I see 2002 Ford Escorts for sale pretty commonly. They're a tempting
proposition, because I remember the 90s Escort having a pretty good
reliability history, especially the ones starting with the 1997 redesign
(and even the 91-96 models to SOME extent).
The thing is, though, officially, in 2000 the Escort was replaced by the
Ford Focus. If that is so, how come I keep seeing 2001 & 2002 Ford Escorts
for sale? Were they special models for the car rentals or something?
The ZX2 inherited the Escort legacy from Ford. From what I've read
about them, the first ZX2 models still had the "Escort" emblem or logo
attached to the body, but this was slowly phased out over the years to
shake off or differentiate the ZX2 from the Escort.
So the later models you are referring to don't have any "Escort"
markings anymore, but are still direct ancestors.
Probably rentals yes. Perhaps Ford has some contractual obligations
with some fleet customers they had to fulfill. I've seen them as well
online at used car sites.
I had actually considered replacing my 1990 Escort GT with one of those
used 2002 ZX2s, but still driving it. Talk about reliable...
AFAIK, Ford is still making the 97 and up model Escort to rental fleets
only. They're all automatics, therefore. They're fantastic cars. In fact,
the 97 that I owned was the most troublefree car I've ever had -- bar none.
Although the Focus did indeed replace the escort, they were sold side by
side through the 2003 model year, and were offered as manual or automatic;
the ZX2 label was just eye candy; it was still an escort. I bought my '95
excort new, and with 125,000 miles, still runs great.
The later model sedans (>1999) were either fleet or rental cars and were
finally discontinued in 2002. Other than some nuisance issues (and be SURE
to check that the rear springs haven't broken), they're very good cars.
Of course, the ZX2 coupe is still around but will probably be retired soon
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