1988 Ford Festiva L 1.3L Carburated from North America


I've owned over 20 cars, and in the short time I've had it, it's the most reliable car I've ever had


Needs shocks, struts, tires, brake lines, oil pan, muffler.

Has a gas line leak by the rear of the car.

A boot in the left front suspension needs to be replaced.

The radio and A/C don't work.

General Comments:

The seats aren't overly comfortable, but this car is highly reliable. Even with the gas line leak, I still get 30mpg. The inside of the car is surprisingly roomy and needs to be cleaned. With all its problems, I'm still considering if I should find another Festiva and sell this one, or still find another Festiva and restore the one I have.

This is a VERY tough car, and will take everything you can dish at it. Having had the car only 2 months, buying in late August 2009, and writing this review in late October 2009, I must say this is a car that if you get it, it will be reliable and good on gas. If you're looking for all the bells and whistles, it can still be customized.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd October, 2009

1988 Ford Festiva l carb 1.3 liter from North America




I put on a back muffler, and replaced tires and 1 light bulb; this car is tough.

General Comments:

I just went on a 900 mile trip with it and got an avg 44 mpg. I just can't beat that, with gas prices so high.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th June, 2008

12th Jun 2008, 18:46

In my area these cars have a great reputation for toughness and great gas mileage. We have a couple of friends now who are actively searching for good used Festivas to drive as second cars. They are very inexpensive to buy, own and repair and hold up extremely well. I've even considered trying to find one myself.

1988 Ford Festiva L Plus from North America


I loved my Festiva and wish I still had it!


Nothing major went wrong with the car. It had an oil leak which I never identified but other than that it performed well for 11 years.

General Comments:

I've wished 100 times over I had kept this car as a commuter car. Even with the oil leak it got over 35 MPG around town. I could have probably put $500 or less in getting it fixed and it would probably still be running today. Other than normal wear and tear, this car performed excellently from start to finish.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st April, 2008

1988 Ford Festiva LX 1.3 from North America


"The Beast" is always faithful


Alternator went out once.

Burns a little oil.

Indoor siding has begun to peel off.

General Comments:

"The Beast" turned 255,000 the other day and we celebrated with champagne.

Always faithful, never let me down, though not much fun to handle in wind or rain.

I've put 58000 miles on it in 5 years, driven across the country 4 times, and never had a serious problem except for one I caused.

Low maintenance, great gas mileage, and hot style: what more can a man want?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd August, 2007

1988 Ford Festiva LX 1.3L carbureted from North America


Best backyard find ever!


It had a blown engine and sat in someone's backyard with the windows open for 4 years.

The front wheel bearings were seized as well.

General Comments:

I replaced the engine with another that was rebuilt some time in the past, and replaced the 4 speed transmission with a 5 speed.

I also replaced the filthy interior and the front struts and hubs.

I consider this car a good investment, considering the price of gas and that I got the car, plus the parts needed to fix it for free.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th May, 2007

1988 Ford Festiva L from North America


I want this car to last my whole life


I've replaced the tailpipe/muffler 5 times I believe.

The original tires had no treads leading out to the sides, and I hydroplaned every puddle doing 75-80mph in order to keep up on Boston highways. New tires with correct treads were cheap.

Most if not all of the other problems I've had were from vandalism, bad mechanics, or my lack of regular maintenance.

The wheel bearings went out immediately upon receiving my car back from getting new tires.

The car dealer I bought it new from gave me a free pass to a car wash. I used it 'day one' and pulled the wheels out of alignment, because the tracks at the car wash were too wide.

My windows iced up on the inside beginning year 16, probably due to the spiderweb in the windshield from vandals.

Parking brake died in my 17th year.

Brake line developed a leak my 17th year, leaving me brakeless in traffic hour. Thank goodness my light was green. The dash brake warning light was blown off as a wiring problem, even though I've never had any other wiring problems with it.

It started leaking oil year 17 also.

I lost my shocks many years ago and never replaced them, and I still drive it every day.

It's at the mechanics now because the gear shifter is real sloppy suddenly at year 18.

Even though I had it undercoated new it looks like a puff pastry underneath, never garaged, rarely wash.

General Comments:

If this car was mandatory for all drivers, we'd all be better off economically and ecologically. Plus it's so 'zippy' you can't help but love to drive it. And when you love your car, you might be nicer on the road. It's smart, simple and roomy, even for tall people.

Before the gas prices soared, I put $5/month in it and went everywhere I needed to go.

In winter, I have the car people can rely on when their fancier cars are stuck.

I paid $7004 loan and all in 1988. It's an 'L' I believe. 5 speed manual. It's in the shop getting the gear shifter fixed in 2006. I can get up to 75mph easily if necessary, but I'm afraid I'll hit a bump and drop out the bottom. It's quite rusty I'm severely depressed to say.

Little things are beginning to fall apart due to neglect, vandalism and bad mechanics. I couldn't imagine I could find such great car again, so I just bought a 1993 Ford Festiva automatic for $850. I have a feeling the manual transmission is a big part of what I love about this car.

Any comments?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th September, 2006

20th Sep 2006, 12:00

These are very good cars that ford did not make and that is why they last (kia) made them.

20th Sep 2006, 16:47

Kia supplied the body and the suspension I believe, Mazda supplied the engine and transmission, and the rest was Ford.

30th Sep 2006, 10:29

So what did ford do just put there name on it l.o.l.

27th Feb 2007, 18:44

And if you remember, someone created the SHOgun which was a Festiva with a Taurus SHO engine (Yamaha). Jay Leno had/has one.