Mine was a 1989, but 1990 was as far back as Edmunds goes! So, my 900S hatchback was the best car I'd ever owned. It was a rustbox.. it spent its life in New England and Syracuse, NY, so road salt had its way with it. But despite the body rot, this thing was a trooper. It never left me stranded, it never leaked oil (until the very end), and all I ever had to do was brakes and exhaust. Can't beat it in the snow, and for quick maneuvers. It has a strange interior, but so damn comfortable. Everything is in its place, and your hands just go where they need to. The clutch is so forgiving, the transmission a tank, and the handling quite solid. It feels like no other car.. so very endearing.
My favorite thing is the way it feels to sit in and drive. It has this little European feel to it that can't be explained. You feel so unbelievably connected to the road. It is kinda bumpy and clunky, but the feedback you feel from the wheel and the clutch and your butt in the seat is unparalleled. Zero degrees of separation, and very responsive pedals. Of course, part of that is the relatively uninsulated cabin, which makes for a raw, loud, sometimes cold or hot ride, but the feeling makes up for it. I also love the loads of space. With the rear seats folded flat, it's like a damn flatbed truck. Two people could sleep in back. Such utility. And looks! Best hatchback ever designed, period.
It doesn't have much torque. I wish I had the turbo (which is insanely fun to drive). At least the transmission kinda makes up for the lack of horsepower. I had the manual, which was geared well for some extra bite in low RPMs, but even the 3-speed auto, while inexplicably weird, does a good job of being punchy. The Clarion sound system is pretty terrible. The A/C seems to be prone to breaking, but mine was fine as I'm sure it had been fixed in the past (it had been converted to 134a). The interior is hilariously loud. The ride is raw and bumpy. It does feel like a roll-cage around you though, like a tank, and it does well in collisions, but it could be less utilitarian. Headliner sucks!
† Edmunds.com received the highest numerical score in the proprietary J.D. Power 2014 Third-Party Automotive Website Evaluation Study℠. Results based on responses from 3,381 responses, measuring 14 companies and measures third-party automotive website usefulness among new and used vehicle shoppers. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of owners surveyed from January 2014. Your experiences may vary. Visit jdpower.com.