Owned this car for 11 years. I purchased car used as a dealer demo with 7K on it. At first thought I had a lemon, door trim peeled off, radio broke, O2 sensor went and a sway bar linkage broke, thankfully all under warranty. Now in its 12th year the car has given up the ghost and is a rolling zombie that refuses to die! This year had to replace the CV boot and axle (my fault regular maintenance would have spotted cracked boot and saved me $), the oil pan rusted out, front struts gone, check engine light is on, exhaust almost rusted out and engine leaking oil from a gasket. Saying all this I still loved it. Has out lived all my other cars and cost the least in maintenance.
Now the family beater, used for light duties and will do so until it finally decides to die. Next car will be a Mazda.
I bought my car four years ago with a little over 70,000 miles on it. In that time, the only big repair I've had to make is replacing the axles due to the CV boots, which were busted when I bought it. Other repairs were minor, including new spark plugs, plug wires, new battery, and a valve cover gasket. Regular maintenance has kept it on the road and relatively problem- free. I trust it to get me to work and back and to occasionally drive almost the full length of Texas and back, which I've done a few times now. The car isn't sexy, but the looks have held up for close to ten years now. Not fun to drive because of the 4 cyl engine. It's just a tool to get from A to B, and it's done it well.
The fold-down rear seat allowed me to pack lots of big parts in the car and shave bundles on oversize shipping as I've been restoring a '66 Mustang in my spare time. It's been a life-saver on out-of-state parts runs.
The turning radius is terrible. Parking and maneuvering in a tight parking lot is sometimes a little harder than it should be.
I bought this car from kee max several years ago, the engine blew before I made it home (less than 15 miles). Kee max buys cars from auction and puts them directly on their lot. After spending approx $2500 on a new engine, this car keeps going and going. It now has over 144,000 miles and still going strong.
From an appearance standpoint, this generation has the best lines compared to previous 626s, and the interior has an inviting look to it, plus it's roomy and comfortable with a great stereo. If you want a car full of high- tech toys, you'll be disappointed. The luxury/power features this model has (ES-V6) have been in luxury cars since the '80s. Reliability is good, except the radiator needed replacement @ 110K. I've heard complaints about the transmission but so far I've had no issues with it @ 156K. The V-6 runs horribly on 87 octane, it needs at least 89. I'm getting clunking from the rear suspension, most likely bushings/struts needs replacing.
Great looks and paint color (maroon), '80s "retro" appeal, oscillating air vents, electric sunroof, Bose stereo, leather, folding rear seats, roomy passenger cabin and trunk.
Cooling system, V-6 should run better on 87, front seat headrests are too small.
Ok where do I start I bought the car for 4500 and I have put that much into repairing the darn thing. Tranny went out at 117,000 water pump and timing belt at 118,000 2 radiator resivours had bad seals and coolant leaked through. Brakes needed to be done @ 115,000. The car just fell apart right after I bought it and I would never even consider Mazda again for a future car in any model at all. They are cheeply made and also the tranny is a Ford tranny. Umm Mazda car with Ford tranny? tranny has been known to fail in these cars but Mazda says nothing about it and has no recalls on it. Ford and Mazda will never receive any future purchases from me ever
Umm honestly nothing the tranny is badly timed it takes a few seconds to get it into gear and it jerks when it shifts even after new tranny rebuild. Its just not worth the time or money to buy this car
No Ford tranny if it has known to fail in over 40% of the 626 line. Recall of all trannys to be replaced before you get seriously injured