I'd buy a brand new one today if they were still made like this
3rd gear burnt out.
I replaced the clutch 2 times.
Ball joints on the front went bad. This requires the control arms to be replaced.
Engine smoked briefly when started each morning.
Motor mount broke.
This car has been the most reliable vehicle I've ever owned. When I list every problem I've experienced, they seem to add up, but over the course of 6 years, I drove this car 121,000 miles and only had to do one major repair (I installed a used transmission, new clutch and control arms). The parts cost about $300 and the job took about 10 hours.
I live in Minnesota, so I painted it almost immediately after purchase to keep the salt off the cracked paint.
I bought it for $1500 and probably put half that amount into maintenance over the six years I drove it (repairs, tires, battery, paint, etc).
It started in below zero weather and handled snow better than my wife's '98 Volvo S70. It got about 33mpg when I bought it, which decreased to about 26mpg by the time I finally sold it to a friend last month. It still runs and drives great. I love this car.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 27th October, 2008