1997 Ford Escort LX 2.0 from North America
Just keeps going..
Broken coil spring (80 for pair), parking brake cables (80), balljoint (30), parking light, third brake light for safety.
Downpipe of exhaust had a hole, so I replaced the entire exhaust for about 600 in parts. I replaced the alternator (200) this past summer. The heater blower motor quit (retrofit one from Kia Rio parts car) as well as the speedometer.
Windshield developed a crack running across the bottom (about 2-3 in from the bottom).
Cable hood release broke, so I wired it through the grill. It's handier that way anyway.
Left stabilizer linkage keeps failing (cheap), so I no longer bother to replace it - just check once in a while to make sure that's the only clunk I hear.
The shifter linkage bushings have disintegrated, making shifting gears interesting. I'll have to get around to repairing that sometime soon.
The car has done well, as I only bought it for $400 and have driven it for two full years (about 40-50K km). I have spent $1500 in parts, including the above list, as well as the timing belt and water pump for preventative maintenance.
The car is relatively easy to work on, but is built like an import - because the subframe is Mazda (ie. you have to remove the speedometer sensor in order to check the transaxle oil level).
No complaints. I'll be impressed if it holds together for another year. The roads in this area are pretty rough, particularly in the winter, and I do not take it easy on this thing.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 5th February, 2010