Re: What model year was the first "reliable" Escort
On Wed, 04 Jan 2006 13:04:57 -0500, Tom Adkins
>Backyard Mechanic wrote:
>> "Sharky" <cleighton@NOSPAM.eastlink.ca> wrote:
>>>I had a 1990 1.9L, 3 door, that went 250,000 kms with just normal
>>>maintenance and a timing belt every 100,000 km. It needed a clutch
>>>replacement around 190 k and the head gasket around 220 k, but after
>>>head gasket was replaced, that car ran like a top. Could not ask for a
>>>better winter FWD car, would go anywhere even with all season tires.
>> The first year, 82... unless you count the "premature head gasket
>> failure" I had.
>> Got water-lock and yet after I got it started, drove it thirty miles
>> home, where I pulled the head and changed the gasket...first experience
>> with overhead cam and somehow had no probs. Never a hint of bearing
>> Next failure was a year after I had the Water Pump changed by local shop,
>> when the bearing on the repl WP went out and the valves were trashed.
>> All told had it 5 years and 180,000 miles and no other major repairs.
> Those 82-90 Escorts were actually great little cars. They just wouldn't tolerate
>lack of maintenence, especially the cooling system. It wasn't unusual to see them wih
>150-200K on the clock. Like Sharky said, they were fantastic in snow.
> Many of the head gasket\cracked head failures were caused by overheating due to a
>failed cooling fan temp sender. Running the water pump off the cam belt was a good
>idea, sort of. But it's hard to get people used to the idea that the belt AND the pump
>should be replaced every 40K miles even if they aren't causing a problem.
> In the late 80s-early 90s when these were viable used cars, I would cruise the
>dealer trade in lines and indy used car lots to find the ones with head gasket or
>other problems. They could be had cheap because the dealers didn't want to fix them.
>About $200 in parts and a weekend of work, I could sell the car a week later for a
>nice profit. I probably turned about 50 of them during that time.
When it comes to cheap transportation, NOTHING beats an Escort -
particularly the Mazda based units. My brother's kids all drive
Escorts. His son cracked up the 95 wagon with over 300,000km on it -
after driving the crap out of it for 7 years. Not bad for a $2500 car.
He's got a ZX2 now. Both daughters are driving escorts too. Lowest
insurance cost of any car in Canada.
Definitely lower maintenance than my daughter's Neon.
Being basically a Mazda 323/Protege, and selling for roughly HALF the
price of the Mazda on the 5 year old used market.