1993 Ford Festiva 1.3 4 cylinder from North America


Here we go again


All of these needed when the vehicle was purchased: Headlight relay, speedo cable, and rear wheel bearings. Came with a stock radio, so that and the stock speakers had to go.

General Comments:

Normally one can't really write a serious review on a vehicle that they have only driven for 600 miles, however I owned an '89 Festiva for 11 years and put 140K on it before putting it down at 210,000 miles. That was about 6 months ago.

It's probably enough to say that when the '89 died I went out and found another to replace it. Actually it never did die. Was running and driving when I donated it to a local charity. The new(er) version is a '93 with 98,000 on it. Fully expect to get at least another 100,000 on this one. Like I said, I've only put 600 miles on it which is 2 tanks of gas (10 gallon tank) and it's come in at a tick over 38 MPG in mixed driving.

For a more in depth review check my earlier post under "Closest I've ever come to driving for free". The '89 and '93 are basically the same vehicle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th October, 2018

27th Oct 2018, 18:58

How much do you have in it?

29th Oct 2018, 16:06

I used to carpool with a guy who bought a new Festiva after his Camry died. That car was the archetypal c***box: everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, on that car felt lightweight and flimsy, from the thin doors to every piece of plastic in the interior, moreso than any other microcar I have ever been in (until the arrival of the Smart car). An old air-cooled VW Bug is a tank in comparison.

26th Dec 2018, 22:25

True, true. All you get is 1,700 pounds of tin, plastic, iron, glass and rubber. Certainly wouldn't be a car to impress a date with unless the bulge in your pants she's impressed with is in your back pocket.

It's a car you have to drive not just point. No cruise, no power steering, no cameras ('cause you can see out of it), manual trans, and no media center. What one gets in return is utter reliability, 40 miles per gallon, cheap insurance and no emissions hassles. If something does go wrong with it, a basic set of hand tools and a few bucks will get you on your way. Bought a used '89, drove it from 76K to 210K, and never once was left on the side of the road. Only time it failed to start was due to a dead short in the starter.

As far as the air-cooled VWs; I'm 67 years old and have been driving since I was 15 so I know a little something about them. Drums all around, carbs that were never quite right, no heat to speak of, and 36HP that was ready for a rebuild at 90K.

Guess it's all in what you're looking for in a vehicle. If you're going on a 1,500 mile road trip, rent SUV for a week or two. If you want A to B daily with economy and without drama, the Festiva is a great choice. I've owned dozens of cars in my driving career, from 60s muscle cars to luxury boats, and these little c**p boxes may be the best vehicles I've had the pleasure to drive.

You said your experience with the car came from sitting in one. Did you ever own one, or even drive one? Nuff said.

Original poster here.

1993 Ford Festiva L 1.3 gasoline from North America


Nothing has ever gone wrong with this car. I have had 2 other Festivas in my travels, one I bought new, and retired to a student at 100k, (who still drives it at 300k) a white one I bought when the kids no longer needed booster seats, and this one I drive now. Collectively, they may be the Model T reincarnated. Always runs, always gets us from point A to B.

My only complaint is not with Mazda/Ford, but with the industry, as 12" tires are getting scarce. Oh, and a right hand factory door mirror would be a welcome addition.

General Comments:

These cars will go forever. They are a basic econobox, the Japanese and Koreans getting the plusher models with cloth sun roofs, air conditioning, fancier seats and stereos, but hey, for a car I just gave a grand for (and my other one cost $800), I have no complaints. Stereos can be installed easily, seats can be plushed up with sheepskin seat covers, add-ons are abundant.

In a world with cars that are impossible to identify what part does what, these are refreshingly simple to work on.

I commute 7 miles each direction to work, and can go almost three weeks on a tank and a little change if I need to.

It uses no oil, has a new timing belt, I replaced the plugs for fun, it did not need them, and this one has the stopping power my first one never seemed to achieve.

In its defense, that first car followed my 1980 Fiesta, which was an awesome car as well, but stopped a lot better.

For a car that is more than 20 years old, its seats are not split, just cracked.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th August, 2015

9th Aug 2015, 02:59

These are a surprisingly solid piece of equipment. Ford could use a few vehicles of such simplicity, quality and durability in their lineup today :)