First all, cars of one kind break the same. I'm a Chrysler mechanic and see it daily.
The wire sets last twice as long as the service interval, which is actually pretty good.
The brakes aren't much of a problem, but the factory rotors are... once I got rid of them I got another 100k and going from the new ones.
The dash is very susceptible to high temperatures. As soon as I moved to Texas, it warped on the first summer... had no problems in New England.
I have regularly serviced the fluids and had no major leaks issues or problems.
This cars biggest cost is brakes so far, and they are easily corrected by someone with a low mechanical skill.
After working on American cars, I feel I have gotten twice the use out of this vehicle than the average Neon, Cavalier, or Contour.
I myself am a mechanic and don't like to mess with my own car... all I've really done to this is maintenance and would readily buy another... when purchased new and kept up they do last... if in a hot climate, I recommend tint and never fully shut all windows...