Car of the past for the future. - BMDUBYA
If you like to buy and run older cars, I'm thinking in the region of, L(93/94), M(94/95) and N(95/96) with something around 100K miles for around £1000, and you would like the following qualities
1). A workhorse.
2). Reasonably good styling.
3). Reliable and good to run for another 100K.

In my opinion, and I am pleased to be corrected, there are a few cars that stand out from the rest of the pack. Ones that come to mind are Cavalier, Mondeo, Astra, Escort, Rover 200/400. (I'm sure there are others)

My questions are:-

1). Taking into account the problems with cars like the Vectra , you know its true Dave:-). In 8 - 10 years, what cars would you recommend and have stood the test of time?

2). Do you think that the new technology like the common Rail diesel engines will 'go the distance'?

Remember, these must be cars that you will use and put another 100K on the clock, and not to restore as classics.
Car of the past for the future. - Baskerville
At that age I'd go for just about anything with the old PSA Peugeot/Citroen XUD diesel engine, in non-turbo or turbo form. PSA cars from that era don't rust, are more refined than the equivalent Fords and Vauxhalls, handle better, and have very robust mechanicals. People will no doubt mention dodgy electrics, but that's not my experience. Just to really shake things up I'd add that my parents run a 1995 Fiat TD that is completely reliable on a big mileage and has no significant rust.

Common rail diesels are already almost five years old and though they have their problems their overall reliability is not in doubt. What might be a problem in ten years time is fixing them on a budget. But then modern fuel-injected petrol engines are even more complicated and have still more potential for electrical gremlins.

Car of the past for the future. - 3500S
The quinessential 'diesel-banger' (as my friend calls his), a 205 diesel.

175,000 miles and still going strong. Absolutely no trouble at all so far for him.
Car of the past for the future. - glowplug
Peugeot 405 TD.

Car of the past for the future. - Gazza
406 1.9/2.1 TD?
Car of the past for the future. - Pugugly {P}
Cavalier - cheap as chips to run, easy to get the bits, £1.55 for an obscure engine seal off the shelf in a dealer. Still a good drive - probably better than a Vectra and a motor you can actually do things with.
Car of the past for the future. - MichaelR
I'd like to nominate my Xantia 1.9TD :) 152k...

Value my car