My wife had an accident with her 2000 Cavalier and we needed a car in a hurry. This is what we found. I had poor experiences with Ford in the eighties, but the car had the features, price, and storage for her needs. We have had the car for over 80,000 miles now (we bought it with 79,000) and I must say, this is the most reliable Ford I've ever owned, we've had very little repair work done. It handles nimbly for a wagon and accelerates well. My only gripes are very poor thigh support in the front seats (making drives longer than 90 minutes uncomfortable) and poor gas mileage for a 4-cylinder car (this car gets roughly 25-26 mpg in a 70/30 mix of city/highway driving).
Cabin heater is excellent. It feels sporty to drive even though it's a small wagon, both in handling and acceleration. Plenty of rear storage.
Adding a 5th gear to the automatic transmission would help gas mileage. Redesign of front bucket seats sorely needed for thigh support. 6-disc changer ate several discs; better to have single-disc CD/MP3 player. Moderate brake squeal even after a full brake job. Leather but no heated seats.
I've had electrical sensors, power steering, premature strut failure, funny tire wear, clutch master cylinder and about every other problem known to man. The car gets bad gas mileage for an econo- box at average 24 mpg and I've done better and averaged 29 mpg over the cars life. This is terrible for a car that weighs nothing with a manual. Better luck will be had with any other car.
It was cheap and I didn't have to get a loan for it
Quality, if nothing lasts longer than 60,000 miles you need a better engineer
We bought this car for our son a couple of years ago and we now have 184,000 miles on it. We have had to replace the coil pack, plugs, wires, shocks, front struts, alternator and several small parts, but overall we are 100% satisfied. This car is 8 years old with this many miles on it and still runs great, no oil leaks, no oil burning, etc. This is an economy car that is still economical to own and fun to drive. With this many miles, parts are obviously going to wear, but parts are cheap, the car is easy and inexpensive to repair and it's safe for our son. He was in a serious accident last year and the car held together and protected our son and daughter. We had a body shop get the car back.
Sunroof, tight steering and corners flat, no body roll upon cornering, inexpensive parts
Keep making this car, especially bring back the hatchback!
I have only had this for about a year but have really enjoyed it. We have put new tires and battery but that's it. I have all records from previous owner and as far as I can tell nothing major has ever been done to it. We have done regular oil changes and maintenance. Very impressed with it. I'm actually trying to sell it but only to get a van for traveling. Otherwise I'd keep it.
For a small car it has great cargo space in the back, and great gas mileage.
2002 Ford Focus SE Comfort 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)
I bought this Focus totaled. It has done nothing but run beautifully since I have had it with 90,000. I knew the person who had it before me and she had no problems either. I have 136,000 miles on it and lots more to go!