28th Jul 2001, 10:56

KIA didn't make the Festiva!!! They are made by a foreign based Ford plant in Korea... which by the way wips out some of the best cars ever made... and I didn't know Festivas were made in 98'..aren't those Aspires???!!!

My Festiva has never had any problems, and there is absolutely no wear whatsoever to the engine... and it has 146,000 miles on it!!! It still had cross hatches in the cylinder walls! And the bearings were fine. The piston rings had absolutely no wear on them either.

The only thing I ever did to the car was replace some gaskets, which is nothing! One time I recieved 65 mpg!!! But that was just once, it now gets 50 mpg... but any way the Ford Festiva is the best car ever made... fact.

29th Jul 2001, 19:55

"The 1.3 liter engine in the Ford Festiva was designed and manufactured by Mazda of Japan. Engine designation for the 1.3 SOHC is "B3", and is visible stamped on the I.d. number pad on the engine block." Fordfestiva.com.

17th Oct 2001, 02:34

Ya should have kept the bloody Holden!!! My Holden is wonderful! Oh and my friend's Festiva fell apart just like everyone else who got them from her work (and yes, they got them from different dealers so it couldn't have been a dud car). They're all LEMONS!

3rd Nov 2001, 00:51

I recently bought a 1990 Festiva. It's in mint condition, all stock parts, and runs like a dream. Burns no oil, and is quite peppy. Having owned a Ford product before (a Lynx) I was a bit hesitant to buy this Festiva. So far, it is absolutely the best car I've owned. Despite the fact that it is a small car, it is solid. The hood has a nice heavy feel when you close it, and the doors close solidly as well. BTW, if my sources are correct, the Festiva was made for Ford by both KIA and Mazda. In short, the Festiva is hard to beat: it gives a lot for so little. Thanks for putting up this web site.

2nd Jun 2002, 01:39

I have a 1997 Ford Festiva and I think its the best car ever. I have only had it for 3 months so I guess that's not really long enough to judge how many problems I may have with the car, but another Festiva Owner I know hasn't had any problems with hers either. I must say that when I was checking the oil and stuff today though, I did notice that it said KIA on the tag near the engine, not Ford, or Mazda or anything else people have been suggesting. LOL I still love my car though!

18th Jun 2002, 00:31

My father-in-law has a 1991 Festiva 1.3L 5 speed. It has 197,000 miles on it and has only needed to have the front suspension reworked. According to the N.A.D.L. book given to me while I was in the police academy, his car was manufactured by Kia in Kyung-Ki-Do Korea.

23rd Jul 2002, 03:48

I have a second hand 1996 Ford Festiva for 7 months. I have had to replace to manual transmission which the service centre stated would go at around these miles in either the Festiva or Mazda 121. I have had to replace the wheel bearings and now the CV joints have gone.

The good thing is that it is economical as anything.

I had a 1994 Hyunda Excel and it would eat this car.

I will never have a front wheel drive car again.

4th Sep 2002, 20:06

Bought my Festiva new in 1988. Ten years and 216,145 miles later traded it in. Other than exhaust, brakes, and tires, never replaced a part. Last year I saw an '88 for sale in front of a house. "Damn good cars," I thought so I went to take a look. It was my old car! Of course I bought it back (for $350). Now it's my daily driver. Still the best car I've ever had (out of 35).

21st Oct 2002, 19:12

Can someone tell me where I can find the fuel pump relay on my 1990 Festiva? I pulled the pump out of the tank and tested it and it works. All fuses seam to be OK. I just can find the relay. The inertia switch wasn't tripped either. Thanks, Rick...

8th Apr 2003, 12:15


I bought a 1989 Ford festiva, it had 198,803 when I bought it, and now it has 278,035 miles on it, and I had to replace the exhaust because it got rusty. That was all I have ever done to it... It is a nice little car, a little noisy, but nice. 0-60 in around 12 seconds... not a hot rod, but a nice little car.


11th Nov 2003, 18:22

I bought a brand new KIA POP in 2000 (successor to Ford's festiva) it is an excellent car, never changed anything, but the brakes once (150 US$) it was an excellent car until my sister crashed it into a wall... Anyway very reliable car and very cheap to maintain.

12th Jun 2008, 06:50

Well I guess the first person must have driven the car harder than a race car to blow the motor in a couple of years.

My wife drives one, it's a 98 model 1.3 ltr. We've owned it for 3 yrs now, and she has done 65,000 ks since the first day she got it. It now has over 200,000 ks on the clock. It has never had a spanner put to it except for the services and brake pads.

It is a top little car, and I would buy my wife another one if she wanted it, and she still loves the little Festiva.

8th Nov 2009, 18:09

I live in Australia, and I own a 1998 1.3 litre Manual Festiva, and it is a fantastic little car. I originally owned a 89 KE laser, which if you have ever owned one, you would know those things are built SOLID.

I have never had an issue with my Festiva. I put a spoiler and mags on it (similar to the demon pack), keyless entry, alarm, immobiliser, ripped out the factory six stacker and put in a new Kenwood MP3/USB/bluetooth, iPod deck with 6x9 Pioneer speakers in the rear and Clarion 6" tweeters in the front.

Add to this the 2.5" back cat stainless steel exhaust system with muffler and resonator, sports racing pedals and neon interior; this is one mean looking little Festiva.

It may not be the fastest car on the market, but I have NEVER had to spend more than a few hundred on any repairs, and in an Aussie summer (45 + degrees centigrade) the air con and reliable engine ensure a reliable drive every time.

22nd Aug 2010, 09:51

I personally haven't owned Festivas, but my neighbour has 3 of them; using them for his security business, and they've all done over 550 000 on the clock, still same engine, never touched. The only thing he's replaced is the gearbox once on one of them. I am dead serious.

These things, as long as they get serviced regularly, they go forever. Great little cars.

4th Dec 2010, 19:46

It's not a race car, but cheap reliable transport. 5sp manual. It's a good work taxi for me.

10th Apr 2011, 19:32

I've had two Festivas, the first was a 95 1.3L and it was my first car, the thing was indestructible, the only thing changed on it was oil and brakes. The second is a 98 1.5L and it has had nothing done to it other than an oil change when I first purchased it. It does have a small oil leak, but it is not a huge issue.

I am in awe with the fact someone blew one of these engines in such a short time, then I saw they had previously owned a Holden Commodore. Having inherited one of these myself and knowing how unreliable they are, I'm surprised a small thing like the big end going on a Festiva has been worthy to mention to anyone. Shows that there is always one bad build in what is generally a good thing.

20th Oct 2011, 05:32

Kia definitely did make Festiva. I own one and it has a Kia manufacturers plate under the bonnet. I think they are actually a Kio Rio.

2nd Aug 2013, 20:01

Well if Kia didn't make Festivas, why does mine have Kia Motors on the compliance plate? Hmm.

3rd Aug 2013, 10:01

Yes, in the 12 years since the comment you replied to was posted, it has been well established that KIA did indeed build the Festiva, as well as the Aspire. Not Ford, who seem to be focusing on Mexico now for their domestic small car production.

22nd Oct 2013, 03:34

Gday, what viscosity oil goes in a Ford Festiva 1.3 litre man. Engine oil that is. And what problems do they have? Cheers.

13th Jul 2017, 10:18

Made by KIA. Mazda motor with a Ford badge. Can't blame Ford.

Yet Holden Commodores are less reliable than most if not all cars LOL.

The fact that you still drove the car with non operative brakes (staying on while driving) says a lot about you!

And the fact that more Festivas are still going than Commodores of that decade makes your argument invalid!!!