I have a 1998 Ford Escort. It is a 5spd. Sometimes in 4th or 5th gear, and once in awhile in first it tends to jerk. It just does it from time to time, and it does not matter how many rpms I am running. Any ideal what it could be?

An engine misfire is much more likely than a transmission problem.

Is the check engine light on?

Have things like the spark plugs and wires, air filter, fuel filter been serviced in accordance with the intervals in the owner’s manual?

I got the car with like 112k. I have changed the spark plugs and fuel filter, and the usual things. It mostly kicks going up hills. Not sure why that is.It now has 140k. The check engine light is not on.

If it is mostly up hills then the first thing I would suspect is a fuel delivery problem. Check the fuel pressure under load - or have some one do it. You can get a basic fuel pressure tester for about $40 or so.

Does is kick while you’re just driving along, or only when you shift? And if it happens in first gear is is only when you first get going?

It usually kicks when I am driving along. Yeah when I start out it in 1st it seems to want to be revved to get going. I kind of am thinking it could be a fuel delivery problem. I changed my fuel filter not long ago. I took it to Autozone and had a computer scan, and it came back nothing wrong.

Manual transmission?

Yep, it is a manual.