Product Type: Ford cars
Newest Review: ... 27 year old with an SP30 £60 fine living in a medium risk area with the car garaged: A 1994 Escort Cosworth Luxury valued at £12000 with... more
My experiences with the Escort Cosworth
Ford Escort Cosworth
Member Name: 137699
Ford Escort Cosworth
Date: 16/10/02, updated on 16/10/02 (1986 review reads)
Advantages: Image, Performance, Practicality
Disadvantages: Expensive to maintain, Difficult to source parts, Suspect Reliability on earlier models
1994 Lux Model (big turbo)
I owned this car from 1997-2000. It was a lux model, but did not have aircon or leather. It did however have elec windows, mirrors, central locking, heated screens etc., which set it apart from the standard model. I paid £19,000 for the car from a Ford RS dealer, and it had covered 20,000 miles when I bought it. It was my first performance car, and the first shock came quickly. I'd had it about 3 months, when I got a problem with a major electrical fuse blowing - 2 weeks at the local Ford RS dealer and £350 later, they traced it to be a faulty output from the engine control module. I had intermittent cold-start problems during every winter, until around 1999 when things came to a head and it started to misfire on me badly under heavy accelleration. This time, it was a £500 task to discover how/why damp was constantly getting into the ignition system. The other main thing that went wrong was the Ford immobilisor, which I was quoted £650 to replace, but decided to have it removed instead (for £90) as there was also a Clifford system on-board. When I sold it (in 2000 for £10500) it had covered 75,000 miles, and the engine was beginning to sound a little noisy and tappety. It had always been to Ford for every service, but I later learned that they use a fully-synthetic oil rated at 0W/40, when in actual fact the engine runs much better on 15W/60 oil.
1995 Lux Model (small turbo)
I owned this car from 2001-2002. It was also a lux model, but with the later spec small turbocharger which made the car more responsive. This one also had aircon - which is a must, because when yo
u come to sell the car later, you'll find that any examples without aircon are much harder to shift - look how much money I lost on my first one!!! I paid £14,000 for the car privately, and it had covered 33,000 miles. Having had plenty of bad experiences with the large turbo model, I paid particular attention to how this car cold started before I purchased it. All in all, this car was a dream in comparison. Never did it backfire, nor did it have any cold start issues. The only thing that went wrong was that it started to lose power because one of the cat's had gone, but I got a cheap 2nd hand replacement (£50) and it was fine again. So good was this car that I had it converted to stage 1 - 260bhp, which makes a difference, but you soon get used to the extra power! When I sold it, it had done 60,000 miles, and I got back £12,000 - as I said having the aircon makes a big difference.
All in all, to summarise owning these vehicles you should consider the following points:
- The big turbo model is easier to tune, but is not a particularly sorted car. The later small turbo ones incoroporate many relaibility fixes which were found to be problems on the earlier engines.
- Go for as many luxuries as you can afford. Standard/motorsport cars, or lux's without leather/aircon do not fetch as much money when you come to sell them.
- Budget a lot for servicing and repairs. Some parts are shared with the standard escort (eg £3 for an oil filter), but the bits that are specialist are very expensive eg: set of spark plugs £40, HT leads £120, 5l motorsport oil £35, front wing £275, tyres £140 each, front air splitter assembly £400+.
- Also bear in mind that parts are getting harder to come by. These cars are getting old, things go wrong, and the Ford dealers rarely stock any part you need. If they have to order them you may find that they no longer exist, in which case you need to look for a model being scrapped (Golddust) or if one exists, fit an
aftermarket part which may not be reliable.
- Keep it in the garage - especially the earlier model ones. They don't like the damp, or the elements, and if kept garaged, will not let you down.
What I would say, is that they are a remarkably practical car to own - both of mine have operated as my main vehicle. They have a pretty good sized boot (not quite as big as standard Escort), seat 4 adults in relative comfort, return reasonable fuel economy, up to 350 miles to the tank (providing you don't get it converted!), and are relatively quiet inside the cabin, until you replace the standard Ford exhaust with a performance one! They are also comfortable to drive on long journeys. They are fantastically built, I have yet to see any rust on even an early 1992/3 model, and everything is screwed together impeccably. And, although they may be every car thief's dream, the average mug on the street does not bother with them, as they have so many anti-theft devices and immobilisors, that only the professional theif will take any notice.