1997 Ford Fiesta LX 1.25 16v from UK and Ireland

Faults:

Nothing except for usual wear and tear.

Someone attempted to vandalise the the driver side wing mirror, but fortunately it just clicked back into place.

General Comments:

After a thorough inspection, I got this car at a bargain price from an auction, and for what it is, I can't really fault it.

It's completely standard, never been modified, no electric windows or air con or stereo. Oh well, at least it's reliable.

The Zetec engine can take some abuse believe me!

It's got some acceleration for a 1.2 and does 100mph surprisingly easily. On a wet day it's possible to spin the wheels through 3rd gear. Also handles very well with the good old steel rims and not much bodyroll at all. Good feel through the steering (not power assisted) and slick gear change. IT'S NO SPORTS CAR THOUGH, just a Fiesta.

All controls laid out clearly.

The headlights are incredibly bright, I constantly get fellow drivers flashing their main beam at me because they think I've got mine on. I get a lot of enjoyment flashing mine back at them!

A few rattles in the cabin but after 90000 miles one shouldn't be to surprised. Pretty good build quality though. I do find the seats rather uncomfortable after maybe 45 minutes or so, and they're starting to wear.

Fairly small amount of rust on the rear arches and door sills, I believe Ford are known for this, especially with older cars like this. Love the paint, bright red.

Nearly a year on 100% trouble free motoring and it's quite nice to drive. I will say one thing though - this car does not cruise very well, nearly 3500rpm at 70mph. I understand small cars are geared like this, but a slightly longer ratio gearbox for better cruising wouldn't really make any difference to the performance of this engine, but maybe am just nit picking.

Overall a great little car. Would buy another Ford.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th December, 2009

1997 Ford Fiesta Encore 1.3 from UK and Ireland

Summary:

I would not buy another because of the terrible fuel consumption

Faults:

Rusty wheel arches.

Broken road spring.

Rear wheel cylinders.

Brake pipes and hoses.

All replaced and repaired by myself, and I considered each of these a wear and tear item due to age.

General Comments:

I liked it. It was old when I bought it, and I ran it for 2yrs.

The interior was in incredible condition, and was still good when I got rid of it.

Insurance wasn't bad, performance and comfort were acceptable, but did find that tyre brands made a phenomenal difference to road noise.

Handling was superb, never any problems wet or dry.

My only complaint was the fuel consumption. The best I ever achieved on a run was 49mpg, and the norm was around 40mpg. This was all longish distances, minimum journey time an hour, and all on major roads, not exceeding 60mph. I considered this a nonsense for the size of the engine, and the way I drove. (It was the 60bhp variant, although my friend's 50bhp variant was exactly the same.)

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th June, 2009

2nd Jul 2009, 05:55

I am not being funny, but what do you expect on an engine where it dates back to the 1960's, the basics of it. I would have said 49 mpg as the best is good. If you want good fuel consumption, then buy a more modern engine. Even an average of 40 mpg isn't bad even today's standards.

1997 Ford Fiesta Van 1.8 diesel from Portugal

Summary:

Very easy to own and maintain, but certainly not the quickest car of its line

Faults:

Power steering cracked in the first year, but was fixed under warranty. Never bothered me since.

Timing belt was replaced at 140000, mainly out of precaution.

Fuel lines were cracked, but were replaced and never bothered me since.

Clutch pump replaced at 165000 km. Part was €70 from Ford.

Fractured alternator at 174000 km. Seal due to overuse of bad ball bearing. Attribute this to personal abuse. Replaced with rebuilt alternator for €281. Worked fine since.

Clutch disc and pressure plate replaced at 175000 km. Replaced for €170 total.

General Comments:

Of all the used cars I've purchased, this one has last me the longest (almost 6 years now). It's far from being plush or luxurious, but if you need something to get you from point A to point B every day and that is very fuel efficient as well as very low cost in terms of maintenance, this is the car for you. It's not the most comfortable car out there, but it's not as cramped as a Land Rover Defender either.

It's engine, a 1.8 Endura DE Diesel engine, has some fairly decent torque and is very well built in terms of reliability, but don't expect to be in any races with this engine as it's very sluggish climbing hills. Also, remember to change the timing belt every 60000km. This is a very serious recommendation if you wish to keep the maintenance cheap and keep the car on the road and not at the mechanic.

Most of the problems are pretty much attributed to wear and tear of just about any used car, and nothing really out of the normal. If you can look past that detail, you'll be pleased with it's incredible reliability and easy upkeep.

In general, a good buy, but just remember that you are getting a used car and there are ALWAYS precautions to take into consideration before buying, regardless of the make and model.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd March, 2009