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You probably need a new starter. It sounds like the bendix part isn’t engaging with the flywheel. Look at the flywheel teeth if you are changing the starter just to make sure no teeth are missing.
 

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There is an old trick you can try. It will take two people. You have to make sure you got room under the car and it won't move. One person tries to start the car while you hit the starter with a hammer. Sometimes that will cause the starter to engage. Also, check the cables at the starter. Make sure you have a good connection. I have seen corrosion inside the plastic coating on the starter cables.
 

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I second the new starter - starter is turning but the bendix/solenoid isn't extending the gear to mesh with the flywheel. Either than or the flywheel is missing several teeth all in the same place (which is unlikely)
 

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These guys are smarter than me; recently I had similar, on '87 4runner, got a battery, then a starter, improved a bit, but got way better when I disconnected all the wires at battery, etc. they were gray; shined up with small grit sandpaper, and wow, much better contact. Plan on the more expensive part but don't overlook something not apparent. Just my 2c. Good luck
 

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Two important points.
1. automatic and manual trans starters are different. The injection length of the bendix is different.
2. You didn’t say motor and trans pair, but it looks like an automatic based on the pedals. if you swapped in an AOD, the flex plate is 163 tooth vs. the stock 158, which can also cause a problem, but I never experienced a problem with that, but the documentation says it could be.

I think the bendix is stuck, and the hammer trick might tell the tail, but if this is the second new starter, I’d start looking at exactly what starter you have and get the correct one, meaning automatic or manual trans, and then maybe start counting flex plate teeth. My money is on the fact that you have a manual trans starter in an automatic trans car.

just my 2 cents and 45 years experience talking.
 

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Hi cougars mecanics! I need your input! Just don’t know why the car makes that sound but won’t start! I posted it on youtube:
- Clip when i turn the key, with sound!

Any input?
Have you done a check on your battery? I just replaced mine today thought the Optima read 12.65 volts. any load on it and it showed weak on the output.. I went to Batteries Plus and replaced the battery with another AGM type, an X2. It has a four year no pro rata warranty and 880 CCA. Costly, but dependablity is what you want especially if you have a lot of electrical upgrades or high compression engine. If not the batter, try replacing the solenoid. It is near the batter on the inner fender. Disconnect your battery to install or uninstall this. It does carry voltage.
 
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