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Ford Escort ZX2



  • rickgonzrickgonz Posts: 87
    I would not personally want to restore one of those older sports cars. If it doesn't run, I'm leery of it. Also I am a bit more practical now, wanting heat and A/C in a car.

    Older cars will need some body repair work to replace rusted sheet metal parts. Those replacement parts are available and made by specialist companies. Then the seats, top, suspension. And the engine will definitely require some work.

    A friend of mine from NJ had a Triumph sitting in his garage for 5 years. I think he finally sold it off 'as is' after much nagging from his wife. He had put in a lot of money in to the engine, had not gotten around to body repair and paint yet.

    Although not in the same category, I had an old Renault 4L back in Manila which I intended to restore, but alas a couple of thousand dollars later had it towed away as I could no longer afford to keep sinking money into it.

    Probably better value as an everyday driver would be the Mercury Capri convertible. It would be cheap to drive and maintain. However, wouldn't expect it to be any kind of performance car as it was tested against the Miata by the car mags. It lost on all counts: acceleration, slalom, comfort, etc.

    It doesn't share much with the ZX2 beyond the chassis, but they're both based on the Mazda 323 platform.

    Oh yeah, my car's dark blue but nothing else to distinguish it. Can't remember exactly what Ford calls that color. I haven't modified the car at all, not even the wheels/tires. But I've seen lots of ZX2s around Loudoun, most of them driven by 30-something women.
  • ralex2ralex2 Posts: 287
    I know Ford aimed the Z at college age females, but I see mostly thirty something women driving them. I suspect most are second cars and the wife gets it. There are a few college males driving lightly modified Zs, but not many.. According to the local Ford dealers, they are all automatics. The dealers just don't want a 5 speed on the lot - hard enough to sell with an automatic. How old are the Gen X folks now? That's what the "X" in ZX2 supposedly stands for. I have forgotten who is included in Generation X, probably because I'm mch closer to Generation B. Floridian may be an A. : )
  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    Oh the joys of a failing DSL provider... Occasional drops in service, the hell of trying to get my E-mails, lost pages. Could life get any better?

    At any pardon my little bit of venting...
    I agree Rick the Fantasy of restoring an old car versus the Reality are two quite different things. As your friend and others have indirectly remarked here it takes quite a bit of dedication and commitment. Without question far more than I am likely to have.

    I suspect a more practical idea would be buy Camaro as my general sports car, grab up a high milieage used mini freighter, for the occasional Pc monitor. Then follow Ralex's example and start turning my ZX2 into an s/r. Now does that make sense? Damn I think I just spent about $40 Grand!!! I think I need to rethink this or get a $20 per hour raise. But then I could probably afford that two bedroom one den Townhouse.

    ah the insanity of it all!!!
  • ralex2ralex2 Posts: 287

    Marry a girl with a Navigator and a house. Trade the ZX2 in on a Miata. Let her make the payments, and ... oh yes . . . .tell her you love her.
  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    The only problem is the Girl I am currently dating is too young for anything serious. She is in fact an East German (yes some still refer to that region by that name) is on a temporary visa and she has her eyes on my ZX2. The first time I took her out in it she was a buzz with all the techno facts about sports cars.

    I just wish it could last a little longer with this girl, but it all ends on August 28th when she goes back home for good. Ah well that body does make an older fellow smile and for a couple months at least I can be happy. She really is a charmer a looker, a brain, and sadly for me only barely an adult.

    It is interesting to hear though that the Miata and the ZX2 share a lineage with the Mazda 323 (also know as the GLC in it's first US incarnation). This is something I did not know. One of my first cars was a Mazda GLC. At one point just before I went back to England to join the services of the crown. I dated a West German girl on a similiar visa program to the one I am seeing now. Then as now I started seeing her just a few months before she went back. A bizzare coincidence or what? So hear again in my strange life I have gone the full circle. One of my first cars, a strange relationship with a German girl on a preset time limit... Flip forward 15 years later... An indirect relative of that car, a relationship with a German girl on a preset time limit.

    Whats next another tour of Beirut??? thanks no 3 tours was more than enough for me... Besides the 18 weeks of basic, and 36 weeks of regimental training I went through would probably kill me this time through. Which is of course what those sadistic $%$#% tried to do to me the first time around 15 years ago. An American Accented Brit in the British Army is a natural target.

    Damn it I am in a way too serious mood tonight (this morning). I guess it must be the Guiness (way too heavy for this heat).
  • freddy_kfreddy_k Posts: 376
    Just got back from a tour through Israel. About the only thing I missed from home was my car. It was my first time off this contenant and really cool. er- hot. Anyway cars are a fortune there so it really is a land of econo cars, but because of that there are some pretty funky ones on the roads, and some I'm sure would sell well over here, and maybe draw people away from the mighty cavalier.

    Anyway, photog, from what I understand the ZX2 was a pretty last minute design and there really isn't much in the way of concepts.

    For the convertable ZX2 - no thank you. Ever driven a sunfire convertable? I love the idea of a convertable, hence my almost impatient waiting for my miata next year, but I wouldn't want a cheap half [non-permissible content removed]ed one, which is exactly what it would end up being. From roof to stability I doubt they would be able to make it work right and still keep the price respectable. Maybe some T-tops though...

    One last thing, Ford owns the majority of Mazda but I believe mazda is still in charge of their little roadster. If I am wrong about this please don't tell me, I'd rather remain igorant ;-)
  • ralex2ralex2 Posts: 287
    There was a time, when convertibles were heavier than coupes. The roof adds strength to a car and without it, extra cross members were added to the frame to eliminate twist. With unibody construction, I'm not sure how the strength is regained. Not sure I want to find out.
  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    I am hoping to get back to Isreal next year. My brother in fact lives there. Though I am not Jewish he married an Isreali and the rest as they say is history. Not surprisingly I know the region rather well..

    I agree a convertible ZX2 may not be practical; however it would be a neat car to see as a convertible. I have heard in the past that the best convertibles are those that are designed for the very same reasons Ralex described. The Miata despite it's strange shared lineage it has with the ZX2 and a car from my past; it was designed as a convertible from the ground up.

    Sorry Freddy and everyone else who read my last posting. After reading it just now I realized how inane it sounded. Blame it on the Stout, I was drinking one thing is for sure. Much as I love Stout in warm, even air conditioned weather it goes straight to my head. At least now people can see why I don't drink very much.
  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    My dear old Dad, went and got a Nissan Maxima. Not really a bad car actually. I took it for a drive around the block, and about the only gripe I could level against it was the softness of the ride. Personally I like to be able to feel the road rather than just glide over the road. The seats where fantastic though. They really held my body well. I also liked the logical instrumentation. Very easy to see where everything is. When I get my around to it I will shoot some shots of it and post them on my web pages.
  • floridianfloridian Posts: 219
    photog: well, I did the "dirty deed" and bought a 2001 Tiburon. Being a diehard ZXer my son really got on my case (all in good fun you realize)and if it had not been father's day he probably would not have taken me to "Hooters" for lunch LOL ! Anyway, all is forgiven but I see a serious drag race up at Gainesville Raceway some friday nite between his ZX and my new "TIBBY" Stay tuned.

  • freddy_kfreddy_k Posts: 376
    I think the Maxima is a great car. My grandfather has the sport suspension package and i5 spd., it really has a nice feel to it, and great steering. If I were forced to get a mid sized sedan, the Maxima with the sport options would be it, though topped out in options it gets pretty pricey.

    floridian: wish your son good luck for me! ;-)
  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    I had a customer in my shop today (yesterday) who claims he spent several thousand on his Spitfire 4. He also owns a Miata and the late great RX7. His only gripe with the Spitfire beyond the money he spent rebuilding is the obvious reliabilty. It truly was a lovely example of a terrific restoration.

    One thing that is kind of strange about my Dads new sedan is that in length it doesn't seem that much longer than my ZX2. Granted it obviously is however when they are parked side by side it sure doesn't look that much longer. I know he doesn't have the sports package on his and it does have cloth rather than leather seats. However it does seem pretty loaded with options.

    I don't mind the Tib so much as I can't get comfortable in the damned things. In most every regard the Tib is superior to our beloved ZX2s. However the dash didn't seem logical, and for the life of me I couldn't get me head clear of the sunroof. I also wasnt too crazy about the visibilty. To be fair though this may have been caused by the funny angle the seat was in to clear the sun roof lip. On the positives for the tib, better tires smoother Acceleration, a few more HPs, better suspension and marginaly better seats. There is also far more useable space in the design than the ZX2. By the way don't be surprised if your Tiberion thrashes the ZX2. THey measurable faster cars, off the mark. PArtly due to the tires and in part due to the engine.
  • floridianfloridian Posts: 219
    photog: My Tib "feels" faster to me but it's hard to tell as #1 has tweeked his ZX a little in the form of a cat-back exhaust, hot pack coil, K&N type intake and a some sort of air flow sensor modification. The Tib has more HP in stock form but is heavier. His ZX is A/T so that's probably a wash between the two. I think the difference will be in the drivers ability to get off the line quickest. Reaction time will be in his favor as "old dad" is not the "boy racer" he once was LOL. We'll see . Mom , by the way thinks we both are nuts !! LOL

  • freddy_kfreddy_k Posts: 376
    tib is markedly faster? It certainly didn't feel it, even in the 5 spd, and from 0-60 times I've read up on it is typically slower. In a stoplight race I would confidently take on a tib.

    I've absolutely got to disagree with that whole statement. These cars are extremely close and comparible. In the tib, the seats and driving position are better, and the brakes are a bit better and not nearly as mushy, and like every other car the engine is smoother then the Z - In what sense is the suspension better? how else would you say it's superior? I'm just curious because I guess the tib never impressed me like that.

    I won't go into the material quality of the tib.
  • ralex2ralex2 Posts: 287
    I'm with Freddy on this one Photog. The Z is a hair quicker 0 -60. The Tibs extra weight (only 200 lb or less) seems to eat up the extra 20 ponies. I wonder if the Tib has a taller gear ratio? Probably does. Floridian's estimation that it will be very close is probably very accurate, but my money is on the Z. I think Hyundai stole, or borrowed the Tib's suspension geometry from Lotus or Jag and it is quite good on paper. The Z is better than you think - held back by junk tires. Let's all get toghether at the Grill for a burger and then go race 'em. : )
  • floridianfloridian Posts: 219
    I said the Tib "feels" faster. Only the timing lights will tell for sure. For instance, after a couple of days driving my Sonoma 4 cyl A/T ANYTHING feels like a rocket! LOL. It'll be a couple weeks before we can duke it out @ Gainesville. If I don't beat the #1 son at least once I'll never hear the end of it for sure.

  • photog0264photog0264 Posts: 314
    I was under the impression that the Tib was markedly faster. As it seems I maybe under some paper illusions. I am thinking now I might run over to Manassas Hyundai some time soon, and test drive one again (only without the Sunroof). It's obvious I will have to do some more research before I glue my foot to my mouth again. Given how quick everyone has been to correct me...

    The suspension on the one AND ONLY ONE I drove did feel more "reactive". I do know the ergonimics left me cold, in fact that was one of things that I remember most clearly. THe visibilty was also somewhat troubling to me...

    In other worlds, I have heard the engine performance is no where near as efficient as our beloved ZX2s. In particular it's inabilty to get the most of it's higher HP.

    I will keep mute on the Tibs specs until I can again test drive and check out the specs again.

    Well at least I woke everyone up...
  • floridianfloridian Posts: 219
    off subject a little but I have been meaning to ask you if while in the British Army if it was a ranger outfit ? On a trip to Gibralter from Morocco across the straits while stationed there we saw a British Ranger brigade go thru some close order drill, very impressive !! Also have you ever seen the British demo team that takes down the gun carrages, carries them over obstacles and reassembles them again in VERY short order. I think they were Navy. They also put on rat line climbing, hoisting sails demos etc. I think they used to travel all around the world putting on these shows but I've never seen them in the States.

  • eweygrineweygrin Posts: 33
    My mother in law is giving some serious thought about buying an 01 ZX2. SHe does not have much money and is on a limited budget.m I went with her to dealer this weekend. It seems like you get a lot for the money withthese cars. THere is a 1,500 rebate right now. Are these cars going to be discontinued soon? Salesperson claims they will be around for 2002. Please enlighten me.

    Anyone have a regret about these cars. She is also looking at Focus but costs 3,000 more.
  • tsulltsull Posts: 1
    I'm considering purchasing a ZX2. Would appreciate any information on reliability as well as safety. Crash test ratings are missing for frontal crash and side rating is mixed. Any further infomation? Thanks.
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