1989 Ford Escort LX 1.6 from UK and Ireland


Ongoing oil leak, but otherwise reliable and performed adequately


Suffered from breather tube problems since 108,000 miles.

Poor compression from 108,000 miles.

Oil leaked from 108,000 miles and required 1 gallon every 4,000 miles. Caused fire at 125,000 miles as oil dripped onto exhaust manifold!

Engine finally died at 140,000 miles.

General Comments:

The car had one ongoing problem from purchase, being that of oil leakage, which could never seem to be fixed by any of the mechanics who looked at it. I ran out of oil the first time I drove on the motorway and managed to limp to a service station for a refill.

The leak eventually caused a small fire as oil was being sucked up though the air cleaner and dripped on to the exhaust manifold.

In the end I had to disconnect a breather tube and let the oil drip safely to the ground. This meant repeated oil replacement.

In the end, the engine couldn't take any more and gave up. Subsequent to this it was only fit for very short (and slow) trips until I replaced the car pronto.

Apart from this, the car performed well and there weren't any other problems of significance.

Reliability was good (always started), but as with other Escorts of this era, began to corrode around the rear wheel arches.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th October, 2004

1989 Ford Escort Pony 1.9 from North America


Good engined car with a crappy body


Most recently the body has rusted so badly that the rear left shock has went up through the wheel well making it rub when I go around left curves or corners.

The ball joints are weak.

The drive-side seatbelt doesn't work anymore.

The speedometer doesn't work.

The odometer doesn't work.

Left headlight is dimmer than the right.

Hatch doesn't lock anymore and the hatch doesn't stay up by itself.

Floor boards are rusted through.

Heat doesn't work anymore.

General Comments:

This car is sort of underpowered, but on the highway its still speedy. The manual transmission is definitely better for acceleration in this car.

Engine is in perfect running order even after all these miles. It doesn't use oil or leak anything and is still running strong.

I'm very pleased with the performance of this engine and transmission, but disappointed with the state of the body.

If I could find another Escort body and put this engine and tranny in it, it would be a good way to keep driving this car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th September, 2004

21st Jan 2006, 17:33

I have a cute little escort pony, but the engine is shot. Looks like I am on the other side of this seeing as how the body and interior are in great condition for being an 89 model, but it is just sitting in my driveway.

1989 Ford Escort L 1.3 HCS from UK and Ireland


Fun, but too many flaws with age


Had a few months when it would blow fuses to the radiator fan meaning that it would over heat on a hot day in traffic which is not needed on the way to work.

Other than that the rear light mountings rusted into dust needing replacing and with ford not caring really I got two new ones from the scrap yard for £3 each.

Lots of new wiring as well after the radio decided to blow up.

Rear wheel bearings also gone making the rear end unpredictable and finally many faults with battery going flat during the night.

Finally got to an MOT and it failed terribly on the steering rack, headlights being all over the place as well as a rusted holey floor giving it little future than the scrap yard.

General Comments:

Not a lot of pleasant ones. The car was uncomfortable for long trips as well as noisy and with terrible motorway manners.

Most of the noise was road noise, but the parcel shelf would bounce along with the road making the most annoying squeak in the history of man kind.

In defense of the car the engine was quite fast for a 1.3 and it handled OK giving some fun moments on twisty b-roads.

Just a flawed example of an OK car, just don't get one in this day and age cause they are for the most part rusted and MOT bait.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 18th June, 2004