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(Telegraph)   The best car of the last 25 years isn't a Ferrari or an Aston Martin or even a Toyota; no, it's the Ford Focus   (telegraph.co.uk) divider line 161
    More: Obvious, Ford Focus, Aston Martin, Ferrari, Toyota, Ford Escort, Mini Cooper, mass transportation, McLaren F1  
•       •       •

9758 clicks; posted to Main » on 01 Sep 2013 at 8:45 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



161 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-09-01 09:35:51 PM  

freak7: hardinparamedic: I owned a 2009 Ford Focus 2 door coupe for 4 years, until earlier this year when I swapped it for a mustang.

Other than oil and routine maintence, I never had to do anything else to it.

The latest generation has a new drive train and one very screwed up transmission according to the flood of posts on focusfanatics.com


The solution is to get the manual.  My GF has a new Focus with the 5M, and loves it.  It's that tricky dual-clutch gearbox which is giving them trouble right now.  It's a great idea for fuel economy and weight saving, but they're very new in economy cars.  If they get those transmissions sorted out they could be awesome.  If...
 
2013-09-01 09:37:18 PM  

DarkSoulNoHope: This will always be the number one car for me on the road.

[imageshack.us image 850x637]
*droolz at purple*

/hubcaps aren't Honda OEM
//they look fugly


www.ustrendy.com
Hey! I like that car too!
 
2013-09-01 09:39:11 PM  
I would go with the Ford F-150 but since that is not technically a car I would have to go with the Jeep Wrangler.
 
2013-09-01 09:39:23 PM  
Things like this remind me of the Ford Transit winning Car and Truck of the Year. Why? Because Fark You, that's why.  Nobody in their right mind would say "This is the car of the year" except some crackpot editors.
 
2013-09-01 09:40:35 PM  
Anyone remember when the 1990s focuses had major engine defects?  Friend of mine had one back then that was no end of trouble.  Suppose the new ones are better.   Another friend is driving a low mileage 2000 focus, the interior is really cheap.   Mazda was doing much better with interiors at the time with the Protege5 and Protege.
 
2013-09-01 09:40:58 PM  

WhoopAssWayne: And they didn't take bailout money. Only MURICAN vehicle I'd consider remaining.


Fixed.
 
2013-09-01 09:41:57 PM  
Regarding our old 2001 Focus:
Ring...."Dad! The cars on fire!"
'OK...on the way'
ring ring..."It's OK, the fire dept is here!"

Words a dad never wants to hear.

To be fair....it wasn't Ford's fault, but rather an idiot child offroading in a Focus. Oil pans are funny like that. Don't like rocks.

/shut up, you judgemental bastid...you did it too
 
2013-09-01 09:42:31 PM  
Trocadero: Hey! I like that car too!

Shut up Marie!
 
2013-09-01 09:44:59 PM  
I currently drive an 05 Mazda 3. (best car on the road as far as I am concerned) Am looking to buy a new car soon. Rented a 2013 Focus for the weekend as an extended test drive. I liked it. Fun little car to drive. Liked everything about it. Mazda just released the 2014 Mazda 3 to market and it is slowly starting to hit the market. If it weren't for Mazda completely redesigning the 3, I probably would have bought a Focus.
 
2013-09-01 09:49:03 PM  

leevis: lack of warmth: leevis: Nope, the 1998 Chevy Lumina 3.1 V6

Nothing with the Chevy 3.1 LG8 motor is worth a crap.  They break head bolts anywhere between 140K to 200K miles whereas the early 90's 3.1 LH0 motor is a dependable motor.  I still see several early 90's Luminas and the vans that shared that motor still running.  The cars with the 3.1 LG8 V6 and 3.4 LQ1 V6 are starting to fade away from the streets.  That is saying a lot in a town that has 80-90% Chevy vehicles on the road.

/ I am friends with an engineer who worked on the LG8 and LQ1 motors for GM and he is the one who informed me that it was something they knew about before production.
//He drives Chevy but none of his cars has those two motors

I bought mine new, just turned over 215,000 miles. Whoever was working on the assembly line in Oshawa when it was being built has my utmost respect.


Just keep an eye out for coolant leaking at the back of the engine compartment on the right side.  That's the corner the bolt will break when it does.  That is how I knew my friend knew what he was talking about, he diagnosed it over the phone.  It took the mechanics two hours.  If it happens, the odds are 50/50 they can get the bolt out without damaging the block.  I'm not wishing ill on you, just a warning.  I don't know anyone who has gotten away with not having that problem with those two motors.  Well, I do know one guy who rebuilt his motor for the fun of it and already replaced the bolts.
 
2013-09-01 09:49:10 PM  

phoenixdan: I currently drive an 05 Mazda 3. (best car on the road as far as I am concerned) Am looking to buy a new car soon. Rented a 2013 Focus for the weekend as an extended test drive. I liked it. Fun little car to drive. Liked everything about it. Mazda just released the 2014 Mazda 3 to market and it is slowly starting to hit the market. If it weren't for Mazda completely redesigning the 3, I probably would have bought a Focus.


I have the predecessor to the 3 wagon, the Protege5.   Love it.  Engine is in great shape. just re-did a bunch of cosmetic wear items so it still looks new for a few more years.   Owned it since it was new for 10 years now.

Considering the Mazda3 with the high mileage engine if no major problems turn up with that.  Having a normal gas engine that gets that kind of mileage for cross country trips is a desirable thing.
 
2013-09-01 09:50:28 PM  
Better than:
• Honda Civic
• Toyota Corolla
• Honda Accord
• Toyota Camry

Right. The editors were snorting cocaine off of each others' behinds.
 
2013-09-01 09:52:23 PM  
I own a 2005 Ford focus with 98k on it.

I just literally last week had the first major mechanical failure on it.. The alternator went (and fark whoever put it at the bottom of the engine right above the front axle)

Besides regular oil changes and maintenance.. I haven't touched anything else.. It really is a great car.
 
2013-09-01 09:53:05 PM  
Gulper Eel:
If some car dealer tries to hard-sell that run-flat shiat at you as a feature, tell him to get a Craftmatic adjustable bed and go blow himself. Run-flats have been nothing but hell for me: they're expensive, noisy, no great shakes in bad weather, and they wear out in 25,000 miles which is a year's driving for me so every fall I have to lay out a thousand for new tires because the Sienna has no place to put a spare. At least the Sienna has been insanely durable outside of the useless farking tires.

No spare?  So what?  Do you carry an extra battery?  Extra radiator?  Man up, bucko.
 
2013-09-01 09:53:45 PM  

lack of warmth: leevis: lack of warmth: leevis: Nope, the 1998 Chevy Lumina 3.1 V6

Nothing with the Chevy 3.1 LG8 motor is worth a crap.  They break head bolts anywhere between 140K to 200K miles whereas the early 90's 3.1 LH0 motor is a dependable motor.  I still see several early 90's Luminas and the vans that shared that motor still running.  The cars with the 3.1 LG8 V6 and 3.4 LQ1 V6 are starting to fade away from the streets.  That is saying a lot in a town that has 80-90% Chevy vehicles on the road.

/ I am friends with an engineer who worked on the LG8 and LQ1 motors for GM and he is the one who informed me that it was something they knew about before production.
//He drives Chevy but none of his cars has those two motors

I bought mine new, just turned over 215,000 miles. Whoever was working on the assembly line in Oshawa when it was being built has my utmost respect.

Just keep an eye out for coolant leaking at the back of the engine compartment on the right side.  That's the corner the bolt will break when it does.  That is how I knew my friend knew what he was talking about, he diagnosed it over the phone.  It took the mechanics two hours.  If it happens, the odds are 50/50 they can get the bolt out without damaging the block.  I'm not wishing ill on you, just a warning.  I don't know anyone who has gotten away with not having that problem with those two motors.  Well, I do know one guy who rebuilt his motor for the fun of it and already replaced the bolts.


You kids wanna talk about head bolts? We had an '84 4 cylinder Charger. In 2000, we tried to do a full rebuild on the motor.  The headbolts were an absolute biatch to get off. How much? We had a pry bar in-between the head and the block. And two people standing on top of it.  We junked the car for parts.
 
2013-09-01 09:54:11 PM  
At least the new ones are a world wide model based on the Euro ones.

Which means north america finally has a higher output turbo version, the ST.

I wouldn't mind having one,  although I'd really like an RS,  which is supposed to be coming to the US as well.
 
2013-09-01 09:55:23 PM  

DarkSoulNoHope: This will always be the number one car for me on the road.

[imageshack.us image 850x637]
*droolz at purple*

/hubcaps aren't Honda OEM
//they look fugly


I have one in white. It's great, but it needs a bit more power and a lot more sound dampening.
 
2013-09-01 09:55:30 PM  

MemeSlave: Your fault for getting AWD.


Wife decided we had to have a car that had it...but whatever foul-weather driving benefits AWD confers, the mediocre tires take away. She had to find out the hard way.
 
2013-09-01 09:56:37 PM  

Great_Milenko: Gulper Eel:
If some car dealer tries to hard-sell that run-flat shiat at you as a feature, tell him to get a Craftmatic adjustable bed and go blow himself. Run-flats have been nothing but hell for me: they're expensive, noisy, no great shakes in bad weather, and they wear out in 25,000 miles which is a year's driving for me so every fall I have to lay out a thousand for new tires because the Sienna has no place to put a spare. At least the Sienna has been insanely durable outside of the useless farking tires.

No spare?  So what?  Do you carry an extra battery?  Extra radiator?  Man up, bucko.


Ever try actually changing a run flat too? I don't mean, change the tire for the spare, I mean remove the tire from the wheel and replace. It is an UBER biatch.
 
2013-09-01 09:58:06 PM  

The more you eat the more you fart: megarian: I miss my old Jimmy. It could plow through sand and water and mailboxes.

Now I still have my Grand Am. It is heals together by gaffers tape, spit, and luck.

Yay.

I had a 1995 grand am gt. 3100 v6.

Fast as hell for just 150hp.

Transmission went at 175k miles.

Converted it to RWD as a weekend project car and dropped in a GM zz3 crate.

Vrrooom!


Mine was/is a '97 gt.

I faking love this car. This car and and I have been involved in terrible, terrible things. Therefore, we cannot part until one of us dies.
 
2013-09-01 09:58:27 PM  
For whatever it's worth, some of the recent Focuses (Foci?) have gotten poor reliability reviews from Consumer Reports.  Those reviews are based on questionnaires that owners send in, so I think they're pretty reliable.
 
2013-09-01 10:01:17 PM  

lordargent: I rented a focus a couple of years.

Unless they've completely redesigned them from the ground up since then, or have a huge quality range in their model lines, I have just one thing to say.

[i1.kym-cdn.com image 468x349]

Second worst car I ever rented (the worst was some sort of Kia midsized SUV thing that had humungous blind spots).


**THIS**

My friend owned a focus for a while... it was the worst car she ever owned. Even when new it needed repairs all the time and was a POS that eventually was not worth the cost of constant repair. I rode in it quite a few times and I must say it was a cheaply made pile of dung that should have been never made in the first place.
 
2013-09-01 10:01:21 PM  
Since we're doing this:

1993 mustang. Still my only car. Still runs great.
 
2013-09-01 10:01:47 PM  

SunsetLament: This is more of an indictment of the last 25 years of the automotive industry than anything anything else.


Cars have become very complex, safe, and reliable. There is an awful lot of value in a $20k car
 
2013-09-01 10:02:41 PM  

harlock: phoenixdan: I currently drive an 05 Mazda 3. (best car on the road as far as I am concerned) Am looking to buy a new car soon. Rented a 2013 Focus for the weekend as an extended test drive. I liked it. Fun little car to drive. Liked everything about it. Mazda just released the 2014 Mazda 3 to market and it is slowly starting to hit the market. If it weren't for Mazda completely redesigning the 3, I probably would have bought a Focus.

I have the predecessor to the 3 wagon, the Protege5.   Love it.  Engine is in great shape. just re-did a bunch of cosmetic wear items so it still looks new for a few more years.   Owned it since it was new for 10 years now.

Considering the Mazda3 with the high mileage engine if no major problems turn up with that.  Having a normal gas engine that gets that kind of mileage for cross country trips is a desirable thing.


Heard the Protege was a good car too. Knew several people that drove em into the ground. I think Mazda is far too often overlooked by people. I think the new 3 , 6, and CX5 is gonna help to increase sales at Mazda.

/enjoy your free month of TotalFark just for being a Mazda owner. :)
 
2013-09-01 10:02:41 PM  

DarkSoulNoHope: This will always be the number one car for me on the road.

[imageshack.us image 850x637]
*droolz at purple*

/hubcaps aren't Honda OEM
//they look fugly


A fellow purple lover I see.

This was my old Ford Probe,  this was a factory color called Wild Orchid Metallic;
i3.photobucket.com

/My purple probe
/No jokes to be made here,  no siree.
 
2013-09-01 10:04:10 PM  
Focus?

img29.imageshack.us
 
2013-09-01 10:04:56 PM  
I have to admit, I have a Zipcar account and they have all sorts of different cars. I've thus far driven a Nissan Frontier, A Mazda 3, Ford Focus a VW Golf and a VW Jetta.

My favorites among all of them are the Ford Focus, the Mazda 3 and the VW Jetta.
 
2013-09-01 10:06:34 PM  
apparently non of you have ever driven one of these

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honda_S2000

flat.out.riot
 
2013-09-01 10:08:06 PM  
My Focus ST has been flawless throughout its first ten months of life. Fantastic little car, outside of its borderline-crappy paint.
 
2013-09-01 10:08:19 PM  

TanSau: As a mechanic:
 BULLSHIAT!

Seriously, the Focus and it's older brother, the Escort are the worst things on the road. 

Better than Toyota?

biatch please....


I got a ZX2 in the driveway with 68K on it. Your move mate.
 
2013-09-01 10:13:13 PM  
I was stuck in the back of a Focus for several hours and it didn't take long to figure out it seemed to be designed for people 6 inches shorter than I am. My head was burrowed into the ceiling at an awkward angle lead to lovely neck ache.
 
2013-09-01 10:13:45 PM  

freak7: I almost bought a 2013 Focus, but there have been so many complaints about the transmission that I decided against it.  To this day, there are still ongoing problems that have a lot of owners pissed off.


I'm one of those. Damn thing is so shaky off the line. 1/2 way through a two year lease.
 
2013-09-01 10:13:46 PM  

AlwaysRightBoy: Marcus Aurelius: AlwaysRightBoy: I just bought a 2014 Ford Fusion hybrid with an Aston Martin front end, wonder where I stand?

/actually a very smart car tech wise

Those look nice... today.  We'll see how they look in five years.  But mechanically they're sound and low maintenance.

I'm partial to Nissans and Inifinitis, so myself I'd go with the G37xs coupe.

It's my first hybrid and my first Ford so I'm interested in how it plays out. Bought it for my wife hoping it will serve us for at least ten years.

/technology wise it's pretty impressive to me


I've had a couple of Fords.  I've had all the American cars.  Some European ones too.  The GMs and Fords could technically last for 10 years, but the things just tend to disintegrate.  Not as bad as a Chrysler, but still.  Nothing lasts quite like a Japanese car (Mazda excepted of course).
 
2013-09-01 10:14:09 PM  

jayphat: You kids wanna talk about head bolts? We had an '84 4 cylinder Charger. In 2000, we tried to do a full rebuild on the motor.  The headbolts were an absolute biatch to get off. How much? We had a pry bar in-between the head and the block. And two people standing on top of it.  We junked the car for parts.


You tried rebuilding an 84 Charger with a 4 cylinder, why?
 
2013-09-01 10:15:50 PM  

Zeb Hesselgresser: apparently non of you have ever driven one of these

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honda_S2000

flat.out.riot


The torque doesn't kick in until 4000 RPMs, and you can't let it go under that.  The newer ones are better.  They beat the bejesus out of a Miata in any case.
 
2013-09-01 10:16:20 PM  
Nothing beats the unreliable ignition switch I keep in the door pocket of my '96 Volvo. Big red wires from the battery to the starter. Looks like a bomb or something. My local garage won't touch it. They just kept it running to change the tires. I'll probably get another one just like it when it finally dies at about 400,000 miles or so. I've noticed they just keep getting cheaper and and cheaper as the years go by. Lucky me.
 
2013-09-01 10:18:07 PM  

limeyfellow: I was stuck in the back of a Focus for several hours and it didn't take long to figure out it seemed to be designed for people 6 inches shorter than I am. My head was burrowed into the ceiling at an awkward angle lead to lovely neck ache.


My dad's 6' 4", and part of how we picked the focus was his ability to sit in front. But no, I don't think the back would have done him much good... but really, hot hatches aren't designed for big adults to sit in the back.
 
2013-09-01 10:19:03 PM  

pestluvr: Had one, quite literally drove it into the ground after 8 years and 180,000 miles.  It was an all right car, though I don't know if I'd ever drive another one.


It couldn't turn left?
 
2013-09-01 10:20:02 PM  

freak7: I almost bought a 2013 Focus, but there have been so many complaints about the transmission that I decided against it.  To this day, there are still ongoing problems that have a lot of owners pissed off.


2012 Focus, too.  Had to fight to get it looked at.  But I had driven enough miles that there was no mistaking the issue.  They admitted the issue, and then.

Get this

while my car was on the rack to get a new clutch, the dealer got a Cease and Desist order from Ford Central on fixing the car.  Had to wait about a month for the formal fix.

It's fixed.  Not a terrible car, and for the mileage, it does go when you punch it.
But, I've hated it for the past 12 months or so, all over the transmission.
Driving a Toyota now.
 
2013-09-01 10:20:45 PM  

lack of warmth: jayphat: You kids wanna talk about head bolts? We had an '84 4 cylinder Charger. In 2000, we tried to do a full rebuild on the motor.  The headbolts were an absolute biatch to get off. How much? We had a pry bar in-between the head and the block. And two people standing on top of it.  We junked the car for parts.

You tried rebuilding an 84 Charger with a 4 cylinder, why?


5 siblings. We lived on a farm. Had most of the equipment and knowledge. And well, we needed the wheels.
 
2013-09-01 10:21:56 PM  
I drove a 2000 Focus for a while.  Tons of recalls the first few years, but otherwise fun to drive.  And no major problems outside of the recall issues that were covered.

Currently driving a 2009 Focus.  No problems at all so far, and still a fun drive.

Although that first-gen Sync voice recognition is a bit...odd, at times.
 
2013-09-01 10:22:58 PM  
my 2005 matrix XRS was better than the focus (except the svt) in every way. and the only disadvantage it had to the svt focus was in power. it was more reliable, got better mileage, held more stuff, and was only slightly slower.
 
2013-09-01 10:23:37 PM  

freak7: hardinparamedic: I owned a 2009 Ford Focus 2 door coupe for 4 years, until earlier this year when I swapped it for a mustang.

Other than oil and routine maintence, I never had to do anything else to it.

The latest generation has a new drive train and one very screwed up transmission according to the flood of posts on focusfanatics.com


That is why you do what the car magazines tell you to do, and buy the Focus SE  with the manual transmission.
 
2013-09-01 10:27:57 PM  

SVenus: 2012 Focus, too.  Had to fight to get it looked at.  But I had driven enough miles that there was no mistaking the issue.  They admitted the issue, and then.


I was just checking out Focus Fanatics, reading an official statement from Ford on the issue.  Basically they're saying that there's nothing wrong with the transmissions and people just need to realize that this new technology isn't going to give the same driving experience as what people are used to with older automatic transmissions.
 
2013-09-01 10:28:38 PM  
it would have been the '95 corolla, except for that thing where their airbags exploded randomly, tho rarely. so yeah, ford whatever that was.

/ford makes things besides pickups?
 
2013-09-01 10:28:45 PM  
As someone who, merely two days ago, bought a 2001 Honda Civic LX with 63k miles on it for...ONE DOLLAR.  I have to say, no.
 
2013-09-01 10:33:55 PM  

leevis: Nope, the 1998 Chevy Lumina 3.1 V6


Enjoy replacing that blown intake manifold gasket every three years.
 
2013-09-01 10:35:03 PM  
And the best car of the next 25 years will probably be a Tesla.
 
2013-09-01 10:37:10 PM  

Boo_Guy: DarkSoulNoHope: This will always be the number one car for me on the road.

[imageshack.us image 850x637]
*droolz at purple*

/hubcaps aren't Honda OEM
//they look fugly

A fellow purple lover I see.

This was my old Ford Probe,  this was a factory color called Wild Orchid Metallic;
[i3.photobucket.com image 800x600]

/My purple probe
/No jokes to be made here,  no siree.


==================

The Probe was actually a Mazda MX-6.  I had a first gen, nice handling car, average reliability for it's time.  Trans grenaded at 153K.
 
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