I bought my 93 sedan with 65k on the clock and now have 76k+. I get 40 mpg around town and 48 on the hwy. It is a manual! I'm 6'1" and find the car adequately comfortable for 500+ mile trips to VA from NY state. Plan a trip to see friends in San Antonio TX this winter. The car feels brand new, smells new and the body is sharp. That is great considering all the salt on NY state roads in winter. It handles great in snow with care. Cold or hot weather no problem. Never owned a ford but love this car. My 70 year old mother loves it too. The fold down seats are handy. The insurance rates are great on it. Not flashy but I don't need to prove anything to anyone. I just need to think of a name for her. RUBY?
I have had this car for 7 years and have done nothing to it but routine maintance. A/C still works, all power accessories still work, doesn't smoke or leak oil, still has good power and mileage, interior still looks good.
I was surprised at the reliability of this little car. We actually never had any very major repairs needed - engine and transaxle still going strong at 119000 miles. Problems: timing belt went at EXACTLY 80k miles (give or take a few). Bad thermostat caused fan to come on just before the car ran hot. Suspension took a beating in Boston - 2 sets of tie rods, axles.
This has got to be the best car I have ever owned. Phenomenal reliability and durability, especially for an American made car in the early 90's. Other than brakes and exhaust, this baby has everything else original, and I can't ever remember a time it has refused to start, drive, or generally perform like I wanted it to. Too bad they don't make the Escort any more, as the Focus appears constantly plagued by a slew of problems, both cosmetic and mechanical. If you can find a used Escort anywhere between '92-'99, grab it & hold on to it; you won't regret it.
I bought my car 5 years ago with 77k. Repair work has been very reasonable. It wasn't until the car hit around 150k that the engine needed some work. And within the last year I just had to replace the brake pads and the altenator. But when your car has 170+k you can't complain. This car is the best car anyone in my family has had.