When I bought this vehicle it had 84k miles on it and now it has almost 170k. It has lasted me through college and is still going and I have never had any major problems. It is starting to show it's age, paint is starting to peel in places, but it's never let me down and actually handles great in the snow. The 2.5 Liter engine is very good quality but I can't speak for the others.
I bought this car in 1991 and have driven it for over 12 years. Repairs have been been minor and very few. Maintenance is easy to do myself and the parts are standard and not expensive. This is without a doubt the most reliable car I have ever owned, and has certainly been a good value. I keep thinking that I will trade it in when it dies but it just keeps on running great. I can still do 75 mph on the highway and it still gets 24 mpg driving around town.
Purchased the Car at 70,000. Parked it at 250,000 miles. Great car at 27- 30mpg. Temp was a problem on this 4 cyl. Suggest changing to a 3rd party radiator, all heating and cooling problems stopped. Had to replace head gasket and air conditioner due to high temp. Replace the radiator and this car will run forever at 75. Use injector cleaner to improve gas mileage. I would not consider a 6 cyl.
We bought the car as a demo car, back a long time ago. 10 years later, the car still runs great. Its not perfect, we've had a few things go wrong over the years. But what do you expect for an inexpensive basic car? The number of things to go wrong has been I think below average for a car with 200,000 miles on it.
I bought my 1991 6 cyl ES as a work car and found it to be the best I ever had. I still use it as a fun car after 250,000 miles. Guess what - I went out and bought a beautiful 1992 Spirit as its replacement! Sadly I wrecked it in the rain - but it saved my life - solidly built machine. I'm currently looking for a 94-96 Spirit to replace it. My opinion -if you see one - buy it!