It is a generally a well made car. I performed most of the fluid/filter change maintenance myself. The stock battery is too tiny, with the tiny alternator so got to watch out if you don't drive the car often or has a low mileage local commute. Cold start clutch shuddering is a well known "feature", and a hard to get in reverse gear. I have been stuck in city street trying to make u-turn because could not get in reverse. At 34k miles now the car desperately need the brake fluid change and a tune up. The really bad thing is the resale value comparably low but the car is a really good car, very reliable. Paint chips very easily. 3k miles synthetic oil change can be very troublesome and expensive, but is a must.
Reliability, mod-friendly, safe.
Back in 02 only a handful of mechanics know how to work on these cars, very easy to ruin if not properly modded. 5k instead of 3k miles change, fix the turbo lag, better brake feel. Smaller steering wheel, better turning ratio. Consider wide body on the wagon model. And better trade in value.