Transmission problems are common in this model, often as a result of a failed front pump. The pump loses its ability to create hydraulic pressure, which an automatic transmission needs to function. A sign of front pump failure can be a whine type noise.
Transmission Problems Common Due to Front Pump Failure on Ford Contour
Average mileage: 92,926 (10,000–138,000)
17 people reported this problem
1998 Ford Contour 130,000 mi, Visitor
wont shift into drive at the drive position it seems as though it wants to go only in low but doesnt want to shift into drive unless a low speed is achieved and then can shift manually
1999 Ford Contour 124,915 mi, Visitor
it has to rev high before it will shift between any gear and it has problem even moving it has delay between when you use the pedal and when it starts moving
1998 Ford Contour 132,810 mi, Visitor
Transmissions failure first smelled gas change pump then slipping and thing started now won't move at all
1995 Ford Contour 138,000 mi, Visitor
transmission quit working 2 blocks from my house. Step on accelerator nothing happens.
1998 Ford Contour 87,658 mi, Visitor
Driving down the freeway at 65 mph, I began smelling transmission fluid. I assume as it dripped on my exhaust while being blown under my car from ?. A huge "white, thick cloud" of what I assumed was trans fluid burning off the exhaust, was trailing me & slowing traffic quickly behind me. I pulled off fwy, checked the fluid (down 1 qt at this time). Replaced the fluid, let the car cool for an hour or two(temp was higher than it usually runs). I drove it home (approx. 40miles) with it smoking twice when accelerating up a small incline or pulling onto the freeway. The next day it did not shift well and took it to AAMCO down the road from us. Why a warning light for the transmission is not installed on vehicles is beyond my understanding. Before this happened it was a strong running vehicle. $2600 later (that I still owe to my mother)I was back on the road. Until now...I was not sure where the white smoke had come from...exhaust pipes or undercarriage. 8 mos later, my car is having troubles again. Feels as if it lost compression, however, 2 of 4 plugs were caked with carbon. Working on major tune up now...will let you know! Is there a recall from Ford on this transmission pump problem? There should be!
transmission hasnt failed yet, but does back up slow. course i think i caused it by getting stuck in a snowed over drive. but it does have high hum but only seems to when its really cold out so far and only when im not accelerating.
2000 Ford Contour 50,000 mi, Visitor
Whining noise when we first bought it and
Started slipping when the engine was cold. Kinda was making a whinning noise but i thought it was the belt. Then just up the street it just stop driving. It would start and run just fine but no movement. Now the shifter will only go in neutral threw low 1. It will not go in reverse or park and the key will not come out ignition. Not much of a wrencher. I've never torn down a transmission. I've put a clutch in a truck and changed timing belts and motor mounts by reading the book but a transmission seems kind of complex.