for HEAPS of info on the contour. Look in the common problems/FAQ section, or go to the boards and post a question. I'd be staggered if you didnt get the answer you need.
Occasionally there is a problem with the water pump on the V6 models, that commonly you notice when the heater plays up. It usually means the car's overheating, but because of the the way the temperature sensor is loacted, you dont know until the engine seizes.
Is your mate's a 4 or V6?