I have had this car for 5 years now and have 193,000 miles on and still climbing. Have some problems with the transmission occassionally. there is wind sound when driving fast. Also the A/C cuts out occassionally. Overall it drives and handles very well. Very few maintenance problems since I bought it used. I have put on about 80,000 miles. Highly reccommended.
We are trying to decide whether to commit to new tires, but the 1993 Mercury Tracer seems to be running fine after turning over 200k miles. Minor problems, seat belt return doesn't stop seat belt in an easily accessible location anymore. Heater fan and vent system isn't as functional as it used to be. The floor is rusting. This car was in a garage for the first 5-7 years.
The biggest problem i've had over the 11 years i've had this car would be that at about 100,000, the engine just flat out broke. it started to stall and i had to buy a whole new engine. but besides that it has been pretty reliable. the transmission is little shabby though, it never seems to shift when it should. the wagon still seems to have taken all the punishment i've dealt it though. in general this car isn't too bad, it certainly takes alot of punishment.
This car has proven an excetional value. Extreme reliabilty , fit and finish. This little car seems to run "forever". Excellent ride, easy to work on, durable and quiet. We have owned this car for 16 years. We wverage 30 to 33 mpq. This is a 5 speed.
Driving and owning this car was a delight. Sadly, after only 18 months of owning it, the reliability proved me wrong. The motor started to load up really bad after I used the a/c (would using the a/c take away engine power?)and it just died on me on the side of the road!! I loved my little wagon and so did my family. Problem was dropped valve and a cracked piston! My mechanic said it just wasn't worth fixing, so now it sits in a junkyard. They say the trannys have problems at around 80-90K miles. Mine hit 170,000 and no tranny issues at all! Some are good, some not. Purchasing another one come tax time! Besides the problem I had, I would very much recommend these inexpensive cars.