Ford StreetKa Buyer’s Guide
By George Underwood – www.fordownersclub.com
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This nifty little convertible, based on the Ford Ka, was introduced to the UK in 2003.
The engine is an eight valve, 94bhp, 1.6 litre petrol and doesn’t have many problems, although it can use more fuel than comparable cars. The car’s interior is mostly plastic.
The basic model has fabric seats and no air conditioning, but is fairly hard to find these days. You’re more likely to come across the more common Luxury model, which does have air conditioning along with heated leather seats. The special editions are the Red, which unsurprisingly had a red leather interior, and the Winter, which has a six-disc CD player in the dashboard, a colour-keyed hard top, and 16 inch alloy wheels. It’ll take two people and a garage to remove and store the hard top, but you can always go for a manually-operated fabric roof model, which doesn’t have many problems at all.
Common Faults and What to Look Out For
The headlamp units can easily get cracked, and the door handles can often fail, but both are fairly inexpensive to replace at around £80 and £60 respectively. Some models were prone to leaking from the fabric roofs, but this was improved in the very early stages of the car’s history. There are also reported issues with the seatbelts folding and jamming in the shoulder delivery guide.
There’s also a known fault with the front suspension – listen out for a knocking sound, as it indicates that you need to replace the brushes. Additionally, a creaking sound can indicate that the lower arms have worn brushes. These can be replaced for around £40 per side.
One of the most common issues, though, is with the electrics. The engine warning light in particular can be troublesome. If it’s on you might have to get a new coil pack, and it could take a lot of sensor replacements to get it to go out. If you notice a loss of power, failed coil packs might be the reason. Replacement will cost around £100, and you might want to also change the cam sensor if you notice that the car isn’t running as smoothly as it could.
Similarly, both the fold-down roof cover and the boot lid can lead to issues with the alarm and boot access. Luckily, it’s not too expensive to fix a sensor relay fault. It’s also a good idea to make sure that the boot light goes out.
You won’t find a shortage of parts for the StreetKa though, and the simple mechanicals make things easy for those looking to do some home maintenance.