I bought my 03 brand new in January 04 with 300 miles on it.
I was 22 and drove it hard...and drove it everywhere.
This car has been on many road trips all over the US, I did not keep up with the scheduled maintenance, aside from oil changes,
I've been in a couple accidents, and I still have had no major problems that I didn't cause myself.
It has almost 200,000 miles on it now. After 7 years, I've only had to replace tie rods and the struts, and I am now having some suspension issues, which I need to get checked out..... but like I said, I was not careful with it at all for a couple years.
If you need a reliable car that gets good mpg, then I would suggest a neon!