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Ford Focus 2005 release date

curiouscurious Posts: 3
edited March 21 in Ford
Have just seen the new Ford Focus 2005 preview at http://www.Fordvehicles.com/2005focus and it looks amazing... completely different from the old Sedan SE or ZX3 or ZX5. It looks like an Acura Integra or Acura RSX.

Does anyone know what date it will be released? All the site says is a vague "Spring 2004"... I was planning on buying a car in the next 2 weeks, but will wait if it's just a matter of a month to 6 weeks. Any ideas based on Ford's track record?

Also, any sneak previews on financial incentives for this new car?
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Comments

  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Completely different? Your definition of completely different is sure a lot "different" than mine. All they have done is given the front end some tweaking and from the early pictures released, a new dash (not an improvement in my opinion) and I assume they have tweaked the rear end a bit too, though I have seen no pictures of the rear end, sedan or hatch. This categorizes as a "freshening", not a new design.

    Not that that is all bad. The Focus is a good solid platform, generally regarded as best in its class, and now that its initial teething pains are taken care of, even Consumer Reports rates it best in class, since reliability has now improved to average. Makes sense for Ford not to mess with a good thing.

    Unless you think this freshening is a must have for you, I doubt you will be unhappy with a 2004, and if you wait till the 2005's are introduced, you might even get a better bargain on a 2004.
  • bretaabretaa Posts: 130
    The rear design, oddly, looks somewhat like a Lincoln LS now, with narrow, truncated taillights.

    Of course, we in Ford's home market apparently aren't sophisticated enough to appreciate the real, completely redone Focus that will be in Europe on the same platform that underpins the Mazda 3 and Volvo S40.

    - Bret
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    The big difference for 2005 is in the base engine, they've dropped the old SPFI 2.0 l Escort holdover, and the 2.0 l Zetec and replaced them with a new Mazda designed Duratec 2.0 l, fuel economy should be better with the new engine than with either of those. Now the bad news, the 2.3 l version is only available on the ZX4 ST however, I don't need the bigger engine myself, but it would be nice to have it as an option across the line. However, traction control is back as an option, and bigger front discs are standard. The new dash is less interesting but seems to 'feel' better and more substantial, should be less prone to rattles and squeaks. Overall the styling of the new sedan strikes me as looking like a mini Five Hundred, much more formal then the original version, maybe they were following demographics, because though Ford's advertising was trying to sell the Focus to twentysomethings, the car has been extremely popular with older people and retirees.
  • badgerfanbadgerfan Posts: 1,564
    Yes, I think Ford is sharing some styling cues among their new models. Even the very slight freshening they did to the 2004 Taurus (which will see little more development as Futura and 500 take its place) has the grille shape and the layout below the bumper similar to the front end of the 2005 Focus. Sharing styling across models is a good thing for corporate identity, but could lead to too much homegeneity as well and get a bit boring.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    I like the new front clip, not wild about the rear (curious if there is any change to the hatches) and absolutely hate the interior. I really wish they had kept the orginal interior and just made it with nicer materials. This new interior just screams "rental car" to me despite the nicer materials. One of the things that I really liked about the Focus was the interior style.

    New front clip looks nice though. Looks sharp. I'm not sure I understands Ford's decision to only offer the sport package on the sedan. Seems like the sporty segment would really prefer the hatches. (of course the car lover in me says that the sport package should be available on all the Focus models including the wagon, but what do I know?)
  • curiouscurious Posts: 3
    Love all the feedback re-the changes but what I really want to know is approximately when it will be available?

    Does Spring mean April/May? Or June?
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    I've heard May. Just a rumour though. They have plenty of 2005s now in the lot at Wayne Assembly, but I think those are test builds.
  • curiouscurious Posts: 3
    Love all the feedback re-the changes but what I really want to know is approximately when it will be available?

    Does Spring mean April/May? Or June?
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    So this feature really took care of post-'04 change? How about the SVT steering? Is that already std across the board?

    The newer "Focus" -- Focus II, Mazda3 & S40 -- don't got no belt-driven hydraulic steering assist, so the old SVT steering is still the best.

    Only the Beemer...
    creakid1 "BMW 1-Series - 2005" Mar 27, 2004 2:33am

    The last Euro-tuned-suspension Focus I drove was the Street Edition sedan/wagon in tacky yellow/blue/red choices. & its steering assist sucks -- just like the ordinary American Focus.

    The new taillights make the shape of the whole car looking kind of awkward. Besides, it's so Tercel/Accent/Accord from the mid '90's.

    Today, I was in Mexico & saw the Mondeo w/ nearly identical front end as this '05 American Focus. I can probably own one here in S. California & be as unique as can be, but do have to cross the border for service though.
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    Per Ford's own website, May 2004:

    http://www.fordvehicles.com/americanidol3/index.asp?bhcp=1

    Whether that's early or late may I don't know. I was told May was the anticipated launch at the Detroit show too.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    interesting as the (normal U.S.) Focus is pretty much universally praised for its steering feel. In my personally experience it is one of the best feeling power steering equiped cars I've ever driven. I still prefer the feel of a non-boosted unit, but good luck finding a new car so equipped in the US these days.

    Not sure creakid what you're talking about in regards to the Focus's steering.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    & that's how I felt when I drove my '98 Corolla LE to a Ford dealer for a test drive, but when I showed up again in my '90 Protege LX, the Focus's steering no longer felt so impressive.

    The N.A.-spec non-SVT Focus has a stronger steering boost than the Euro spec, but the SVT has less assist along w/ a quicker rack. C&D couldn't stand the N.A. non-SVT Focus's nervous steering when going in a straight line if the car is equipped w/ 16"s.

    Ford claimed a re-tuning in the steering for '04(?), so I wonder if it's now similar to the SVT's setting.
  • vibsrvibsr Posts: 47
    Hey curious#1:
    I'll admit that the '05 Focus is one good lookin' piece of work.
    However, that front end has that Ford signature all over it. Looks like an Integra?? ahhh....NO. Taurus/Mondeo/500....Yeah.
    Those taillights, as clean as they are (the shape), should have amber turn-signal sections. In my opinion, it takes another step
    toward eliminating confusion in heavy traffic.

    One thing for certain....FoMoCo is gonna throw those incentives out there, along with those rental-fleet sales like always. The result: easy to focus on a Focus. Low prices all-the-way!
  • revdrluvrevdrluv Posts: 417
    The REAL next Focus better come out as soon as the hype from the new Mustang dies down.

    It just seems pathetic on Fords part to make such a big deal about a new nose. And how is a 150hp ST edition supposed to make up for the loss of the SVT?!?!? It has to cost a similar amount as the SVT, and that makes it the lame duck of it's segment.
  • mindaugusmindaugus Posts: 20
    I believe its out now but I haven't been to a dealership. I'm not sure why they couldn't drop in the same engine as the mazda 3i. Why not give it SV-T and boost the HP, or give it more fuel economy. Again they compromise in their cost benefit ratio and we get screwed. Heard they might go for a 2006 or 2007 common-rail diesel, when low sulfur diesel is out. Now thats the way to go!
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    It's the same base engine as the 3i, but with different heads, it supposedly has a broader torque curve and is better mated to an automatic transmission, which is the way most Foci are sold. I thought the power an the former engine was acceptable for day to day driving and the new one's better. I too hope we get the common-rail diesel. and the C-1 platform. It wouldn't make sense to switch it until next year at the earliest in NA, because they're consolidating all production at Wayne, and converting Hermosillo to production of the Car-formerly-known-as-the-Futura in 2005. I haven't heard definitely one way or the other whether they will be switching paltforms here, but the restyle sure resembles the C-1 Focus in its nose and its interior.
  • mindaugusmindaugus Posts: 20
    Very interesting about the heads. Where could I find more info on that? I don't understand why people don't wanna shift gears, and was hoping the ford focus would have the same power and efficiency as the Mazda 3 thats been getting rave reviews, without its strange gage cluster. So how does this engine compare with the competitors? By the numbers, the only resources I know, the engine has the same HP but less efficiency as the Corolla. Of course you can get the PZEV, too on the focus. What advantage does the manual focus have to a manual Corolla besides price and less snobby dealers?
  • nedc2nedc2 Posts: 192
    More info can be found at:
    http://media.ford.com/article_display.cfm?article_id=13626

    As for why some people wouldn't want to drive a amnual transmission, I can't speak for everyone but from personal experience I can give a few reasons why I'm still undecided whether or not my next vehicle will come with an auto or a manual tranny:

    Ever try to use a clutch when your left great toe was broken?

    Ever try driving a manual with an arm in a sling?

    Dealing with 3 pedals in a narrow footwell while wearing size 12B insulated workboots during a lovely Northern Michigan winter is quite interesting.

    Short, and very steep hills, especially when you've parallell parked on them, Ann Arbor has lots of those.

    I still like manuals, especially with small engines cars, but there are some legitimate reasons to choose an auto, though I would really rather have a manual with an automatic clutch, Ford offers that option on some euro models, and get the best of both worlds.
    The 2.3l PZEV is gone for 2005, replaces by the Duratec 20e on CA, NY,NH etc. cars, it's slightly less powerful than the standard Duratec 20 but a little cleaner. The engines are about the same in pwer/displacement ratio as most other Japanese and European engines, except for some high output units like some Honda VTECs and the Yamaha built engine in the Toyota Matrix and Corolla. The Duatec 20 puts out 136 HP and 133 lb-ft of torque v. the Corolla's 1.8l putting out 130 HP and 123 lb-ft, mileage is 26/35 v. 32/40 with manuals respectively. The Toyota may have some advantage in efficiency, but Foci are a bit larger and heavier. The Focus is significantly roomier, especially in the rear seat and luggage area, and comes in a variety of body styles. Pick what fits you best.
  • mike91326mike91326 SoCalPosts: 245
    I was at my local Ford dealer last week and the sales manager told me that they would most likely be selling the Focus diesel in late 2006. He said that Ford is waiting for ULSD and wants to be able to sell it in all 50 states. He said the specs, based on the Euro Focus diesel, shows it getting 45 to 50 MPG. I would give almost anything for a car that got 50 MPG right about now.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    pay $22,500 for a Hybrid Focus, $19,500 for a diesel Focus and $3000 under sticker for a Focus PZEV.
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