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Old 18th September 2008, 10:54   #1
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Post Keen on buying a used Mondeo!!!!

Need your help to decide on a used Mondeo. I have come across a 2002 Black Mondeo Duratec HE model(Petrol). It is put on sale by a used car dealer in Bangalore. It has done 57000kms and the dealer says it is a very well maintained car. It does look very clean from outside though I haven't taken a test drive yet. The dealer claims every gadget and equipment(including the Xenons and Power seats) in the car is in working condition. It has new tyres, CAI and a sports car like exhaust note but don't know if any changes done in the exhaust. The price quoted is 4.5lakhs.

I heard a lot about Mondeo's reliability issues. But I am willing to take the risk, to some extent, for the driving pleasure it offers. I always wanted to own a real car, but couldn't buy one new due to financial constraints. This is the best I could afford now. Before I settled for a Corolla 4 yesrs back, I TD'ed the RS but it was above my already stretched budget. So settled for a Corolla. I am extremely satisfied with my Corolla as a Package but always felt let down by its lack of character(as GTO termed it once). I love driving and always drive my car hard. My corolla's less than 8kpml mileage in city is a reflection of my driving style. This is exactly the reason why I want to buy the Mondeo.

I need your suggestions on the below points,
1) Is the price quoted reasonable?
2) Will the cost and difficulty of maintenance outweigh the Modeo's strength considering it is almost a 7 year old car?

I would appreciate your help.

- Novice.
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Old 18th September 2008, 10:58   #2
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4L seems too much, 2.5L would be good.
Certainly maintenance will outweigh Mondeo's strength at 4L !
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Old 18th September 2008, 12:44   #3
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Mechanically, the Mondeo is okay as long as it is maintained properly. The main problem is due to poor spares availability and dealer support. There were plenty of electronic niggles, namely, the drivers seat and stereo.

If you travel to the UK or have people going there a lot, parts are availalble cheaply. If you have an accident, getting body panels will take years as the dealers do not hold these.

For 3.5L, if in good condition, the Mondy is a steal but be resigned to long days with the car off road awaiting parts.
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Old 18th September 2008, 15:28   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhp1 View Post
4L seems too much, 2.5L would be good.
Certainly maintenance will outweigh Mondeo's strength at 4L !
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
For 3.5L, if in good condition, the Mondy is a steal but be resigned to long days with the car off road awaiting parts.
Thanks guys. I looked at some classifieds(web and print), there are many 2002 Mondeo's on sale. All of them quote above 4lakhs and some even 5l for a car done over 50000kms. I could negotiate to some extent but don't think I could bring down the price below 4l.

Sourcing parts(small ones) from UK shouldn't be a problem.

But how mod friendly is this car? I would want to put a Turbo if I buy it because after driving the Corolla for more than 60k kms, anything slower than it isn't easy to accept. I originally wanted to Turbo my Corolla and saved money for it. When I saved enough money and seriously started looking for a Turbo build, I slowly realized the fact that there is no point in TC'ing a car which doesn't have any road manners. Morever my car is not even equipped with ABS. Hence I dropped that idea and instead use that amt to fund my Mondeo buy and later consider the TC option.

Gurus, Please advice me. I am going to make my decision solely based on your inputs. I guess there some TBHP members who own Mondeos, any suggestions from you guys is highly appreciated.

- Novice.
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Old 18th September 2008, 16:02   #5
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Before taking the plunge, check the availability of spares and A**. As I have read in this forum that the availability of spares is not so great and it may take anywhere between 3~6 months for some parts.
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Old 18th September 2008, 16:12   #6
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Why specifically a used Mondeo? Why not look at the older Accord or other cars?

I've owned a Mondeo, and while it was a quietly competent car in its own right with enough space and comfort + good quality plastics, the build quality (there - I said it!) leaves a lot to be desired with suspension squeaks even on the good roads here, the appearance and disappearance of different noises from different body panels now and then, and also with the body panels with wind noise becoming very pronounced through the panel joints in summer.

Mechanically, you would want to think in terms of Fuel Pumps which tend to give way every now and then, and stuff like brakepads which are of rather poor quality to start with.

Finally there are electrical gremlins which are known to crop up now and again, with the power seats, et al misbehaving without any particular reason. I have personally not had to face these issues, but know of other cars from the same batch as mine that have had a/c, power seat and power mirror issues.

Air conditioning is also not upto the mark in summer.

GIven these, it was a rather entertaining sort of drive with firm suspension (can be an issue in India where you DONT want a firm suspension), excellent high-speed stability and great handling - you can push the car to your limits and it still wont yield. The engine was pretty rorty and rev-happy back then, but times have moved on and there are plenty of machines that offer much more power than the Mondeo did in that time.

If you are looking at a 4 lakh budget, I would recommend that you stay away from the Mondeo as your maintenance costs over a reasonable period of time can turn out to be more than your purchase budget. This is not a car for those who are on a budget.
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Old 18th September 2008, 16:18   #7
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First things first, you are buying a 6 year old car. Thus, the odd issue is to be expected. Only real problem with the Mondeo is the cost and availability of its spares. I hope you understand that this was a 17 lakh rupee car and thus, expected maintenance calculations should be in line with the MRP when new. However, I don't think that the car is going to leave you stranded on the road either. Mondeo's have certain problem areas (e.g. fuel pump, power seats, CD player etc.), but are mechanically strong otherwise. As long as you do your research, check the maintenance records and get suspect parts replaced, you should be all set. @ under 5 lakhs it is a LOT of car for the money.

EDIT : Yup, as Steer said, an Accord will be more reliable + easier on the wallet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bhp1 View Post
4L seems too much, 2.5L would be good.
Certainly maintenance will outweigh Mondeo's strength at 4L !
Give me a break. Which well-maintained Mondeo have you seen selling for 2.5 lakhs?

Last edited by GTO : 18th September 2008 at 16:25.
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Old 18th September 2008, 16:32   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by novice View Post
But how mod friendly is this car? I would want to put a Turbo if I buy it because after driving the Corolla for more than 60k kms, anything slower than it isn't easy to accept.
Why dont you look at used RS where you can up the power to 220BHP with some tweeks/remap?
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Old 18th September 2008, 16:35   #9
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@GTO, it sells for so less because there are no takers for the car. No body wants to invest big amount on scrap.
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Old 18th September 2008, 18:42   #10
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I remember reading about engine mountings to be a problem area in Mondeos
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Old 18th September 2008, 18:55   #11
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Thank you all for your inputs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
EDIT : Yup, as Steer said, an Accord will be more reliable + easier on the wallet.
You mean Accord V6 or the regular one? The one and only reason why I want to buy the Mondy is for its driving dynamics and it is the only true driver's car that one could get below 5lakhs. I believe Accords are not that good in that department. They are big and luxurious cars with powerful engines. The driving experience would be more like that of my Corolla. Infact all Japanese cars available in India fail the test when it comes to driving dynamics. Please correct me if I am wrong.

One other car that interests me is the RS (also Rider TPi) but it is way above my budget at the moment.

I am not looking at Mondeo as a replacement for my existing car. I plan to keep the Corolla for sometime. Mondeo is just to fulfill my thirst for spirited driving. So guess I could live with Mondy's stiff ride and any such problems that won't affect the driver. My only concern is the high cost of maintenance something that everyone seems to highlight.

I am confused. Any inputs from Mondeo owners on this forum? What is the average maintenance cost per year?
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Old 18th September 2008, 21:31   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by novice View Post
I am not looking at Mondeo as a replacement for my existing car. I plan to keep the Corolla for sometime. Mondeo is just to fulfill my thirst for spirited driving. So guess I could live with Mondy's stiff ride and any such problems that won't affect the driver. ?
If you want driving dynamics, there are others that you can consider
Ikon 1.6 Rocam
Fiesta 1.6
SX4
Cedia

All these cars are good, but you can always kick it up a notch by swapping out the suspension with a stiffer coil over kit eibach+koni.
If I was you I'd pick up one of these for cheap and get the suspension completely done up, some sticky rubber and throw in a good racing seat like recaro or corbeau.

Last edited by Mpower : 18th September 2008 at 21:33.
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Old 19th September 2008, 06:18   #13
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A mondeo for 2.5 lakhs,dude you must be dreaming ,and i wonder which car you drive to call a mondeo scrap.
But back to the topic , when you test drive the car novice be sure to redline the car in the first gear to check if the fuel pump is fine, also try to go over some bumps and potholes to see if the suspention is not too noisy,also check the gear shift it should be silky smooth.
Actually there are only a handful of cars that can match the mondeo till now
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Old 19th September 2008, 08:07   #14
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If I remember correctly, there was an edition of overdrive a few years back where several sedans were put to test on a track and the best was RS. But strangely the Corolla performed superb on track and came second ahead of the Accord and other cars. So the dynamics of the corolla is not that bad after all. But if you really want to move on and drive a car with good dynamics you can have a look at an used Cedia or Fiesta. They would be much easier to maintain than the Mondeo. Just my 2 cents..
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Old 19th September 2008, 11:04   #15
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i've personally test driven a 2002 mondeo last sunday being available at toyota used car showroom and the asking price was 2.9 lacs! and still negotiable. The condition of the car was good and each and every part was working properly. The car also had a modified exhaust and 2-DIN high end kenwood player(probably the owner might have dumped the original sony player for its lens problem). The engine was in good condition and the suspension was also holding good. Overall it felt like a solid car but still i went against it because of all the problems described above.

This is one of the best drivers car no doubt but not recommended for spirited driving as this results in more chances of accident or other issues and this will really be a nightmare for you if the car requires body replacement or other parts. Also not really sure how the engine would respond after adding the turbo, as it cud result in some damages to the engine as well. If that happens then you'll have no other option then scraping it. Probably you can research on UK forums for turbocharged mondeos.

You really have good taste of cars but understand that this could lead to lot of problems. Though mondeo has excellent driving charactersitics but still its a segment larger then corolla and hence would demand more care in city or heavy traffic. Spirited driving might be limited to very few roads and highways.

My only suggestion to you after knowing your taste is to save more money and get a used cedia sports version. Believe you me it has excellent handling and you can take it at crazy speeds even while cornering(spirited driving). Its a looker as well and the engine in stock form is as fast as mondeo. Also i feel it wud respond very well to a turbocharger.

Good luck with your hunting!
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