The Ford Laser SR2 (XRI) is overall a decent reasonably priced car. The performance is decent, having a top speed of 195 km/h and reaching 100 from stop in around 10 seconds and based on my experiences, the 2.0 litre, 16 valve DOHC 4 cylinder engine delivers reasonable performance. The 5 speed manual is great and a must in a car like this, very smooth and direct.
However, one big flaw I've found is fuel economy, I mean yes it is a 2.0 litre and yes it is running on low profile tyres but I would be lucky to get 550 Km's from one tank of fuel rated at 95 octane. My friend has a Toyota corolla and he gets close to 700 Km's on one tank with his car being a 1.8 litre.
But on the whole the Ford Laser SR2 is a decent hatch, obviously not a sporty hatch like a Golf GTI or a Renault Clio but decent none the less. The safety features are great with an H pattern internal structure, dual front airbags and ABS which gives the hatchback a ANCAP safety rating of 3 stars out of 5.
In order to save weight the seats have been made out of cheap materials and are quiet firm and so the bucket seats do not provide much comfort but you don't notice it a lot when driving.
The 2002 Ford Laser SR2 (XRI) is a decent car with decent performance not so good fuel economy but great reliability and looks, just your "run of the mill" sporty-ish hatchback.