Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

NHTSA — Electrical System: Alternator/Generator/Regulator Problems


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,714 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2000 Mercury Cougar electrical problems

electrical problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2000 Mercury Cougar:

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

2000 Mercury Cougar Owner Comments

problem #20

Nov 022007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 129,900 miles


Engine light came on, them battery light. A new battery was installed but after a few days the battery and engine light came on again. Alternator was checked and found to be in perfect order. Eventually one day all the panel lights just went dim and the car shut off totally. Car was towed to dealer where I was told that I needed an alternator at the cost of $550. I agreed. Got the car drove it from the dealer the engine lights and battery lights came back on that very same day. Called the dealership and was told that it takes time for the electrical system to adjust. I drove it for one week and the car shut off again. I had it towed again. Dealer said it was fixed and that I should not have any problems with it. It's has happened over and over again since them. I don't know what else to do.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #19

Nov 012004

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles
Went out to go to work one morning and car would not start, all systems completely dead, jumped car off next day and barely made it to garage, replaced battery 11/04, problems ever since with battery light constantly flashing as well as all interior and exterior lights flashing bright to dim day or night, was told 11/04 needed a new alternator, still have not gotten a new alternator and do not plan to at this point, received the recall on battery cable and rerouting and had that done, if this is a consistent problem with V-6 2000 Mercury Cougar the company should take care of this problem immediately, if driving at night and car completely stalls, all lights and controls are inoperable which will cause accident to self and/or others, this is a scary thought for a single female driving at night and in areas where cell phone doesn't always have a signal, Ford should fix this battery/alternator problem asap before someone gets hurt and sues.

- Penhook, VA, USA

problem #18

Nov 302005

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 59,875 miles
Mercury Cougar 2000 started to give me problems within the last week: Lights flickering, loss of power, stalling. Currently in a garage getting a new alternator installed. Not under warranty. I fortunately found on the web that there is a recall for an electrical problem, but don't believe this will resolve the issue as it hasn't for anyone else. I read countless reports of this same problem on the web.

- Lewiston, ME, USA

problem #17

Nov 292004

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Vehicle interior and headlights constantly brighten and dim when brake or gas pedal is applied. Brought it in to dealer on 11/26/04, alternator was replaced (100 dollars spent). Alternator had previously been replaced due to complete failure on christmas eve 2001. Now on third alternator. On Monday November 29, car began exhibited the same brightening and dimming effects. Brought to dealer and was informed that the wire between the battery and alternator could potentially have a problem. Dealer was nice enough to fix it for free. I have contacted Mercury corporate several times and asked to speak with someone who can actualy help me and and always told that I can't speak to anyone else. There are so many more things that have gone wrong with this car I dont even know where to begin.

- Orland Park, IL, USA

problem #16

Sep 042004

Cougar 6-cyl

  • 36,000 miles
The lights on my dashboard kept diming when ever I had hit the gas. Did inform L/M of problem and had made an appointment for them to look at it. They informed me there was no problem. That this does happen on some Cougar but not to worry about it. I bought it in again for something and mention the diming again and they said the same thing to me. On the way home from work one day my car started to loss power and by the time I got home I didn't have any power. I called L/M and told them of the problem. I was told to bring my car in.they inform me it was my alternator. I had 3/36 warr on it & I had not even 37,000 on it and L/M told me it wasn't cover under warr and wanted to charge me over $1000. That was on 12/19/2002...on 9/4/2004 I was driving and car went out on me and I bought it to Firestone and they my battery was so dead and they couldn't even finish the testing after putting in a new battery they told me it was my alterntor.this is the 3rd one since I purchase my car. I was told that the diming which is still happening wasn't a problem and now I am on my 3 rd altertner. Even I know there is problem. This shouln't been happening on a car less then 5 yrs old and it 3rd alternator.

- Glen Ellyn, IL, USA

problem #15

Jul 122004

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,000 miles
I have a 2000 Mercury Cougar that I bought brand new and has been service faithfully by a dealership. But recently in the past 2 months there have been 3 alternators put on my car all resulting from the same problem. The console lights flicker and dim, the headlights flicker and dim, the battery light flashes and eventually it stays lighted and the gauges zero out and the car shuts down starting with the radio and eventually the light goes out and the car dies. This has happened 3 times to me within the past month all while driving in lot's of traffic. The last time I was able to pull over to a parking lot. I've seen that there are many other Cougar owners with the same year as mine that are continuously having the same problem over and over. Why? a brand new car should not be doing this and to completely break down in rush hour traffic is definitely horrifying. The dealership has just put the 4th alternator on and says they had to rewire a harness but didn't say to what or for what. It's costing me $700 and how am I to believe that it won't break down again with the same problem. How come Ford doesn't issue a recall for the alternator/battery/wiring problem. A brand new car is not supposed to break down before it's paid for. I'm definitely not buying another Mercury product again.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #14

Jul 102004

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,100 miles


With little or no warning, my car's electrical system will start failing. Lights will dim, RPM and speed gages reset and the car stalls. The vehicle will not start again and has to be towed to the shop. Vehicle has left me stranded 3 times because of this. The failure is in the alternator to the car and possibly the battery as well which has only ever been the original Ford batteries. I have had to have my battery replaced 3 times and my alternator 3 times. This has all occurred within the last 2 1/2 years. After reading information from other Mercury Cougar owners on the website, it is obvious that there is a substantial problem with this car's alternator and should be addressed by the Ford Motor Company.

- Riverview, FL, USA

problem #13

Apr 182003

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,900 miles
Power windows didn't work as fast, and eventually the car wouldn't start. The same thing happened not two months later. It took eight days to fix the alternator, which had been repaired by that same dealer before and only took 2 days. The day I got it out of the shop the sunroof broke. And then on March 29, on my way to work in the morning, as I was exiting the ramp onto the highway the rpms shot way up and the car "lurched " a few times before finally dying. I pulled over to the side of the road and called a wrecker. Once at the repair shop it was diagnosed as being low in gas, causing the fuel pump to overheat. They also found that the bolt holding the motor to the motorcarriage was missing, but I haven't heard back from them on why. The car presently only has 44,376 miles on it, and one complaint has already been filed with Ford.

- West Portsmouth, OH, USA

problem #12

Jun 152003


  • miles
Hi. I am from Canada and hope that everyone that reads this never buys one of this pieces of junk Cougar that Ford is selling.the name speaks for it self fix or repair daily - drivers window assemby broke $100 to fix - feul pump at 56,000 km $500- window stress cracked at 60,000 km not fixed yet- transmission replaced at 70,000 km $2500 - two ball joints and alternator replaced at 72,000 km $400- rearhatch will not open from inside not fixed yet- lights flicker on dash alternator again at 85,000km but did not help so put in new battery but didn, T help no sense of phoning Ford they don, T give a damn $18,500 for this junk and by time it is paid off $24,000 plus all the repairs best place for all the Ford junk is form the plant to the scrap yard so nobody has to put up with all these problems after reading all this you still go out an buy a Ford as the saying goes there is a sucker born every day.

- Brockville, IL, USA

problem #11

Aug 302003

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 60,000 miles
Alternator in my 2000 Mercury Cougar failed for the third time. The car is now out of warranty and I am stuck with the bill. Failure was followed by smoking in the engine compartment which steadily increased, small fire evolved soon afterward. Was able to put it out with a bottle of coke (a brand that has never let me down). I was assured by the dealership that this issue was taken care of some time ago. I have hated this car for all of its problems and have successfully steered people away from Ford products. I will never purchase another domestic vehicle for as long as I live.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #10

Aug 202003

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Vehicle shut off after being driven for half hour, and failed to start. The dealer replaced battery/alternator/ ignition switch, and relay, but the problem continued. After all repairs were made, problems continued to exist.. also the ball joint was replaced, the trunk release did not work.

- Brockton, MA, USA

problem #9

Jul 132003

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 54,500 miles
This is the 2nd time that I am replacing an alternator on my 2000 Mercury Cougar. This time, it's been less than a year since I replaced the old one. This seems to be an ongoing problem with the 2000 Cougar, and Mercury/Ford have no intentions on recalling the vehicle for this problem. It's extremely frustrating that the alternator keeps going on this vehicle. Of course it keeps happening after the warranty is up, causing you to have to shell out hundreds of dollars over and over again. This last time, not only did I have to replace the alternator, but I had to pay $175 for towing because I was 75 miles away from home. This is ridiculous, and I am considering getting rid of this car once it is paid off next year. And since there are other people who are having the same problem, and Mercury/Ford does not want to recall this vehicle, I will never purchase a car from this company again. Clearly there is something causing the alternator on the 2000 Mercury Cougar to keep going, but the maker will not recall the vehicle.

- Newark, NJ, USA

problem #8

Feb 042003

Cougar 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles
Vehicle had loss of power and lights were flickering. Wiring harness, alternator and voltage regulator need replaced.vehicle has 47000 miles on it. Dealer said it was 4th Cougar with exact same problem but yet no recall. Cost of repair is at least $800.

- Ridgeley, WV, USA

problem #7

Nov 142002


  • miles
Same as previously recorded issue, however, this time the replaced part (alternator) fails after one day of operation. Vehicle broke down again, while approaching traffic light. All lights went out, gauges were not responding, radio shut off etc. Again, possible failure reported in warranty period, however, dealer and manufacturer refuse to repair. 11/12/2002 repair appears to have not been working. Will never buy fomoco product again. Contemplating contacting attorney and resolve situation with fomoco.

- Scotch Plains, NJ, USA

problem #6

Nov 122001


  • miles
Prior to faillure, dealership and manufacturer were contacted regarding the flashing battery light. Lights would dim during accelerations or reving of engine. Prior to final warrenty check (@ 35.800 miles), notified dealership that alternator probably needed replacement. This was denied by dealership. Now, 1500 miles later, and out of warranty, alternator fails causing vehicle to stall in the middle of the road. Safety issue, since many more fomoco vehicles (Cougar, Contour) have been experiencing this same problem. However fomoco refuses to issue recall total repair cost $700.

- Scotch Plains, NJ, USA

problem #5

Nov 132002

(reported on)


  • miles
Consumer called complaining about having problems with the alternator blowing out while driving the has been contacted and has fix the problem with the vehicle.

- Scotchplains, NJ, USA

problem #4

Nov 121999


  • miles
The vehicle has been taken in several times for these ongoing problems. The problems have occurred since the first week of having the vehicle. Arbitration papers were filed but request was denied due to dealership not registering problems as well as indicating a part capable of fixing the problem, however the part did not. Vehicle was taken to a new dealership who registered the compliants. Dealership replaced the ignition switch but problems still remain. Dealership told owners it was an electrical problem that would be to complicated to find. The vehicle is a lease and is used for traveling back and forth for a college student on highways where the vehicle has failed several times.

- Mooresville, IN, USA

problem #3

Feb 082001


  • miles
Lights flickering, loss of electrical power, alternator needs replacement part, emission system malfunction, malfunctioning ignition. Received poor service from dealer.

- Boston, MA, USA

problem #2

Sep 122000


  • miles
The first incident with the Mercury Cougar was on the date listed. Nom safety defect listed in summary.

- Middlesboro, KY, USA

problem #1

Oct 072000


  • miles
Lights flicker, then loses electrical power. Alternator, 2 batteries, wiper motor, sensor, windshield (stress crack from bottom) replaced. Requested on several occasions from bob site Lincoln Mercury service department that the Mercury factory zone manager be contacted, and to have the zone manager contact me. Each request was denied. I contacted Mercury customer assistance and was told that only the dealership could contact the factory zone managers.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

Not what you are looking for?