I got it from my parents who got it off my grandparents, in my opinion a great little grandma/grandpa car where you don't drive it a ton. Things I fixed in the last two years: tie rods, struts, brakes, valve cover gasket, fuel pump (long story there) headlight switch, oil pan leaks, head gasket leaks. In all honesty it was an ok car (it drove the Alaska highway round trip and spent a few years up there) it did leave me stranded multiple times before anyone figured out it was the fuel pump, which shook my confidence in it, lots of little things on the blink, the headlight switch keeps leaving all the lights on even after replacing it. 144k mi, time for a trade and a little Peace of mind.
On the whole my experience with the Tempo has been a pleasant one. The exterior styling is clean but on the bland side. Fuel economy has averaged 25 miles per gallon, good but not terrific. Inside everything is comfortable and well laid out. Taller drivers might find it a bit cozy. On the performance side, acceleration with the four banger is adequate but not likely to raise your heart rate. It seems the transmission has no idea what to do when you stomp on the gas until it has thought everything out for several moments. The Tempo handles securely but take it slow through the twisties. Over all, the Ford Tempo's greatest strength is in low cost basic transportation.
Hi all. I bought this car with 140K on it two years ago. What can I say - if you expect this car to be a lot of fun then don't buy it. The only advantage of this car is its price. Don't hope for high mpg - it consumes gasoline in large amounts. 3 speed automatic is paired nicely with a low-end torque 4 cylinder engine. Probably this is the reason why the transmission survives that long. The car overall is quite reliable if maintained properly. So, my conclusion is: if you need a bit just a mean of transportation from A to B and you never drive at high speeds - then this is a car for you. Otherwise, steer clear away it.
So far I've had to get the brakes done
twice, a new clutch, tie rods, struts,
and wheel bearings. And it STILL has
front end problems! The engine rattles
and the heater is lukewarm. The horn
only works if you turn the wheel about
90 degrees to the left. The headlights
are dim. It's uncomfortable-very little
legroom & no tilt wheel so you have to
squeeze yourself into it. And the
cupholder's under the dash console &
behind the gear shift. It handles like
a snowplow and is scary to drive in the
winter (if it starts). I hate this car.