Had to replace the front offside CV joint as expected when the wheels started clicking while cornering.
Eventually had to replace the exhaust center box and rear silencer as the holes were too big to continue patching. This was the first replacement of its life, so not bad for 75k. Something to check out for when buying used though.
Replaced front nearside wishbone and arms, then re-replaced both front arm/steering bushes assembly 5 months later.
Replaced fuel filer, as the car had hesitant acceleration.
Replaced cam-belt at 76k.
The car isn't too great on handling, after time the steering grew increasingly loose, due to tracking and steering arms - these had to be fixed.
Also no ABS on this model, can skid in the wet.
Servicing isn't all that cheap.
Tires are showing uneven wear possibly due to persistent bad tracking..
Starting can be a bit of an issue, I needed to press the gas a little during turn-over to get it going. This was even though the injectors were cleaned.
After a while the car used to stall at idle - this was due to a dirty throttle body. The garage cleaned this in April04 which seemed to cure it for a while, but erratic revs while idle seems to have come back by September.
Economy isn't great, not sure about the MPG, but usually get about 185miles average from a full tank.
Overly high insurance grouping, seeing as its not a performance/sports car.
On the plus side, parts are cheap, but the real cost is labor unless you are prepared and competent to do maintenance yourself the whole time. Little things seem to go wrong quite regularly, but may not be an issue if you can live with it until a major service and get it all fixed in one go.
Stuff like faulty headlight stalk - which would cause the full beam to accidentally stay on when using the indicators etc..
You get used to driving the car a certain way to compensate for these things though.
The clutch is on its way out, and crunches when shifting to reverse from neutral. 1st and 2nd are harder to get into as they are most used. However it's a 12 year old Ford...
On the positive side, it doesn't look like a '92 model. Still looks good and It's pretty solid.
There is NO rust, and the black metallic polishes up nicely.
No electrical problems apart from the stereo (my fault- lazy wiring!)
Being an 1.8i it can shift... theres no problems in doing 110+ on the motorway..
This was my second car, after the 1990 Polo I owned for 4 months prior. Can't really compare; VW was mechanically unbreakable, but suffered from rust and dodgy door locks.
The Orion looks the business especially with the usual Ghia refinements.