Bought this car 7 months ago, haven't had a problem since, never had to replace anything, sure there are worn out mounts and all, but it's typical. Does 0-60 in 7.8! Cannot say enough good things about the fuel economy. I get 42 mpg on flat highway at 65, and 36 aggressive city mpg. Biggest complaint, the vibration and noise. Tires and/or suspension seem to amplify road noise, engine runs at 2900 rpm at 65 which can get annoying. And wheel hop when accelerating at traction limits is ridiculous. But it has a large comfortable back seat and a very inexpensive car to own. Great little car, wish Ford still made it with a Mazda suspension, Zetec engine, 6 speed and standard power EVERYTHING! Oh and yellow!
Much higher overdrive, liquid filled mounts, 17" wheels, Mazda interior quality, 4 wheel disc brakes, standard power everything, factory high power sound, no speed limiter lol! And of course, to still be in production.
I bought this car used with around 70k miles on it and so far in the past 5 years only have had 1 major break-down ( pullies for the serpentine belt broke)since this is a non-interference engine - no engine damage. Other than that I have had very little trouble (alternator went out and a PC valve - around 120k miles). It is very reliable and starts every time! For a 11 yr old car, it still has power and is fun to drive. The engine has never overheated, even when charging up a hill with the A/C on full blast while it is over 100 degrees outside. I never worry when I have to drive long distances - And a mechanic told me it was a "throw-away car not built to last".
Reliable, well constructed, (no door handles breaking or knobs falling off) and AMAZING gas mileage. Back seat size is fine for me - never get chosen to be the driver on a long road trip with friends!
Ford needs to manufacture them again, with the added feature of an interior trunk release.
I've driven this car for the past 11 years and have had very few problems with it.
It has enough power to be fun to drive, and to get you around slow trucks when you need to, while still getting good gas mileage.
The best thing about it, though, is the amazing amount of cargo space for an economy coupe.
Between the surprisingly roomy trunk, and the fold-down seats, you can actually haul quite a lot of stuff.
I am regularly surprised at how much I can stuff into such a small car.
On top of that, it's one of the best-looking cars in its class, (IMHO), it turns on a dime, and it fits in almost any parking space. The only thing it doesn't do well is snow. But then, what little car does?
Big trunk and large opening to the trunk (for its class).
Tight turning radius.
Gear shift can be a bit persnickety.
Also, the electrical outlet shuts off when you turn off the car, which can be annoying at times.
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