Car -- Fun to Drive

by Rod from Deerfield, MA on October 8, 2017

This is a great little sports car with great power to weight ratio. Will hang with Mustang GTs on the highway. Great styling, sporty, quick.... last year built and most of the trouble solved by this ... Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2002 Mercury Cougar currently has 3 recalls

Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

The 2002 Mercury Cougar has not been tested.

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Cougar received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker