1989 Mercury Tracer Hatchback 1.6L from North America
Super Tracer it just keeps going and going
Timing belts replaced as precaution at 60k, 150k, 320k
Clutch at 175k
Water pump at 320k
Alternator at 225k 350k 351k
Wheel bearings, struts, brakes, and exhaust.
My first brand new car. Needed a good commuter car. Drove it for many years and passed it onto my son. He drove the heck out of it and I gave him a newer car for college. My other son also learned to drive in it, but I am keeping the car as it still gets 40+ miles per gallon when treated right. Uses one quart of oil in 200k. Always starts in the coldest weather and only left me stranded once when the brand new alternator failed.
Heater is inadequate on very cold days. AC was a dealer installed option, but removed after a deer jumped in front of me and totaled the car. Bought it back for $50.00 and replaced hood, grill, radiator, and headlights.
Peppy from 0-60, lots of low end power for a small motor, but very little top end for passing. Rack and pinion steering gives it a point and shoot feel. Takes corners like it's on rails. I am going to try to make it to 400k.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 16th July, 2008
I just picked one up last week with only 22,126 miles on it. ORIGINAL! I am going to keep this car forever... Loved your post.
I recently bought a used 1989 Mercury Tracer for $200.00. It needed a fuel pump, which cost me around $140.00. The car sat since 2004, and runs like a dream. It started right up after the fuel pump was replaced.
It is pushing 300K miles on the motor, but you could never tell it. The oil is clean as a whistle, and you can tell the previous owner really took care of this car. She ended up buying a brand new car after the fuel pump went out in '04, and sold it to the gentleman I bought it from, who purchased it so that he could have a cheap, dependable ride to his work. He didn't fix it because shortly after he bought it from her, his boss gave him a company truck and a gas card. He was originally asking $300.00 for it, which I thought was a steal, but when my husband asked him the lowest price he would take on it and he replied "$200.00" I about squealed in joy.
I used money I won at bingo to buy the car, and it was the smartest and wisest thing that I ever did. The only complaint I have with is is that the gas gauge doesn't work. But I simply use the "20 MPG" as a rule of thumb since I travel in town a lot, and I keep track of how many gallons of gas I put in it, reset the trip counter, and document the miles traveled that way. When in doubt of how much further I can go, I simply refuel. I can live with that.
A very good vehicle indeed, I still have my '89 Tracer, but isn't my primary driver anymore. Other than maintenance items that normally wear out - no major issues. I can't bear to part with it, so I use it as a third wheel for one of those just in case moments. What the heck, it costs so very little to keep. Still love the old chariot at 193,006 miles.