2000 Ford Escort ZX2 from North America - Comments

14th Jul 2006, 10:16

I bought a 2000 ZX2 in the Fall of 2003. The previous owner was the original and had put about 75,000 miles on it. She had replaced the transmission at around 60,000. This should have been a red flag because I replaced it once again at about 82,000 miles and it just recently went out again at 98,000 miles. The only other things I have had wrong with it is the fly wheel, the rear defrost disconnected, and it idles very hard to where it kind of shakes the car. I really loved the little size of the car and the sunroof, it was a sporty car, but I can't afford all those automatic transmissions, and I drove it and took care of it very well.

20th Jul 2006, 18:07

I just recently bought a 98 ZX2 with 146 thousand miles on it. I've had it for a month now and have had major electrical issues - the battery over charges to the point that it blows off vent caps. I replaced the alternator and voltage regulator, and I'm still having the problem. Any ideas?

29th Jul 2006, 08:59

U love me little ZX2 however at 84,000 miles all #%$%^&* (* has broken loose on the valve train. The mechanic says a head rebuild will cost 1,500 dollars. The car still runs great, no blown valve seats or worn guides. The oil has been changed regularly since I have owned it (the past 23,000 miles) This is not making sense to me. Are there any adjustments incorporated into the valve train to tighten the lash on this engine?

30th Apr 2007, 06:08

I purchased my used 98 Escort ZX2 in 99 with 54,000. I still own it today with 200,000. The only problem I've had with this car is the air conditioning no longer works. The remote locks for the passenger side never worked. I've had to replace the entire exhaust system because there was a hole in the catilic converter (flex mesh) and since the Escort ZX2's exhaust system comes in one piece, we had to replace the entire exhaust system. My emergency brake hasn't worked in years. I often have to replace brake pads and rotors, but that's probably due to the fact that the back brakes are not adjusted accordingly due to the emergency brake. I also started experiencing transmission issues...were the transmission would seem to slip. I got the transmission oil changed at 180,000 and that seem to have fixed the problem. I also find the car is hard on gas. I've changed the spark plugs and air filter, but that doesn't make much of a difference. I've done regular oil changes every 5000 since I've had the car. All in all, the car runs smooth and I can't complain. Regular maintenance is really all I've put into the car and it still runs very nicely. It should last a few more years.

5th Jun 2007, 12:45

For those wondering if there is something about valve lash adjustments of these cars: the 4 cylinder Contours basically have the same engines and the Hayes manual states that the later engines may need valve lash adjustment with shims if there is excessive valve chatter, even though they have hydraulic vave adjusters.

Thanks for the insightful comments on motor mounts and electric grounding.

25th Jun 2007, 11:27

I just purchased a 2000 ford zx2. I'm trying to get it through Maryland state inspection, which has been a major pain. Maryland probably has the pickiest and most difficult inspection in the U.S!!! Anyways, I have moisture build up behind the lens of my front headlights, that I need to get out somehow. someone told me to take out the light bulb and use a hairdryer. I will try that, but just in case, I also cannot figure out how to remove the lens alone! it seems like someone used a sealant, and it looks like the whole light component would need to be taken out, which seems ridiculous to me! could anyone tell me how you take off the lens?

25th Jun 2007, 14:29

Yes, someone glued the lens on the reflector, someone at the factory. You have to take out the whole headlight and dry the inside through the light bulb insertion hole.

29th Jul 2007, 14:18

I have a 98 Ford Escort ZX2 base model, and it's a wonderful car. It's all stock and I've beat all but one car I've raced; it lost against a 67 Chevelle that had a 454 in it with a 2 speed power glide. My car is a 5 speed. I took the Chevelle off the line, but he flew by me in a heart beat.

All I've done is routine maintenance. My mom bought it new, and I did all the work to it.

I beat on the car every where I go, and just at 234000 miles I have to replace the tranny clutch and shifter linkage. Other than that, it does go through brakes quite often, but it's the best car I've owned. Also, I drive 100 miles one way to work 6 days a week, and spend 55 dollars on gas a week at $3 dollars a gallon.

I recommend this car to everyone I know. It's a great car. The first guy with all the problems; I don't know what to tell you. I beat the crap out of my car, and it runs great and drives great.

Good luck.

8th May 2008, 23:14

Thanks for all these comments cause I've been looking at 2000 escort zx2 and I really like it I think im going to buy it.

9th Jun 2008, 13:07

I just bought a 2000 ZX2 for my son 2 weeks ago. When I test drove it, I couldn't believe how well it handled and the acceleration that little engine produced. He loves it and his friends are all envious. They say, "I didn't know Ford had a sports car other than the Mustang". I hope it gets him through college.

10th Jun 2008, 01:57

I've changed plugs and wires on my 2000 ZX2, and it still has a bad miss in it. It runs really good most of the time, but occasionally it'll start missing real bad, and has no power. It acts like it wants to stall out, especially going up hill. I do regular maintenance on it, but just started this recently and I'm not sure what it could be. Has anyone had the same problem, and if so, what had to be done to fix it?

5th Feb 2009, 11:51

I have a 1999 ZX2 bought in Nov 99 with 14 miles on it. I now have 175,856 miles on it and it runs great. The only non-warranty major repair I had to do was the tranny at 120,000. Not bad really as that for many would be two cars worth of miles. I still get 28-30 mpg in the city and have hit 36 mpg in the mountains of PA. I can't seem to let this one go. The body is in great shape, the interior just needs to be detailed and it still runs great. Water pump replaced at 165,000. I am amazed at how this seemingly throw away car continues to perform. Shame on Ford for ceasing its production. I would buy a new again in a heartbeat!

17th Feb 2009, 07:01

I purchased a 2000 ZX2 in 2004 with 62,000 miles on it. It ran great, performed great, and without warning the engine blew at 86,000 miles. Not even a single hint that there was a problem. $2400 later one new engine and a massive headache later the car runs better than when I bought it with the exception of some interesting sounding noises.

- Also, I've replaced the front rotors 3 times, they keep warping and I don't have an alignment problem.

- Had to completely replace the E-Brake as it totally froze up.

- Tires definitely do not wear evenly, I've put 5 sets on, again no apparent alignment problems, even when placed on the rack and checked multiple times.

- I live in the South, therefore no excessive driving in salt or harsh winter conditions.

- I now have 130,000 miles on the vehicle and overall it performs great, gets good gas mileage, and after repairs is a reliable vehicle. I do think that some more attention by the manufacturer should be placed on quality of workmanship and parts. From what I gather from reading this forum, far too much went wrong with the ZX-2 very early in its life.