1997 Ford Escort LX 1.8i 16v Zetec from UK and Ireland


Neither cheap nor cheerful


Catalytic Converter collapsed at 50,000 miles.

Front wishbones replaced twice, at 55,00 miles and again at 60,000 miles.

Oil leak from sump gasket at 35,000 miles.

Oil leak from cylinder block gasket at 40,000 miles.

Air conditioning failed at 32,000 miles and 45,000 miles.

General Comments:

Performance is reasonable, but the revs do not increase very quickly when accelerating and it needs be to hovering around the 3500rpm to 5000rpm mark to make any real progress.

Tyres need to be replaced every 15000 miles in my experience on the front (driving) wheels.

The front seats are not at all comfortable on long journeys, with no real lumber support.

The rear seats are rock hard, with not much leg room if there are two average sized adults in the front seats.

Servicing and spare parts costs can be a real eye-widener, especially if you think (as I did) "anyone can fix a Ford for next to nothing".

Now the car is 6 years old, rust is starting to appear on the rear wheel arches and where the rear spoiler is attached to the bootlid.

On the plus side, fuel economy is reasonable (I get 350 miles out of a 35 litre fill-up).

The stereo (RDS5000) is very good despite being cassette only, with good quality speakers.

It's a nice colour! (Aubergine Metallic)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 31st May, 2003

1997 Ford Escort Base from North America


Double My Pleasure


Radiator went on both 97 escorts I own at 100000 miles.

Gas gages on both cars no longer work.

General Comments:

Followed The maintenance schedule to the letter and have been rewarded for doing so.

Both cars have over 120000 miles on them.

Back seats are cramped when tall people occupy front seats.

Good on gas.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 14th April, 2003

1997 Ford Escort LX 1.6 petrol from UK and Ireland


A bit of flash for not much cash


Nothing major. When the car is idling, the revs tend to dip and then rise, but it doesn't actually cut out.

The indicator bulb has blown twice - dodgy connection to blame.

An odd rattle from the exhaust system on full throttle seems to have died down.

General Comments:

As this is my first car and I'm only 17, its great that the Escort is simple and straightforward to drive, and also very cheap to maintain.

It looks good in metallic black with factory spoiler.

This one is very well equipped with electric windows, sunroof, central locking, electric driver's seat, power steering, drivers airbag and so on.

The handling isn't exactly the most sporting, but it is safe and predictable.

The 1.6 engine is surprisingly nippy and it cruises along nicely.

Despite the dodgy image, and the widely publicised excellence of the Focus, as a good value, cost effective car, the Escort impresses.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th March, 2003

1st Jun 2003, 15:40

Since my first entry the miles have been piling on, but an annoying metallic vibrating sound when accelerating has appeared. The exhaust is also starting to go. Other than that it hasn't missed a beat.

27th Oct 2004, 05:13

No offence, but I wouldn't class a Ford Escort as a bit of flash.

1997 Ford Escort LX 2.0 from North America


Great bargain


I have a difficult time increasing speed with the air conditioner on.

The rear-view mirror easily falls off.

Quite uncomfortable on long trips. I can usually last for about 3 hours before needing a stretch.

The cup holders do not fit pop cans.

General Comments:

I have had great experiences with this car, such as gas mileage and reliability.

Having the car for almost 4 years, we have spent less than $500 Canadian on unforeseen repairs.

Generally, we can get 550km per tank, compared to 250km with my previous vehicle, which was a Ford Taurus.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th February, 2003

1997 Ford Escort LX 2.5L. from North America


A car that needs no love


Thermostat stuck at 40,000mi. Had to shave head and replace head gasket.

Both front rotors have warped, twice.

Changed spark plugs and timing belt at 160k. miles.

General Comments:

I like this car. I have seriously ran the tar out of it.

I change the oil around every 12 thousand miles.

I think this car has held up well considering I drive it 130 miles per day to work and back.

I usually exceed 95mph at least once a day for a 10 to 15 mile stretch.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th January, 2003