1988 Ford Tempo GL 2.3 L four cylinder from North America
An inexpensive, easily acquirable, utility automobile
Front shocks were replaced immediately after purchase.
Rear struts were replaced immediately after purchase.
The passenger side front fender was rusted and had to be replaced in order to pass inspection.
The driver's side front fender was rusted out and had to be replaced to pass inspection.
After driving for approximately 14,000 miles, the rear passenger side strut broke and ceased to function.
As a result of the non-functioning rear passenger side strut, the rear passenger side coil spring broke.
The lever to tilt the seat forward (this is a two door model) no longer returns to its original condition on either seat.
The LED display on the FM radio no longer works.
This car is equipped with a lock on the shifter which makes the operator unable to start the car if it is not in either "park" or "neutral." This lock malfunctions occasionally and causes the car to refuse to start even if it is in park.
The heating/air conditioning unit is nearly entirely non-functional with the exception of front and rear defrost which also only produce warm air.
The seals in the modular headlight units have failed which has caused water to leak into the lights. This situation limits the brightness of the lights and makes night driving, particularly in the rain, more difficult than need be.
When the car is braked to a stop, it occasionally stalls. This happens very frequently in the winter and special precautions must be made to keep the car running (ie. applying the brake with the left foot while keeping the idle up with the right foot on the accelerator).
This is a fairly decent car. It stalls fairly frequently and lots of things break on it, but for some reason it starts every time and the first time.
The three speed automatic transmission leaves much to be desired. It accelerates fairly decently, but it just barely keeps up with highway traffic (the speed limit in CT, USA is 65 MPH).
Its ride is what one would expect from a car its size, slightly softer than a compact and slightly rougher than a full size sedan.
One good thing I can say for it is that it handles well in the snow.
The back seat is short on knee room for adults.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 16th July, 2001
Think about what you are saying here... That is an old car, what did you expect?
Of course you will have to do a ton of repairs, in particular if that work has never been done to it before you owned it. If you want more reliability in a vehicle don't buy such an old car. Buy a new one! Don't slam a manufacturer or a car model if it has already been through a war. Remember how old it is and the fact that it has lasted this long is amazing. Years ago a 4 cyl. car would have been beat in a couple of years!