1990 Ford Orion Equipe 1.4 from UK and Ireland


Very good, reliable car, and cheap if you live near a scrapyard


Had to buy a new back left wheel bearing; only cost 20 pounds though.

Had to buy a new front indicator and bumper because of a woman in a Land Rover (god, I hate that) hit me. The funny thing is though, it wrote off the new Land Rover, but only broke my indicator! Tough car or what?

Had to buy a new back bumper because it finally cracked off the after previous owner reversed into a post. Must be because of all the ice we are having.

Sprayed all bumpers black now and trims. Cleaned up all paintwork. Not finding any rust.

Fitted Sony CD player and Infinity speakers, front and back (definitely recommended if you like bass, because I ain't got a sub, but all my mates think I have, not bad for forty watts a channel and a bill of 250 pounds; it must be the boot grabbing the sound; a bonus in the car design).

Had its first MoT with me, and only failed on emissions (probably because of the new Bosch Super 4's spark plugs I fitted).

Had my original alloys cleaned by my mate; definitely worth it, it looks great.

General Comments:

This car is quick as standard.

But with only a few mods, it can be even quicker than any Nova I found out.

I only bought this car for 400 pounds, and I'm the third owner.

And in total I have spent only 900 pounds getting it to my tastes, which is £$%&**?@ cheap.

I love the interior; it is so comfortable and spacious, and the sunroof is a BONUS.

Only bad thing is the back end is higher than the front end, so from a side view it looks weird, but hopefully fixing that soon.

Only other drawback is trying to reverse backwards; it is sort of guess work!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 11th December, 2002

1st Sep 2003, 04:58

You sure the Land Rover was written off? I find that very hard to believe...

1990 Ford Orion L 1.3 petrol from UK and Ireland


Cheap, reliable, no-frills motoring. At the time..


Sensor for vacuum timing advance of engine was faulty at purchase. Engine had been detuned to compensate and the fault only became apparent during a service - where it cost nearly £100 to replace.

Water leak in boot traced to failed rubber seal around back window - eventually.

Tilt/slide sunroof mechanism was already seized at purchase. Replaced myself with unit from breakers yard - surprisingly easy to do.

Crank shaft oil seal leaked at purchase. Never got round to fixing it, just kept topping up...

Windscreen washer pump burnt out around 90000 miles, replaced with new unit from dealer.

New clutch about 90000. After they fitted it, the high street garage chain wouldn't give me a warranty with the new clutch. They said the flywheel had imperfections on the bearing surface. I told them where to stick their warranty..

General Comments:

Bought car for a song at auction. Had a few minor niggles then, but all were put right for less than £250, so I was still £££s in. Thereafter I had a fundamentally very reliable (albeit no-frills) motor. It only let me down once in 2 and a half years when the alternator belt snapped and the battery went flat.

It was spacious, relatively comfortable and completely anonymous which was what I needed at the time.

The rattly old 1.3 litre "lawn-mower" engine (still used in Kas and Fiestas I believe) coped admirably with the car's size and seemed destined to keep going beyond the 113000 miles at which we parted company. Key to this, I'm sure, was my routine engine top-half strip down and tune up ever 7-8000 miles or so because I used the car to commute long distances every day. This would provide the perfect opportunity to have the tappets adjusted and quieten down that rattly engine.

Mechanically it was a sound and sturdy, sailing through it's MOTs easily, requiring only silly things like wiper-blades and rear numberplate bulbs. The bodywork was mostly sound up to when I sold the car though some blistering due to stone-chips was evident on the bonnet.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th October, 2002