I agree, test driving is quite helpful in making car buying decisions. Test driving several of the same kind is even more helpful. Maybe the reviewer got a car with faults and doesn't even know it. The seat frame and springs could be broken, the engine might need a tune-up maybe even a timing solenoid? Have someone knowlegeable look at it. Good luck.
I disagree. You can tell if a car "performs like a 1.3", is "boring" to drive and is uncomfortable within a few miles on a test drive. If it is, don't buy it, simple as that.
This car is no more a lemon than the reviewer is a plum!
Author of 13/04/07. Did I make any assumptions towards your 'former standards'? Or indeed your driving capabilities? Please, there is no need to insult me, I am merely offering my findings of this particular vehicle. If that upsets you, I apologise. Remember, this site is for people to have their say!
Please allow me to introduce a few of my qualities, at least before you feel obliged to post more insults!
I am a professionally qualified rally driver, have had (and driven in numerous fashions) many faster and far more/less luxurious vehicles (Sierra/Escort Cosworths, Subarus, Alfa's, Merc SL's to name, but a few) and I am really sorry to say that despite what you may say and believe, I find the Mondeo Zetec is still a very dull car.
"I've never been so bored driving a car" was my quote, to which you responded:
"This one really is nonsense. You won't find a more enjoyable, better handling family sized car for anything like the money. And a healthy Mondeo will run rings around your old Calibra in the twisty stuff, so your former standards aren't particularly high. Yours is either broken or you haven't a clue how to drive it."
My standards aren't high and I haven't a clue how to drive it? I happen to hold an ICRA Group B rally license (you know, the next level down from the likes of Mcrae, Loeb etc!) and can quite confidently say I can drive better than most others on british roads without boast, especially in a race situation. However, despite how you drive this particular marque, it is still a slow, heavy beast.
I'd bet, in fact, that my retired and lovely neighbour's 1.3 Starlet is faster in a straight line and around anything resembling a corner!
Now, I've owned a few cars in my time, so I can safely say my former standards are 'varied' and include some fantastic marques to say the least! Some, I agree are not so great, here is a taster:
MG Metro - First car, fantastic fun as it had the MG engine and chassis to match. Learnt autotesting in it. Russ Swift still uses them today to play about in. If you don't know who he is, he's somebody that can really drive! Look him up on the internet.
MG Montego GTi - Big heavy car, it was F reg, 2.0 but would do 140+mph, something a Mondeo Zetec could never achieve!
Sierra RS Cosworth (2wd) - Fantastic car, loved it. Nothing would keep up with it in the early 90's, and not much would nowadays either if I still had it! Comfy and reliable too. People nowadays hate them and say theyre unbelievably unreliable. Wouldn't you be if you were more than 10 years old and had a high pressure turbo!
Escort RS Cosworth - My Rally car, group B prepared, 450 bhp, rocket ship and road legal. Raced a Diablo on a drag strip at Santa Pod. I didn't win, but was only 0.2 seconds away from it over a quarter mile!
Alfa 155 - Fun; but this was when Alfas weren't that reliable!
Subaru Legacy B4 RSK - Japanese Import lunacy machine, on a constant mission to headbutt the horizon, 2.5 twin turbo, 360 bhp. Got rid when new company car arrived.
Mercedes SL500 - Got this in 1995, loved it to bits. Sold it FOR A PROFIT a year later!
MG ZS 2.0 - A diesel, very comfy, very economical, much faster than the Mondeo!
The above are to make an example of some of the variety of cars I had the pleasure of owning. If I could compare any one of the cars I've owned to the Mondeo, I'd have to look at the medium size family hatch/saloon, so for this instance, I'll choose a Rover 820 SLi. Owned this in 1997 when new. Far more luxurious than the Mondeo, far cheaper, much much faster and again, a better handling car.
Despite how hard I try, I really can't give the Mondeo's characteristics any praise. The only thing worthy of any praise are the 5 spoke RS wheels which do look quite nice, plus the aircon and heaters were fantastic. But lets face it, who buys a car based on these?
I have owned many other cars not mentioned and driven all of them at least once or twice. I am fortunate enough to know the car trade well and buy and sell cars regularly. At last count I have owned and sold 276 cars. Some I love, some I hate. The Mondeo has now gone. I hated it. The Calibra has also gone, I loved it. Cars are a personal thing, what one person likes, another may not and vice versa.
That's what this site is for, to review cars and rate/slate them.
You love your Mondeo my friend, good for you I say. If you like your car, great! If not, say so... I have not made personal remarks towards anybody, yet you decide to cast an aspersion questioning my driving ability amongst other things.
I didn't need to test drive the Mondeo as I knew I could make decent profit on her. I merely bought it and after driving it a while in between tidying her up, felt obliged to offer my findings on here!
In my time I'll no doubt own another. But if anybody asks me should I specifically buy a 2.0 Zetec Mondeo, I know what my answer will be...
"The Mondeo Zetec is still a very dull car."
It's still better to drive than the Calibra which you claim to love. This is not just my opinion based on driving several Calibras and Mondeos, but find me any professional review that says otherwise. Tiff Needell (who IS a race licence holder) didn't have a good word to say about the Calibra's dynamics when he tested it. But you love it??
"MG Montego GTi - Big heavy car, it was F reg, 2.0 but would do 140+mph",
Oh that's a corker! Just spat a mouthful of coffee over the keyboard. 140 mph? Off a cliff, maybe. Even the MG Turbo would only just pull 140 and that had 35 bhp more and a slug more torque.
"Sierra RS Cosworth (2wd) -... People nowadays hate them"
That'll be why you'll still pay £10k+ for a tidy one then.
"Escort RS Cosworth - My Rally car, group B prepared, 450 bhp..."
That'll be the Group B that was cancelled 6 years before the Escort Cosworth was launched. You cannot "Group B prepare" an Escort Cosworth. Also if you're rich enough to afford any stage prepared Cossie, what are you doing driving a £1700 Mondeo?
Oh there's loads more that could be picked apart here. Your claim that a Rover 800 is a better car than a Mondeo for instance, or claiming to have owned a Mercedes SL500 followed by an MG ZS...diesel.