Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe Contour is an SVT, and that makes it a Special Vehicle indeed. The question is: will the price on this seemingly well-kept and customized Ford make it even more special?
I am shocked—shocked I tell you—at the 64% Crack Pipe loss suffered by yesterday’s 1986 Toyota Custom Cab pickup truck. Yes, its nine-grand price would buy a lot of Netflix and chill, but that extended cab truck was in excellent shape and had all the kit we like too. Oh well, maybe it just wasn’t special enough.
SVO, SHO, SVT… Ford sure likes their S-based three-letter acronyms. The earliest of them, SVO, stood for Special Vehicles Operation and was applied to the Foxstang. That car was Ford’s attempt at building a car that could be considered in the same league as the BMW 3-series in terms of handling and driving feel. They came damn close too. The SHO was of course the most awesomest Taurus ever made, with its nest of snakes Yamaha-designed DOHC V6 imbuing the car with Super High Output.
SVT stands for Special Vehicle Team, which has seemingly evolved over the years from just being an operation. Ford has applied the SVT badge to numerous models including the Lightning pickup, Focus subcompact, Mustang Cobra, and the subject of our attention today, the SVT Contour.
The Contour was designed in Europe but was built in America—at Ford’s Claycomo Missouri plant no less. It was a big car by euro-standards, but proved too tight, especially in rear seat ingress/egress, to be considered a class leader here in the U.S..
This 1999 Contour SVT might make you not care about squeezing your fat-ass friends through the ridiculously small back doors as it’s rocking a three-litre Duratec under its blacked out hood rather than the stock 200-horse 2.5.
The ad says that engine has been ‘port-matched’ and that its sound benefits from the removal of the resonator and the addition of a pair of Mustang GT mufflers. A five-speed transaxle puts the power to the pavement.
There’s some suspension work to help with that power application. The car has been lowered on its factory five-spoke alloys and there is a reinforced sub frame in the back, poly bushings all around, Eibach rear and Intrax front springs, and boxed LCAs along with custom sway bar links to keep things in line.
Aesthetic additions include eyebrows over the headlamps, an aftermarket splitter, matte black hood, and some sort of mesh inserts, which I think are a kind of underwear.
Overall, it comes together quite nicely, something you typically can’t say about Contours as people don’t generally maintain them the way this owner has. There’s 164K on the car, and something over 100K on the 3.0. The ad notes that the car ‘runs and drives great,’ as ads invariably always do, and that it’s been a stalwart daily driver for three years running.
The ad also notes some small imperfections in the Tropic Green paint, and on the inside there’s some expected cracking in the leather seats. Other than that, and the general ‘90s-ness of the interior styling, it’s all perfectly serviceable and without any glaringly obvious red flags. There is a green billiard ball shift knob, however.
As I noted, it’s a rare opportunity to get to appreciate a Contour SVT in such shape, and especially one with a 3-litre. As such, it perhaps might be deemed worthy of its nominal $3,250 asking price. Of course, that’s up to you to decide, so…
H/T to 8000rpm for the hookup!
Help me out with NPOCP. Click here to send a me a fixed-price tip, and remember to include your Kinja handle.