Probe GT was an experiment
in producing a sport compact car
with the import
market owned by Supras
. It was built jointly with Mazda
, and thus the MX6
is its factory twin
. Both were front wheel drive hatchback
There are 2 generations of the Probe GT. The first is 1989-1992 (which had a 12 valve SOHC, turbo'd inline-4 engine), and the second is 1993-1997 (which had a 24 valve DOHC, naturally aspirated engine). Both were offered with 4 speed automatic (w/ overdrive) or 5 speed manual transmissions.
Specifications can be found in the Ford Probe FAQ located at: http://webcentrix.net/probe/specs.html
...the following is my personal opinion, having owned a 1st generation Probe GT, I feel it has some validity...
I think Ford could have done a much better job. The engine itself was built by Mazda, and on earlier models (referred to as Generation 1) was almost bullet-proof. The periphery surrounding the engine, otoh, was built by Ford, and not very well. Almost all of the problems I've had with my Probe GT have been due to failing engine peripherals. For instance: The turbo (built by IHI, and normaly very high quality) had to be replaced twice that I know of (it's a used car), the primary ignition coil, ignition module, alternator, and a number of very small and expensive coolant bypass hoses have had to be replaced also.
One must wonder by now, "Why do you keep that POS around?" Quite simple: When it does work, it's incredibly fun to drive. Having a turbo, boost controller, custom intake and exhast, 5-speed, and a bumpin' stereo really helps the appeal. That, and the simplicity with which it can beat a Honda Civic Si adds to the fun factor. (note: I live in Southern California, where the rice boys grow)
One last note: Don't ever buy one of these cars older than 1995. Prior to 1995, they had very poor maintenance records. And don't ever buy a used vehicle with any kind of forced induction unless you want to meticulously rebuild and replace every component in that engine bay. Anything less will more than likely end in tears for your pocket book.
Epilogue: It seems this great experiment was not without some fruits. The Ford Focus seems to be doing much better in the sport compact car market after the lessons Ford learned from the Probe GT.