1988 Ford Festiva L 1.3L carburetted from North America


Great little car for anybody!


Muffler rusted out @ 176K miles.

Replaced steering wheel and shifter knob- the plastic started to decompose and was sticky.

Parking brake cable snapped when I bought it.

Stuffing's coming out of the driver's seat.

There's rust on the car - its only enemy!

General Comments:

I consider the $200 I paid for the car a bargain.

It has never let me down (except when I got a flat and the tyre iron was missing!).

I get great gas mileage - about 38 mpg city driving.

The 63 hp engine is adequate for one or two people, but you can feel it strain when you pack 10 high school students into it.

Acceleration is not as fast as I'd like, but given the engine size I'm not surprised.

Still has the original transmission, clutch, and engine. However, the syncromeshes between 1st and 2nd are starting to fail since the gears grind if you shift too quickly.

I have never been let down by the car; the previous owners took very good care of it and it ran like a champ when I bought it. However I spent $1000 replacing the rear struts, all four tyres, the CV joints, the transmission oil seal and doing a few minor cosmetic things.

This little aluminium can on toothpicks has no blind spot, can park almost anywhere, and is practically indestructible.

The cabin is surprisingly roomy, and 4 people can fit in the car comfortably.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th September, 2004

13th Sep 2004, 13:18

You must really love this car to have spent that much money on it.

Hope it lasts long enough for you to get your money's worth out of it, but the mileage it already had on it when you bought it might be some kind of record for a Festiva, a disposable car if there ever was one.

1988 Ford Festiva LX 1.3L gas from North America


A fast, versatile, inexpensive loyal friend


I had to replace the front spindles at about 135,000 miles.

I replaced the alternator twice; luckily the repair shop I used kept records and it was under warranty.

There was some ignition module that cost next to nothing, but the repair cost me $500.

General Comments:

I loved this little car. Someone hit me in a parking lot and I got enough money to have it repainted bright bright red.

I loved driving this baby. It was fast on the freeways and it was slippery in parking lots.

I loved the ability to carry lots of stuff.

I worked as a social worker and it was just the greatest little thing for work. I had a good reason for selling it at the time, but I miss it. I am on the road a lot, putting upwards of 1000 miles a month of local driving and another Festiva would be fantastic.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd May, 2004

1988 Ford Festiva LX 1.3 from North America


A very plain looking gem of a car


A/C required 1/2 pound of freon at 120K miles.

General Comments:

The best car I ever owned.

Handled well and was very quick, considering the economy and small motor (63 horsepower, I think).

Easy to work on.

Very, very reliable.

Car was totaled after taking in a Chevy Suburban head-on. It lost, but it protected my wife well, resulting in a broken arm instead of a loss of her life. Wish I could bring one over from Taiwan (where there are a lot of these) because it did everything well and was very much a fashion statement, when I parked between the BMWs and Mercedes in my assigned parking space.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 21st February, 2004

1988 Ford Festiva L 1.3 gas from North America


A car that has paid for itself over and over again and is like a member of the family


Wheel bearings several times.

Brakes - normal wear and tear.

Gas tank leak at 107900 miles. Replaced it myself and it was fairly easy to do.

Radio - 4 speaker AM/FM has been lousy for years. It could be a blown channel because it doesn't handle FM or Stereo, but AM works.

Driver's side seat vinyl is tearing on the left side of the seat.

Exhaust pipe - pretty often, but the car is only driven 3000 mile per year and may end up with condensation moisture in the pipes that doesn't dry properly.

Persistent "buzz" in the shifter. Dealer never isolated it, but it began after the exhaust was changed at a "chain" exhaust replacement shop. I was able to stop the noise by bungee cording the shifter tightly into 4th gear when cruising.

The frame rails that run from front to back on each side of the car rusted through this year. My mechanic cut out the bad stuff and welded in new iron beams and it's been fine since then.

General Comments:

I expected this to be a disposable car when I bought it 16 years ago. Boy was I wrong.

I've driven over 108000 miles and the car does not burn oil.

It handles like a little slot car.

It's not quick, but makes up for that by not having to slow down in turns - excellent slalom car.

Does not NEED power steering - it's easy to spin the wheel with one hand.

Surprisingly comfortable - not great, but not bad either. Have driven from NY to FL and back and through Canada's Maritime Provinces without major pain.

I haven't gotten the high mpg others have mentioned. Somewhere in the mid 30's. Once got 47 mpg on 450 mile trip where speed was less than 65 mph.

Once had to park in a very tight space on a crowded Bronx, NY street during a snow/ice storm. Had no more than inches to spare front and back. Couldn't get as close to the curb as I wanted so I PUSHED IT SIDEWAYS into the space right to the curb! Try that with a land yacht!

Friends once picked it up and turned it 90 degrees in its parking space. Funny thing is it still fit between the painted lines on either side.

Really should have gotten the 5 speed version...

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

Review Date: 22nd January, 2004