I recently took the car to the mechanic for a periodic full check up. My mechanic volunteered the following unsolicited comment: "I wouldn't think twice about taking this car across country. It is in such a good shape." This experience reflects my feelings about the car and my experience with it: "Not a single real problem in all these twelve plus years!". I chose the car because of (1) its fuel economy, (2) its ample room for either people or for loading shopping, (3) its comfort for unloading or loading because: of low back door and back seat down option, and (4) its sporty look. It turned out that to this I should add (a) its dependability and (b) its reliability.
(A) Fuel economy, (B) Its flexibility to either transport people or shopping loads, furniture, etc., it all fits in!
We purchased our Escort wagon used, with approximately 35K miles, from a local Toyota dealer. It was my wife's daily driver for seven years and it never gave her a problem. Two years ago it became my stepson's car and it continues to be an economical and reliable vehicle. With regular maintenance, a Ford Escort of this vintage will reward you as an economical and fun-to-drive car. Our car has needed the typical replacement items over the years such as brake pads, batteries, plugs, and bulbs. Unfortunately, I also had to replace the heater core recently (which is a monstrous job), marring an otherwise excellent history of reliability. Overall, our Escort has been a great little car.
At 200k+ miles, this ten-yr.-old wagon
still runs like a champ. Apart from
normal maintenance, it has not required
any big-ticket repairs. No frills, but
good heat/AC, good cargo space, and
surprising get-up-and-go. Perfect for
errands around town.