1995 Ford Escort Mistral 1.6 16v 90BHP from UK and Ireland


Reasonably quick (especially if you're used to driving a 1.0/1.2/1.4 hatch!)


Windscreen cracked right down the middle, although my own fault (bad idea using warm water on a frozen windscreen). Cost £125 to replace by local callout service (Auto-glass quoted £250!!) as it was not covered by Third Party Fire & Theft Insurance.

Starter motor died @ 54,000 miles (odd, because I have an invoice from previous owner showing start motor replaced at 51,000). Am kinda half waiting for it to die again, at which point I will get it investigated. Cost £75, fitted myself.

Has an annoying squeaking sound coming from what would appear to be the front brakes... only starts squeaking after 10-15 minutes into journey, almost as if it doesn't start until the brakes are warmed up a bit. A very light touch on the brake pedal makes it stop, but it will come back as soon as the pedal is released. Sharp braking will cause it stop and not come back for several seconds. Service history shows new pads at 50,000. More an annoyance more than anything... radio solves this. :o)

General Comments:

Nice to drive.

Looks quite nice as well (if that is your thing), with body coloured bumpers and rear spoiler.

Very comfortable for myself and passengers when bombing around town as well as on longer journeys.

Nice performance increase, having driven a Vauxhall Nova 1.2 previously. However, once the initial excitement of having a car with a bigger engine than I am used to wore off, I am starting to feel the limitations, particularly when accelerating at lower speeds.

Engine is quite harsh and noisy and vibrates quite a lot, causing the slightly plastic-y trim to rattle, especially around 40mph in 2nd & 60mph in 3rd. However, some significant power kicks in here and the car is capable of some good over-taking.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th February, 2004

1995 Ford Escort LX 1.9 Gasoline 4-cylinder from North America


Slow, cheap, reliable commuter


Timing belt went out, nothing unusual at 108,000 (they are recommended to be replaced every 60,000 or so)

4 new tires, both front had uneven tread wear. Got 4 new tires, and alignment fixed, tread wear normal.

General Comments:

The Escort with the 1.9L engine is not very fast, nor is it comfortable on the inside over long distances.

However, mine does not leak a drop of oil, is very reliable so far.

The manual transmission has a tendency to grind more than any other manual I have driven.

Road noise isn't too bad, but lots of highway driving wouldn't be much fun, due to not much power in 5th gear.

Great winter car as well, even without anti-lock brakes.

Overall, a good car. But I would much rather have an Escort GT with the Mazda 1.8L engine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th February, 2004

1995 Ford Escort Sapphire 1.6 Zetec 16v from UK and Ireland


Undesirable and Undemanding


Oil & Filter Change.

New front Wiper Blades.

Idle Speed Adjustment.

New Spark Plugs x4.

General Comments:

Reliable car, that won't get you into trouble, but has enough power to get you out of it. Won't set your world on fire, but a good first car IMO.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th February, 2004

1995 Ford Escort L 1.4 petrol injection from UK and Ireland


Low-cost and reliable


The exhaust backbox fell off about 2 months after getting the car, a new backbox was needed.

Spark plugs needed replacing in January 2004.

General Comments:

For the £1600 I paid for the car I think it was quite a good deal considering it had only done 55000 miles. The salesman forgot to mention that the spark plugs had been in there a long time and would need replacing soon (see above), but apart from that hardly anything has gone wrong with the car during the first 8 months I've had it.

Fuel economy isn't the best considering it's a 1.4 litre engine, and even according to the Ford Escort manual the 1.8 Escort gets more miles per gallon than the 1.4 Escort! I probably get around 30 miles per gallon travelling to and from work every day, as it is along mostly urban roads.

For my Christmas 2003 present I had the car fitted with a 'chrome surface sports exhaust backbox' which really makes it sound like a more powerful car. What I found amazing was that even though we were told it would only increase engine power by around 3%, I can actually really notice the improvement in performance, as the 0-60 time is down to between 9 and 10 seconds. Maybe the exhaust will be worth the £350 extra insurance costs I had to pay (I am only 19 after all).

I find the Escort a large improvement over my previous Fiesta 1.8D.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th February, 2004

2nd Oct 2007, 05:02

The 1.4 will of course use more fuel than the 1.8, as it's under more stress than the 1.8. With a medium sized car such as this, buying a car with a smaller engine is a false economy- unless of course your insurance costs are so huge they override the fuel price!