"We bought our 1995 Aspire in 1997 from a local car dealer for 6,500 with 23,000 miles. This car ran flawlessly the entire time we owned it (1997-2005). Other than the usual maintenance, we replaced the driveshafts @ 150K--timing belts (replaced every 75K miles)--that's it!!!! Really great car--great gas mileage even with an automatic/air conditioning. I would LOVE to have another one, providing the owner took as good as care with theirs that we did ours. Sorry to say it met it"s death slowly, but not too painfully--blown head gasket at 285K."
"My Aspire is the toughest car Ive ever had. I bought it 5 years ago for $225. It had 113,000 miles on it. It now has 239,000 miles on it and it still runs fine. Ive had to do some work on it such as new axles, fuel pump, struts, rotors and the regular maintanance stuff like brakes, plugs, wires etc. Its well on its way to 300,000 miles. One negative thing about it is that Ive always had a small electrical problem with the headlights. They'll go dim on me every so often. Other than that Ive definitly got my moneys worth out of this car and plan on keeping it till it dies."
"I purchased this car new back in 1997. I LOVE this car and will be sad when it dies. I paid $7200 new for the car and it has give me 11 years of trouble-free service. Other than routine maintenance, I've only had to replace the backup light switch 2 times and replace a couple of wheel bearings. I'd estimate I've spent under $3K on maintenance over 11 years. You just can't beat that.
The upsides are that the car is still getting excellent gas mileage (35-38 mpg), it's very easy to maintain, it's extremely reliable and it has a very low operating cost.
The downsides is that it can be somewhat uncomfortable on long trips, it doesn't have much get up and go and the car is pretty bare-bones with no A/C. I also had to install my own radio b/c it came only with an AM radio!
I have 109K miles on the car and hope to run it to at least 150K miles. It's a terrific commuter car and can fit an incredible amount inside it for its size.
While the fleet of Aspires is aging (1997 is the last model year), it's totally worth picking up a used one if you're looking for a city runabout that's easy to maintain, is reliable and easy to park!"
"This car was the first car I drove and very fun because it was so small. It was easy to park anywhere I went and its a five seater so there was space in case I needed to drive anyone else. Realistically, however, this car is probably made at most for two people, it becomes inconvenient to drive when you have kids. THe good: its very cheap to maintain and very good on gas, 30 + MPG. Its awesome!"
"I LOVE my 1997 Aspire. I bought it off my boyfriend for $200 in 2005 and it was the best $200 I have ever spent. This car runs like a champ with 130,000, even after hitting a deer with no damage done to the car (but I did kill the deer, can you believe that one!). I have had a few problems like the headlights dimming, one cylinder still not working (so it's only a 3 cylinder now), and having a custom exaust built cause they don't make parts for this car anymore. But all in all I've invested $2000 on routine mantinence and other stuff but I save money in gas. I put $20 in my 8 gallon tank and I go a week and a half without a refill. I get like 37 mpg, it's awesome. If your going to get a car get an Aspire, you will die before the Aspire will."