NHTSA — Vehicle Speed Control Problems

2002 Mercury Sable (Page 2 of 3)


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
82,257 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.

2002 Mercury Sable engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Mercury Sable Owner Comments (Page 2 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Jun 162011

Sable 6-cyl

  • 145,000 miles


While driving at 35 mph, gas pedal was stuck down to floor, RPM and speedometer controls were at the maximum and the engine revved up. Vehicle started to accelerate so I depressed brake pedal slowing the vehicle down enough to shift it into park and shut the vehicle off. A passerby stopped by and taped the cruise control cable back together.

- Midland, MI, USA

problem #25

Sep 072012

Sable 6-cyl

  • 131,000 miles
The contact owns 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that while driving 40 mph the vehicle suddenly accelerated. The contact mentioned that he was able to merge to the shoulder of the road, shifted into neutral in order to stop the vehicle. Once the vehicle was turned back on the failure recurred. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic who stated that the vehicle speed control cable snapped and threw the vehicle into a full throttle. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 131,000...updated 11/14/12 updated 11/19/2012

- Mt. Laurel, NJ, USA

problem #24

Aug 062012


  • 131,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that while driving 25 mph there was an increase on engine rpms and the vehicle suddenly accelerated. The contact mentioned the brakes failed to stop the vehicle. However, once the vehicle was shifted into neutral and then park he was able to turn the engine off. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who diagnose that the cruise control cable failed. The contact had the cable disconnected. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 131,000 and the current mileage was 132,000.

- Farfield, CT, USA

problem #23

Aug 052012


  • 50,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that the vehicle would sporadically accelerate independently. The contact was able to apply the brakes to stop the vehicle from accelerating further. The vehicle had not been inspected. The failure and the current mileage was 50,000.

- Boynton Beach, FL, USA

problem #22

Jun 122012


  • 86,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that while driving 25 mph with the cruise control activated, the vehicle began to accelerate abnormally. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for diagnosis where the contact was informed that the cruise control cable was broke and caused the vehicle to accelerate. The contact requested the cruise control be disconnected. The manufacturer was notified and stated that the case was under investigation. The failure and the current mileages were 86,000.

- Titusville, FL, USA

problem #21

Jul 082012


  • 144,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that the vehicle abnormally accelerated while driving 40 mph. The accelerator was released, the brake was depressed and the vehicle continued to accelerate. The gear was placed in the neutral and the contact was able to coast the vehicle onto the shoulder as the rpms increased to 4,000. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer nor repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 144,000.

- Lebanon , NJ, USA

problem #20

Jul 012012

Sable 6-cyl

  • 86,668 miles


My daughter had just merged onto the highway going approximately 65mph. Initially it felt difficult to get the car up to speed. She noticed she was edging up on the vehicle in front of her and took her foot off the accelerator to slow down but instead the car sped up. She applied the brakes which did not slow the car down. She applied pressure to the accelerator in an attempt to "unstick" it which had no effect on the speed of the car. She then attempted to apply the brakes further at which time the brakes began smoking. The car had reached 90mph at this point and was shaking. While continuing to keep her foot on the brakes, she was able to pull into the breakdown lane and put the car into neutral but the vehicle only slowed down minimally at which time she put the car into park. The vehicle then stopped but she kept her foot on the brake because the engine continued to rev between 3,000 - 4,000 rpms and she could feel resistance as if the car wanted to continue to move forward despite being in park. At that time she shut off the engine and called for assistance. When my husband and I arrived on scene my husband verified that the accelerator was not stuck on anything, such as a floor mat. Once he saw that the accelerator appeared to be in a normal position he started the vehicle and immediately the engine was reving with rpms again between 3,000 - 4,000. The engine was again shut off and the vehicle was towed to the local Ford dealership.

- Holyoke, MA, USA

problem #19

May 132012

Sable 6-cyl

  • 106,586 miles
We were backing out of a parking space & the car accelerated as though I had pressed the gas pedal. This is the third time this has happened, but the first time going in reverse. Both other times the car was in drive. The first time I was on the freeway and I assumed my foot had accidentally pushed the gas, so I ignored it. The second time I was on a county road, and again I assumed it was my fault. This is the first time I could have really hurt someone, and this could potentially be very dangerous.

- Finlayson, MN, USA

problem #18

May 082012

Sable 6-cyl

  • 87,510 miles
The cruise control gas cable broke off the holder by the throttle valve, resulting in jamming the throttle valve in open position, the car became out of control as the brakes are not able to slow down the car, only turning off the ignition helped slowing down the car so no brake booster. One very dangerous situation. The design and material are of substandard. I have it documented with pictures.

- Bakersfield, CA, USA

problem #17

Oct 012011


  • 81,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that he heard a banging noise while driving 50 mph and the vehicle suddenly accelerated. The contact shifted into neutral and shut off the engine. The vehicle was then towed to an independent mechanic where the contact was informed that the cruise control cable was damaged and caused the failure. The mechanic disconnected the cruise control cable. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and offered no assistance. The failure mileage was 81,000.

- Quincy, MA, USA

problem #16

Apr 052012


  • 88,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. While driving 35 mph, the contact noticed that the vehicle had suddenly began to accelerate without warning. In order to stop the vehicle, the contact had to shift into neutral and then shut the vehicle off. The failure had not been diagnosed and had not been repaired. The failure and current mileages were 88,000.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #15

Dec 142010

Sable 6-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
When cruise control is on and active and gas pedal manually depressed ( to pass car) throttle will stick open. Ball on throttle plate comes out of saddle on cruise control cable. When foot taken off gas ball on throttle plate does not return to original saddle position at end of cruise control cable. Ball on throttle plate gets stuck on edge of entrance to cable saddle. Throttle sticks partway open with amount open depending on cruise control cable position / amount of throttle commanded by cruise control. I fixed by placing a piece of 1/2" O.D. tube over cable (slit along length and then over cable, cable tie in position). This is enough to keep ball on throttle from coming out of saddle on cruise cable. Basically snap lock in saddle is wearing out after repeatedly pressing on gas while cruise control is on and active. No more problems for 20,000 miles.

- Traverse City, MI, USA

problem #14

Aug 312011

Sable 6-cyl

  • 86,448 miles
Cruise control cable broke or came loose causing throttle return spring to fall off. I could not stop car no matter how hard I pushed the brake pedal. The engine ran at full speed. The cruise control was not on. I was able to quickly put car in neutral and turn off the engine. I started the engine again and it revved up to full speed immediately. It was very difficult to move the car off the main road without starting the engine. We were fortunate there were no cars in front of us when this happened. We were about 50 yards from having to make a sharp left turn to go onto the main highway and traffic. We never would have been able to make the turn without crashing or the car turning over. My wife and I had just picked up two of our dogs at the vet and were returning home. The car was towed to the nearest Ford garage in the next town. I believe Ford has a bigger problem than they are admitting. The Mercury's should be included in their problem.

- Weirton, WV, USA

problem #13

Jan 012008


  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. The contact stated that the vehicle was equipped with adjustable pedals that would intermittently become stuck. The vehicle was not taken to have the failure diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 60,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Lenox, MA, USA

problem #12

Apr 232009


  • 38,500 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. While at a stop light, the vehicle began moving forward while the contact's foot was depressing the brake pedal. The vehicle began to accelerate and was taken to the dealer, but they could not find any failures. The vehicle has been to the dealer approximately three times for the same failure. The contact believes that the brakes may not be the cause of the failure. The vehicle will be taken to the dealer on June 4, 2009 for another diagnosis. The failure mileage was 38,500 and current mileage was 39,000. Updated 07/24/09.

- Petaluma, CA, USA

problem #11

Mar 092007

Sable 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
We have a 2002 Mercury Sable ls premier model. This "failure" has happened several times now, but neither of us communicated to the other about it until today. It is an intermittent surge of the car when braking. The latest time was today, and it happened to my wife. It happened to me also several weeks ago as well. I stepped on the brakes and instead of stopping, the car seemed to go faster and not want to stop. Extreme force was needed to stop the car. Then it was fine.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #10

Dec 012006

Sable 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles
- the contact owns a 2002 Mercury Sable. While driving 15 mph and due to heavy traffic the cruise control cable jumped out of its socket and the vehicle started to accelerate. The contact applied the brakes, but the vehicle did not respond. The driver had to turn the vehicle's power off completely to stop it from accelerating. The contact scheduled an appointment with a repair facility. The failure mileage was 100,000. The consumer stated he experienced unwanted acceleration. Updated 02.27.07.

- Wellington, FL, USA

problem #9

May 082005

Sable 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,000 miles
I put my foot on the brake, and the car accelerated and I was unable to stop causing an accident. This has also happened on several other occassions causing near miss accidents.

- Northville, MI, USA

problem #8

Mar 052004

(reported on)


  • 7,000 miles
While driving vehicle suddenly veered into traffic. Driver had to press hard on the brakes to stop the vehicle. Dealer had been contacted.

- Newtown Square, PA, USA

problem #7

Jan 192004


  • 18,029 miles
While driving brakes proceeded to the floor and the vehicle surged forward. As a result, driver had to put the vehicle into neutral. Dealer stated theat battery voltage was low.

- Bedminster, NJ, USA

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