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2012 Ford Focus

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Comments

  • bricknordbricknord Posts: 85
    edited May 2011
    I've driven the current 5 cylinder Golf, but it has been a while.

    A VW Golf is really my perfect car in theory. I've owned VW Golfs from 1981 models through the MK4 series, all four generations. I have not owned a MK5 Rabbit/Golf, but have driven them, and owned a MK5 Jetta.

    My big problem with the current Golf is two-fold:

    First, you can't get a stick shift with the four door. Stupid. If I can buy a 4-door stick GTI, should be able to get a Golf the same way. Major minus to me.

    Second, and more importantly, I find it really, really tough to justify buying a new car the size of a Golf these days with such crummy MPG. You're barely cracking 30 highway with a 4 door Golf automatic 2.5. That stinks. Real world MPG is going to be in the 25 range much of the time. I can buy an Elantra, Civic, Focus, etc that gets far better. Yeah, I know, you can get a diesel Golf. I don't want one. This, by the way, is a major downfall of the current Mazda3, as well, but Mazda is handling this if I'm not mistaken, soon.

    The Focus hatch suddenly looks way more attractive to this long time VW owner. Likely low to mid 30's average MPG, close to 40 highway, and just as fun to drive as the Golf.

    The Golf has a signifcantly nicer interior, and probably a little more usable rear seat. What was decent fuel economy 5 years ago to me has changed these days, though. When you can get a SkyActiv M3 hatch or Focus hatch with nearly 40 mpg on gasoline, I would think the life of the VW Golf in the US would get really tough.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    This being said, I saw a Focus hatch on the lot when I was there for right around $28k. A nice car, but I have to question spending $28k on a Focus, no matter how good, in the US at least. Talk about a depreciation hit when you go to trade or sell that car. The market for a nearly $30k Focus has got to be pretty limited. I'd say anything over low $20's would really be testing the limits of what Americans are going to pay for a car like this. Some folks will pay for the perceived cachet of driving a Jetta, etc. Some of them will buy a $28k Jetta. A $28k Focus, no matter how good, will be a tough sell. The public perception of what a Focus is worth isn't remotely in the $28k range, I don't think.

    & people still think a Golf can be worth up to $40k?

    That's the whole point. This new Euro Ford should not be named Ford Focus in America, where the original lemon already ruined its reputation. Almost a decade ago, the Focus here had an expensive stability-control option nobody bothered with. Ditto the HID projector headlights, etc. Then people whined about decontenting for the U.S.-spec Focus.

    Call this superb-dynamic Euro-design car a FWD Jaguar, Aston Martin, etc., then no one will complain about the rear leg room. Oops, too late, Ford already sold these nameplates...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    Keep in mind that had VW not decontented the car, it would likely have been priced significantly higher than an average Focus. The Focus I drove was a smidge under $18k. You would probably not have seen a Jetta anywhere in that price league if they hadn't decontented/repositioned the car.

    I don't think that is the case. The Focus SEs I saw a week ago didn't have much in the way of equipment and listed for $21-22k. I doubt a similarly-equipped Jetta (non-decontented) would be more than that, based on Golf 4-door prices. A Golf 4-door with moonroof is about the same price as the Focus SE hatch with moonroof that I saw. And a basic Golf 2-door starts at under $19k including destination... very close to that stripped Focus you drove. Based on my inspection of the SE, I'd rather have the Golf if they are in the same price range.

    I wouldn't pay $28k for any compact car... unless maybe it came from Bavaria.
  • lostlost Posts: 64
    I just got done building a 2012 Focus SEL hatch auto with 302A package and the VW 2011 Golf 4 door with auto and all the options available and the difference between the two was $300. The Focus gets better MPG and has leather and more equipment then the VW. The Focus has more cargo area, the VW has 2 inches more of second row legroom. Go to the web sites and build your own. You can own a great Focus for 23,000 NOT 28,000.
  • tomcatt630tomcatt630 Posts: 124
    edited May 2011
    I disagree about "Focus name = :lemon: "

    And, there is a lot of buzz about the Titanium edition. If Honda can offer loaded Civics with leather for mid $20K, why not Ford? And no one is forcing people to only buy top of the line.

    It's not the early 90's where Escorts were all $10499. Remember inflation still exists, so if don't like new car MSRP's, buy used.

    And what's the fuss about Focus' reat seat room? This isn't the full sized segment. Checked back seat at Auto Show and it's a compact, get a Taurus or minivan if carrying a family.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    The Focus has more cargo area, the VW has 2 inches more of second row legroom.

    Only 2 inches? Maybe, if you're only measuring the knee room.

    Despite Golf's narrow rear seating, my slim 5"11" frame can stretch out my legs all the way (yes, both front & back) comfortably when sitting on these high chairs. The new Focus' back seat feels like obsolete.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    My big problem with the current Golf is two-fold:

    First, you can't get a stick shift with the four door...


    The Focus stick has rear doors, but when will you be using them? LOL

    Which car would you rather have? A 2-dr car w/ an useful back seat? Or a 4-dr car w/ an useless back seat?

    Aren't you glad that after the recent major facelift, the current Golf 2-dr has added height adjustment for the front passenger seat, which can be raised so you can freely stretch out your legs? Only the discontinuation of optional rear A/C vents is a disadvantage for the 2-dr Golf. Besides, have you ever thought about how enjoyable it is to sit in the back of the 2-dr Golf having unobstructed panoramic peripheral view through the one-piece side glass, along w/ great ride comfort? ;) & which other 2-dr cars got comfy seating in the back?

    Stop being a cheapskate. Which other German import will actually end up costing you less $ overall than the reliable 5-cyl Golf? :D

    The only reason I don't own one is b/c its electric steering provides too little feel, so I ended up collecting a manual-steering noisy Mk1 Jetta coupe instead...
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    C class cars are not econobxoes anymore

    Exactly, especially w/ that expensive price tag & expensively built multi-link rear supension in order to optimize the ride/handling compromise not unlike the Mercedes C-Class. Therefore, the rear seating of a "classy" C class shouldn't feel like inside of a penalty box, either! :P
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    "And what's the fuss about Focus' reat [sic] seat room? This isn't the full sized segment. Checked back seat at Auto Show and it's a compact, get a Taurus or minivan if carrying a family."

    Me thinks your comments are a bit disingenuous. Why? Because there are plenty of cars in class which do offer enough rear seat room to park adults, the Jetta and the Mazda3 chief among them.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    To a lot of folks, a Ford compact car = Pinto, or a modern derivative of it.

    The German engineered new Focus does have something in common -- a useless back seat, but that where the similarity ends!

    A nice car, but I have to question spending $28k on a Focus, no matter how good, in the US at least.

    Since Europe never had a Pinto, it is OK to sell the new Focus at premium price over there I guess.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    And a basic Golf 2-door starts at under $19k including destination... very close to that stripped Focus you drove. Based on my inspection of the SE, I'd rather have the Golf if they are in the same price range.

    W/o AC or a CD player...I can't remember the last time I had even been in a car that was just an AM/FM radio, or without AC for that matter. Even Honda has included AC on the DX since 2006 at least.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
    Uh... no. The base Golf is pretty well equipped. You must be thinking of the base Jetta.
  • bricknordbricknord Posts: 85
    edited May 2011
    BTW, having driven a Jetta S (the most base trim you'll likely ever see although technically there is a base trim sans A/C), I can tell you that the Focus and Elantra are in a totally different (superior) league. The Jetta SE might be able to compete, but a Jetta S automatic compared to a similar trim Elantra or Focus, not even close. Jetta wins on interior volume. That's it. I'm not talking just interior, either, I'm talking how the cars perform on the road. Frankly, aside from acceleration, which is really nice with the Jetta SE/manual trans combo, the Jetta SE is outclassed in many areas when compared to the Focus (and Hyundai).

    As has been pointed out, the base Golf is a completely different animal than the Jetta sedan.
  • snakebitsnakebit Posts: 2
    I would consider the wife and I as older and mature about transportation costs. Now in our 50's, we have "been there-done that" when it comes to buying new and throwing monetary caution to the wind over the previous decades. Now we drive paid for vehicles and relish in the total cost per mile that is now possible using tools like AutoTrader database searches for low mileage older cars.
    (eg. Near mint 1997 Escort wagon with 22,000 miles for $4200.00. Not sexy. Incredibly cheap transport. We now spend our money visiting the Amalfi coast of Positano Italy and eating\drinking the worlds cuisine. Our cup is full)

    I say all that to say this. She flat out loves this car. I'm gonna get her one. Yea, the back seat ain't much. We both agreed we would't be sitting back there. lol We are convinced the grandbabies car seat will fit just fine though.

    I haven't seen her feel this strongly about a car since her late 80's convertable Mustang. (5.0 without the "wings and stuff" Just like the Highway Patrol drove, but topless, she said)

    Anyways, I was impressed with how well done the whole package was. And with fuel prices suddenly remenicient of those in Italy too, I am stunned you can get this kind of economy in a car that offers so much ELECTIVE upscale options. Thank you Ford. I do believe you finally got it!!

    I think we will go the SEL with 301A package. Seems like the sweet spot. (for us) All the gizmos that make you forget you are in a C class, short of leather. And still just tickling 23K

    Friends and family will be shocked the 2 old fogies bought a brand new car. We don't do that. Goes against our philosophy. It's that nice of a car. Gonna see if we can get 40mpg crossing Texas while listening to our fav tunes from the 80's on that marvelous 10 speaker Sony.
  • lcw1lcw1 Posts: 35
    We are old like you and liked the Focus after a test drive, however we didn't like it enough to part with 23.5K especially when you can get a well equipped Accord, Camry, Fusion or Hyundai Senata for that price. Sure you loose 5 miles to the gallon but spending additional $200/year more on Gas per year is worth the added comfort, power and safety of a larger vehicle. If the objective is to save on gas our choice goes to the VW Golf TDI that has similar features plus gets better gas mileage, has 17'' wheels, Lumbar support and is very pleasant to drive. I hope the Focus takes off and makes Ford plenty of money but as a middle of the road consumer who admittedly lacks marketing savvy I doubt that you will see steady buyers at those prices. Hope you enjoy your Focus.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    ...whom is well into his or her fifties that doesn't really like being considered "old"? Yeesh, I still like sporty cars with manual transmissions, stiff suspensions and plenty of get-up-and-go; I still run twenty or more miles per week, play soccer with my son, and am active enough to still have to visit the hospital for various stitches and broken bones and such. :confuse:
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,784
  • snakebitsnakebit Posts: 2
    Coincidently, we have been waiting\watching for low mileage Jetta TDI's every since they returned to our shores a couple of years ago. It WAS definately going to be her next car. (for exactly the reasons you mention)

    2 problems though.......
    First, the ones currently showing up are holding their value so well that they hardly could be considered a steal. Of course this is very good news if you are the purchaser of a new Jetta TDI!

    Second, unfortunately, the early new TDI's (post 2006 models) are not exactly earning a reputation of high reliability? Some are having serious issues. (TDI forums are great too) There are signs VWA may be getting a handle on the bigger issues with the latest release. But it will take time to know for sure.

    Admittedly the new Focus is likely healing her wounds of dissapointment in not being as excited about a used TDI as she once was. Combine that with 3 different Ford escorts she has had great luck with over the past 30 years, the Ford might be easier for her to trust. (she loves cars. She is too funny)

    (I am a Ford Super Duty Redneck. The whole family is. Have been for years. But we have ventured outside the Blue Oval on a few Infinities and Toyotas)

    And finally, that Focus that she likes STICKERS at 23K. Likely can be had for closer to 21. Frankly, it was much more FUN equipped so nicely than a 21K Fusion or Accord. And her sister has a loaded Civic that cost even more that she finds uninspiring.

    Regardless, I love it when something gets her that jazzed. She is pretty unflappable. The new Focus tickled her fancy. Thank you Ford. You make this easier for me. :)
  • So let's compare the Sonata Limited vs the
    Sonata limited: 28.5K

    Focus Titanium /w Premium package (leather, etc), parking tech, and nav: 26.75K

    So a price difference of around 2k.

    Pros of the focus:

    Rain sensing whipers
    Everything is voice command
    Traffic, weather, etc deliveried via voice command
    Pandora + Sticher integration
    Vehicle health reports
    Hatchback (utility)
    Paralell parks itself

    Sonata pluses:
    Bigger back seat
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Now perform that same comparison between the Focus and the Mazda3 and you'll see a much different story. The Mazda has nearly as many goodies as the Focus, can be had with a stick for all trim levels, has much more rear seat room, and is thousands less. What's not to like.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,033
    What's not to like.

    That big, buck toothed grin on the Mazda!!
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    edited May 2011
    On that account, I happen to agree. Here's hoping the "face-lifted" 2012 Mazda3 presents a better looking schnozzle to the world. :)

    FWIW, while I much prefer the looks of the Focus over the Mazda3, the fact remains that the Mazda is a far better thought out car (or at least will be when the new SkyActiv engines and transmissions debut). If I had to choose between the two there's little doubt in my mind I'd choose the Mazda in spite of how good the Focus looks.
  • robr2robr2 BostonPosts: 8,033
    On that account, I happen to agree. Here's hoping the "face-lifted" 2012 Mazda3 presents a better looking schnozzle to the world.

    Nah - looks like they just gave it a mouthguard!!

    http://www.autoblog.com/photos/2012-mazda3-0/#4074350
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,677
    heh...I love big grills...Audi, Chrysler 300, CTS.

    That big dumb looking M3 grill looks so...dumb (must be PC here...). They could have had a cool looking car, instead it looks like the lovable idiot (think cletus from the simpsons).

    There's something i don't trust about a big permanent smile...

    The Focus design looks much more harmonious.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    edited May 2011
    The Focus looks handsome, the Mazda3 does handsome (from a utility and drive perspective).
  • m6userm6user Posts: 3,048
    MPG is behind the times. I know they are coming out with some new tech engine wise which will drastically change that equation but right now the 3's mpg pales in comparison to Focus and others in the class. Maybe they'll fix the grin too and all will be well in Mazdaland.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    I wouldn't even consider a 2011 Mazda3; my 2009 Mazda3 is just fine thank you. That said, I would very much consider a 2012 SkyActiv-G or better still, a 2013 SkyActiv-D.

    The above said, considering how much less the 2011 Mazda3 costs versus the 2012 Focus (as close to apples to apples as one can get), you can buy a bunch of gas with the difference. I suspect on a cost per mile basis, the two are pretty comparable. That of course will change when SkyActiv becomes a reality. :)

    What really annoys me about all of this is that I was so bent on getting a new Focus (even through Ford discriminates against those of us whom prefer manual transmissions), even to the point of trading in my prefectly good 2009; then I got into the front driver's seat, sit to my liking and then shoehorned my way into the left rear seat. That killed the deal right there.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    I know I know. I own an '07 Focus & a "'91 Escort equivalent" '90 Protege. So the new Focus is a joke on rear leg room, while costing more than an Elantra similarly equipped. & now some people are even comparing the new Focus to the similarly priced Sonata? Just remember, the Focus & Hyundai sedans are opposites of each other, as they serve completely different purposes. The Focus is designed to satisfy drivers, while Hyundai sedans (all the way to the Equus) are designed to satisfy back-seat drivers.

    People expect the Focus to be an inexpensive noisy boom box w/ adult-size rear leg room. The new Focus has none of the above. So therefore should be renamed in order not to confuse consumers.

    But Ford is afraid to call it the Ford Probe coupe b/c it's got rear doors? Come on, this is the 21th Century. Coupes can have rear doors. Just check out the more cramped-&-expensive versions of the Mercedes E-class & VW Passat sedans -- the CLS & CC, respectively. & what about the RX-8 sports car?

    Do you know that the more expensive CC version of the Passat actually costs less to lease than its roomier sedan version? B/c the more-attractive CC has better resale value due more buyers waiting for it.

    Comparing the Sonata to the new roomy Jetta makes more sense.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    edited May 2011
    Now perform that same comparison between the Focus and the Mazda3 and you'll see a much different story. The Mazda has nearly as many goodies as the Focus, can be had with a stick for all trim levels, has much more rear seat room, and is thousands less. What's not to like.

    That's a good question. Is the Mazda3 noisier especially when cruising on the fwy?

    About 20 yrs ago, I was comparing the Mazda Protege to its Ford-verision Escort/Tracer, which are also available w/ the Mazda 1.8 DOHC. I really prefer the styling of the Tracer sedan, but I ended up w/ the made-in-Japan Protege for quality reason. Especially when comparing to Escort's std smooth/comfy set up that glides over bumps, the Mazda's suspension tuning has quick rebound which bounces the whole car right afterward just as high as each of the bump it just soaked up. But the solution was to try out different aftermarket shock absorbers & ended up w/ Monroe & Gabriel solving the problem.

    Today, Gabriels are too hard. But I'm pretty sure Monroe will solve Mazda3's quick nervous rebound motion. So far, the early Mazda3's are available w/ Monroe shocks.

    I prefer the exterior styling of the Rabbit/GTI V over the Golf/GTI VI, but I'm kind of annoyed by the MkV's inside door handle located so far aft for the driver. Ditto the new Focus. Like the old Focus, the new Mazda3 wins in this little detail, just like every '90-91 Protege (1, 2)
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Even though my age is well into AARP land, I still very much prefer a stiffly suspended car with excellent handling over pretty much anything else. My 2009 Mazda3 (with 17" wheels and shod with modestly sized 205/50 R17 Michelin Pilot Sports) deals with the bumps and "frost heaves" we get here in New Hampshire better than any good handling car I've ever driven this side of a BMW, Audi or VW GTI. So while you may not like the "quick rebound" of Mazda suspensions, I actually enjoy them.

    Is the Mazda a bit noisy at freeway speeds? Yes, but tolerably so, and as I understand it, the Gen 2 Mazda3 is much improved in that department.
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