1997 Ford Escort CX 1.6 petrol


A no frills, fairly economical and reliable runabout, if slightly underpowered


The airbag warning light begins to flash when-ever the seats are moved.

The "intelligent" key occasionally fails to register with the ignition, activating the immobilizer and security locking the radio.

The outside edges of the rear tires wear quite badly.

General Comments:

I bought this car as a "shopping trolley", but have been pleasantly surprised by the way it has responded to the rigors of two hour daily return commute.

The interior is wearing well, and shows few signs of having travelled 180,000 kilometers.

The electrics play up from time to time, but being the entry level specification model there aren't that many electric accessories to play up.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th April, 2004

23rd May 2005, 13:25

I have the same problem with the air bag light is this a mot failure?

8th Oct 2005, 15:20

The fault would be a WoF (NZ Warrant of fitness) failure, however it is an intermittent fault, caused by slightly 'crusty' connectors under the seat. So far, disconnecting, cleaning and reconnecting has resulted in the light staying off. And - the Escort now has 220,000 on the clock, and is due for replacement. running costs still good, although the front struts have worn, resulting in huge negative camber and excessive tyre wear.

1998 Ford Escort GLX 1.6 Zetec


Very good buy, cheap when new, and cheap to run


Nothing of note. The battery failed at 2 years, replaced under warranty, rear muffler replaced after 4 years, otherwise just tyres have been replaced at 40000km.

General Comments:

My car is an estate, has a lot of room for its class. It's not the fastest 4 cylinder car around, but is very comfortable on long trips at between 100km/h and 120km/h. It is also economical, doing 7 litres per 100km. It is cheap to service, each 15,000km, and has absolutely no rust after 5 years- it is garaged so I guess that helps.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd May, 2003

1980 Ford Escort RS2000 2.0L Pinto SOHC


A real classic little beast that gives the big cars a run for their money


After 22 years the original exhaust rusted through (what do you expect?!).

The gear stick loosens and pops out occasionally.

Rust has formed in wheel arches and some in boot, not a major problem.

General Comments:

This was my first car, and in a society dominated by big 6 cylinder and V8's, this is still comparatively quick for its age.

The RS2000 came with a Weber carburettor and Genie 2" extractors as standard. I recently replaced from the extractors backward with a 2.25" system and it goes even quicker.

Very economical when driven tamely, and still quite cheap even when thrashed.

Reaches 100kph quickly for its age, and sounds great when wound up to 6000rpm through each gear.

Excellent handling in any conditions, the last of the rear wheelers (real cars).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th January, 2003

19th Jan 2003, 21:07

G'day I'm thinking of purchasing a 1980 RS2000 escort because they are great old style looking cars and I have heard they go pretty strong as well. Could you please tell me the fuel efficiency of the car and the performance it has, for example how many horsepower at engine or wheels, and approx how long it takes to get from 0 - 100, thanks champ.


1975 Ford Escort rs2000 2.0


Handles great


This car is incredibly unreliable. So many things have gone wrong with it. first of all the clutch went, and then starter motor, then the heater, then the head gasket!!!

General Comments:

I thought these were suppose to be reliable, but now I can see why ford have such a bad name!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 10th December, 2002

5th Sep 2003, 00:58

In response to your negative comments on your older ford escort I must tell you I own a 75 escort and have no problems and it drives like a dream. I suspect the condition of the car you purchased was not up to par when purchased. These cars are simple and easy to fix if there is a problem unlike modern cars, (computers). My escort is much older than the one you described and I have had no, NOT ONE, problem with it.

Brandon in Sweden.

5th Sep 2003, 01:27

Mate, what the hell are you whinging about? Your Escort is no spring chicken at nearly 30 years of age and of course components will start to fail, but no more than a contemporary car from the same era. Take into consideration too that the RS2000 was the factory hotted-up version of the standard Escort and as such will most likely have been subjected to hard usage before you bought it. Besides, had you done your homework prior to purchase re: British cars? Anyone who has done their homework WILL know that British cars from that era were known for having lesser standards of reliability and quality control, considering that the UK at the time was in severe economic trouble.

Maybe you should have stuck with your Toyota Starlet if you wanted a car with good reliability and no idiosyncrasies.

7th Mar 2006, 02:44

Actually, the Australian specification Ford Escort RS2000 used the Kent 2 litre engine, which is nothing like what the European spec RS2000 has. As a consequence, the Aust spec car had 70 kilowatts of power, with 148 Newton metres of torque.