1996 Ford Escort LX 1.9 liter from North America


Good value for the money for someone who keeps an automobile for five to six years


The check engine light came in the fourth year of ownership. Engine sensor replaced at a cost of $150.00.

Alloy wheels started to pit while under warranty/dealer replaced wheels.

Automatic seatbelt was at times slow to work after warranty expired.

At seven years, rear strut spring was broken and front tie rods were worn. The cost of repair $800.00.

At eight years; radiator leaked, timing belt was due for replacement.

Starting at four years the speedometer needle would bounce up and down wildly and continued to do so until car was traded in.

General Comments:

The 1.9 liter escort was not the fastest car on the road, but was very reliable and practical. After the sixth year of ownership the cost of repairing the car increased and more and more repairs were needed so the decision to trade in the car was made.

It is a shame the car didn't hold up better as it aged.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th February, 2008

1996 Ford Escort LX 1.9 litre from North America


Turd on wheels


Engine dropped a valve seat, causing catastrophic engine failure at 125k miles.

Transmission failure at 140k miles.

Repeated problems with front disc brakes.

Speedometer cluster is problematic.

Rear defogger switch is temperamental.

Near impossible to keep in alignment.

Intense vibration at high speeds, despite changing nearly all steering/suspension components.

Phantom trouble codes, despite replacement of faulty components.

General Comments:

The car is very light for its size, making it especially easy to push while broken down.

The optional factory premium sound system is excellent, assuming the factory CD player wants to operate that day.

The car has a "death box" feel to it; despite having dual airbags, I always felt like a side impact would end me.

When the car was in perfect running order (not often) it was a fun, peppy ride.

I sunk enough money in maintenance into this pile to justify sending it to the scrapyard.

Anxiety over constant mechanical problems has led to a diminished mental state for myself.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 30th November, 2007

1996 Ford Escort LX 1.9 from North America


The best little car that could do anything it's bigger counterparts can do


The Check Engine light is on since around 100,000.

Needs Emission Control Module ($25.00 piece).

Speedometer needles bounces like crazy above 65.

Drivers side seat belt won't work.

Front driver side axle and CV joint problems.

General Comments:

Car is quick and responsive for a small car.

I have few problems as mentioned, but would not trade it for the world.

It is great on gas and gets me around tight hairpin turns even at 75 mph.

I prefer this over my van lately with comfort and gas prices and don't mind putting money into this car it is well worth having and fun to drive.

However when it rains you can't crack your window, it comes in like crazy and the headlights seem very dim when it rains or on a very dark night.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th May, 2007

1996 Ford Escort LX 1.9 SEFI from North America


A great $1000 Car


Cracked exhaust manifold (cheap junkyard fix)

Oxygen sensor.

Replaced front tie rods. Common Escort problem it seems?

PCV Valve.

I may have a leak in my heater core.

Original rear struts are getting weak.

General Comments:

This is my first "big 3" American car, the last being a Pennsylvania built VW Rabbit...LOL. I have always owned used Japanese cars, and was somewhat worried about reliability when buying a domestic. So far (knock on wood) the car has been great aside from the problems stated above, which some are expected at this mileage. It has never broken down or failed to start. I bought the Escort because 1. you can pick them up for dirt cheap 2. basic, reliable engines 3. GREAT gas mileage 4. did I mention how cheap they are?.

Although the 88hp 1.9 CVH engine is doggy and noisy, it runs strong and I have been told by several mechanics that they run forever. I swear I see at least half a dozen escorts on the road everyday (far more than Cavaliers or even Neon's of this year). It's a hatchback that fits a TON of crap and has awesome seats (the LX model is much better than the Pony). Being an econo car, the best feature is it's gas mileage. I usually get 30+ in city, always 38-40 on the highway. Since they built so many of them, parts are cheap and easy to find at a junkyard.

I would STRONGLY suggest buying one of these cars if you can find one for $1,500 or less. Sure, it's not as refined or well-built as a used Japanese car, but in my opinion it's a great American econobox.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th January, 2007