I have a 1997 Fiesta Chicane 1.25 Zetec. It hates me and the feeling is very mutual!
The bushes had to be changed, the electrics have always been faulty from the beginning and the only electrics that have worked consistently is the stereo that I wired in! Most recently the indicators won't work properly. Interior light comes on usually when it's daytime and not when it's needed.
Since January the car has stalled when you let the revs drop, which would usually happen in second gear or anything below that! The PAS stops working at the same time and even if I manage to prevent the car from completely stalling the PAS still goes. Heard that it could be the throttle sensor which either takes me back to the electrics or towards shelling out money I can't spare!
This is my first car and it's the last time I have a Ford... next time I'm sticking to VW!
I have a 97 Chicane 1.25 Zetec-S.
It cost me a bit, but it's OK... I hope.
Got a 1000 mile drive in it next week, so I hope it holds off OK :S.
I've had my Fiesta LX 12.5 for 7 years now, and it's 11 years old with 73k on the clock..
Shame that some of the owners here have had so much electrical issues, but from my personal experience, these are what to watch out for:
1) Rear tailgate contacts on pre 1999 model, always corrode meaning rear wiper works sometimes. Get replacement from scrapheap.
2) Got to agree the bushes are rubbish and need changing every couple of years. Wheel alignment costs on that as well.
3) Door contacts (for the lights) rust and need to be changed when the lights short out. About £10 to change them.
4) The fan rheostat burns out meaning only speed 4 is available. Get a replacement for £6 new and don't get Ford to con you into 1.5 hours labour - for a 3 min job behind the glove box.
So you're asking - why on earth do I still own this? The engine...
The engine is simply amazing. It's 11 years old, still smooth & torquey. I've done everything from 500 to 5 miles in a day in this and it hasn't put a foot wrong, at all, ever.
It's faster than most 1.8's and 2.0s off the mark due to lack of weight. 7 years on and I still LOVE driving this car. It is still so much fun for what it is.
You can park it ANYWHERE in London, it's narrow enough to get through stupid small gaps that buses make to try and ruin your day.
There's no silly high boot line and thick pillars to ruin visibility, and it's frugal to fill up.
I'll get rid of it when it fails the MOT beyond belief. In the mean time, save your money for a rainier day, or British Airway's offers to the Caribbean at present!