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2008 Ford Focus future vehicle

24

Comments

  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    is most likely also due to the ST's poor sales. Ford ruined the ST's appeal by not keeping the delicious meaty pwr steering & comfy front seats (oh yes, pwr seat-height adjustment as well!) from the SVT Focus when switching to the ST sedan!

    Fuel economy wise, Focus' Mazda-developed engines already failed to match the similar ones fit into Mazda vehicles. Besides, 2.3 consumes way more fuel than 2.0 by using the inevitable energy-wasting balance shafts.

    By the way, rest of the world never had a chance to use smooth & reliable Mazda-developed motors in the nimble-size C-170 Focus. & they've never heard of anyone lucky enough to own any Focus w/ a factory-installed 2.3 naturally aspirated engine. :P

    & I told them, "Duh, every 2004 Focus sedan sold in California had a 2.3!"
  • I, also, lament the 2.3's passing. The 2.3L/hatchback was an incredible performance value (I think it was dropped over a yr ago.) However, perhaps it's for the best. Edmunds comparison-tested a Mazda3/2.3L and the fuel economy was on the low end......I don't understand why the wagon was dumped. Perhaps small families are more apt to buy compact SUVs or crossovers.
  • Re: "I don't understand why the wagon was dumped. Perhaps small families are more apt to buy compact SUVs or crossovers."

    Can you say EDGE? I think Ford doesn't want to steal any sales from the new EDGE CUV, though it's in a different class, IMO.
    Ford needs to cut costs across the line and dumping the wagon is one way to do that.
  • corcor Posts: 27
    Is it me or does the 're-designed' Focus look like the 98-03 Escort series? It appears as if they simply re-skinned the old Escort, threw in a new interior and called it a Focus. They had such a winner when it [Focus] was introduced in 2000. I didn't care for the re-fresh in '04 and this new look DEFINITELY does nothing for me either. It looks like Ford has once again got it WRONG! If they were smart, they'd bring over the European model instead of sticking the U.S. with a [non-permissible content removed] of a design.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    Ha! Ha! This is called "Detroit-izing" guys. Only the platform is really from an import (German, actually), just like the Mazda6-platform Fusion.

    The styling of the 98-03 Escort series was just a baby-sized Taurus (read jelly bean) done in America. It wasn't bad looking though, just a little unmatching at the side-window area. :)

    The only thing cool about our '05 Focus facelift was the front end (European Mondeo), but ugly else where.

    The 91-97 (U.S.) Escort was not called Escort around the world. It was really a Japanese-engineered Mazda 323 (Protege) w/ sharper styling & called "Ford Laser" in places like Japan/Australia/Taiwan. I even saw one badged as "Mazda 323" in Taiwan. The U.S. version (Escort) never shared their front-grill shape though.

    In Europe, they had a completely unrelated Escort back then. In '91, some European car magazine said that our Japanese-version might just be a better car than theirs.
  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    Is it me or does the 're-designed' Focus look like the 98-03 Escort series?

    I think it's just you because I see very little resemblance.
  • corcor Posts: 27
    It's still the most heinous re-design ever! But then again this is why they [Ford] are in their current position; they build cars for the tasteless masses. This, like many Ford products, is a car that I wouldn't even want to RENT!
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "...a car that I wouldn't even want to RENT!"

    Gosh, good point. As of today, my early-production '05 Focus ST is still suffering from a nauseating rubber smell coming out of the dashboard vent, which the dealer denied as a problem & called it "normal new-car smell". I asked another '05 Focus driver if he's having the same problem. & he said, "Yes, that's why I have the windows rolled down. It's a rental car anyway."

    The brand-new '07 models I test drove did not have any of it, as if the dealer was full of it.

    The merged-company Volvo insisted that all interior material must be allergenic free. & Ford did the same claim just a few years ago, as if they listened to Volvo.

    So do give the Focus a break. The '07 Focus is still a beautiful piece of German-engineered classic built in the U.S.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "Is it me or does the 're-designed' Focus look like the 98-03 Escort series?

    I think it's just you because I see very little resemblance."

    Saying the 're-designed' Focus looking like the 98-03 Escort series is still a compliment. No, it doesn't look like it! Your memory was wrong. You should remember now -- it closely resembles the disgusting Temple/Topaz so gross looking only arrogant American car makers dare to present to the world.

    When China, the highest-potential auto market in the world, originally requested the western world to help them building their "people's car", Mercedes presented a stripped-down A-class, Porsche designed a 4-dr compact from ground up, & Chrysler simply shoved the Neon at them w/o a bit of shame. :P
  • my gripe is that we don't have the european focus period.
    such a better car, yes i know the business case differs but if in europe the mazda3 and the focus can be sold side by side the same should hold for the U.S. market.
    also on engine sizes, it's disgusting that there's such a power mongering mentality-yes i love power and performance- in the north american market(not including canada). 1.6 litre focus handles just as well and is remarkable with gas milege.
    anyway, hope this redesign signles FomCo will renew its commitment to the focus and other such cars.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "...they build cars for the tasteless masses."

    So most American car buyers are tasteless? You know, initially, I didn't understand. But the more I thought about it...I really think they picked the clumsy styling only to look domestic, as these people are traditional buyers who don't want imports. Besides, even Hollywood movies don't use Japanese cars to play the main role. & guess which car won in the Tokyo Drift?

    The more I looked at the next Focus sedan, the more I see Impala's little bro. So, yo, it's cool to look like a Chevy.

    It's also cool not to look cute. That's why there's the Dodge, who has a Caliber, which sounds just perfect for "drive by shooting" & will kick the imports' [non-permissible content removed]. & there's the Ram that will ram you over. Plus the Raider (em, sounds like the macho American sport) that foreigners' foot ball (soccer) just seem sissy by comparison. :P

    Yep, American SUVs rule. They rule the road so these little imports better install head-curtain airbags or, better, simply get out of the way.

    In my final word, The United States just lost the original German-styling C-170 Focus. But if you really want the new super-sized C-1 Focus & live close to the Mexican border, then pick one up just miles away & drive across.
  • bobw3bobw3 Posts: 2,997
    what's up with that vast area of flat blank plastic above the glove box? You think they would put an additional smaller storage area in that location, and put some additional cubbies and open storage areas in the dash instead of being so cheap and providing no place to put anything.
  • hwyhobohwyhobo Posts: 263
    also on engine sizes, it's disgusting that there's such a power mongering mentality-yes i love power and performance- in the north american market(not including canada). 1.6 litre focus handles just as well and is remarkable with gas milege.

    I could not agree more. I drove a European Focus with a 1.4l engine from Vienna, through Germany, Switzerland, Italy, back and forth through the Alps, no problem with lack of power ever. Handled beautifully. I don't understand the mentality in Detroit either. Oh, and BTW, I don't like the Focus C-MAX. It's way too big compared to the original. If Detroit just brought the original German Focus with 1.4 or 1.6 engine, instead of "Detroitizing" it and making it feel as cheap as a Korean VCR, perhaps its ultimate fate would have been different.
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    are the only Euro-market Mazda3 & C-1 Focus w/ conventional hydraulic pwr steering. No wonder it felt all right to you, but still not quite the good stuff you'd find in the old C-170 SVT/ST170.

    Most American drivers don't got the skill to drive stick, therefore will need somthing larger than 1.4/1.6. So even if the C-1 comes here w/ 2.0, its electro-hydraulic pwr steering is not something to be excited about.

    By the way, Detroitizing is no Korean VCR. Here's Ford's explanation:

    "We've taken cues from fashion and home design and translated them into a more upscale Focus interior," says Zaback. "We've given it some sophistication and flair by adding touches of silver metallic finishing like you see in today's home appliances, and used materials that provide a higher-quality feel to surfaces and touch points throughout the car. The overall package is simply more inviting."

    More inviting to where? Your kitchen & look at a Whirlpool dishwasher? American Ford designers are not car enthusiasts; they're sissy kitchen enthusiasts. Why would you want your car to look like a kitchen? :mad:
  • don't got the skill -- Some of us American drivers are able to drive manual cars and care about the environment. My wife and I both drive five speeds and vowed to never buy a car that gets less than 34 highway MPG. The two biggest reasons are we don't like to fund terrorist or contribute to Global Warming. I do not like the Fusion front but overall the new Focus makes me wish I had waited before purchasing one. I bought an 06' and might have to trade it in.
  • My problem with the car is illustrated very well in your pictures--it's the rear fenders. I mean, I'm not a fan of the front fascia either, but the rear fenders are painful. They make the rear tires look so tiny.

    I understand the business reasons to use the existing platform for another three or four years, but there are significant business reasons to NOT continue to turn out one refresh after another on the same tired car. We are in the middle of a small car resurgence. All the major imports are redefining the low ends of their portfolios. And you have a lot of people coming to showrooms looking at the new Fusion who may decide they don't need that much car, so you need to have something there that will catch their eye. And more than anything for Ford, you need a car to generate some positive buzz--the benefits of which for that company right now can't be calculated in mere sales numbers.

    And while beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I'm wagering that most buyers aren't going to look at this design and see a lot of beauty. They are going to see a car that is every bit as plain and modest as what they have come to expect from Ford, and so they are not going to attract the young, trendsetting people they need to try to get in the Ford stable right now.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,452
    please explain your post some more, do you mean 34 mpg epa or real world average mpgs? is your car pzev rated? :confuse:
  • I like the current Focus well enough to own a 2005 ST. It's not pretty, but it does look purposeful and European. The ST is a real joy to drive. The 2005-2007 Focus certainly looks better in person than it photographs. The tall architecture makes for great interior room, but also makes the wheels and tires look smaller than a lower slung car like the Civic.

    The new 2008 has much more surface detail going on, maybe too much as the front end looks fussy to me. The '08's higher beltline does look longer, but the tires and wheels still look small. Perhaps it too will look better in person than in photographs, but it doesn't appear to have been a winner on the Detroit exhibit floor where people did see it in the flesh.

    I understand the business case for simplifying the model line, but the 2008 refresh may be too little and the 2010 total redo may be too late for Ford. The interior appears to be a big step up from the 2005 refresh. I just don't know if the outside styling will get enough people to sample that new interior.

    The real Ford news may be that a new B-class (next size smaller than the Focus) is slated for the US market no later than 2009. The B-class may be where Ford's limited money and resources are focused. I've got my fingers crossed, Ford is running out of time for a hit.

    No matter how good the 2008 Focus is, the new Saturn Astra is going to get more attention and is likely to seize the space that could have belonged to a truly new Focus. Ford lacks momentum. GM for all its troubles has more mo and more hope. A Saturn Corsa may not be far behind the Astra. Ford has to be better than the new Corsa and Yaris. Equal or also ran will not be enough.
  • Ford has their site with more information and images...

    2008 Ford Focus
  • creakid1creakid1 Posts: 2,032
    "Bring the new Euro Forus to America. Don't tell us it's too big. Don't tell us it's too 'upscale'. Give us a car we are ASKING to buy."

    The grass is always greener on the other side, but is it really?

    Our '08 Focus may be embarrassingly ugly. But Europe's bulky expensive alternative isn't as mighty as you think, especially when the nose is heavier than 4 cylinders:

    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/evocarreviews/61251/ford_focus_st.html
    "However, the ST can't disguise its turbocharger as effectively as the Golf. There's small but noticeable lag when you first get hard on the power, and between full-bore shifts the engine takes a moment or two to catch its breath and resume the accelerative fireworks. Through a sequence of corners where you're often switching between strong throttle applications and then calling on some useful engine braking, the delivery can get a little jerky, too.

    The ST's ESP system has to work hard to contain the power despite the broad 225/40 R18 Continental rubber. And although it's certainly very efficient at trimming any excesses, you soon feel that it's perhaps a little too eager. Switch it out and the front tyres can easily be overwhelmed once you've clipped an apex and gunned the engine. Eke out the power more gently and the ST stays nice and neutral, and only when the corner has really opened out and you hit full power do you feel the front wheels tugging from left to right.

    Torque-steer in a front-drive car of this potency is almost unavoidable, and the Focus is certainly no more prone to it than, say, the Mégane Trophy. Even so, you sense that Ford has tried to soften the effect before it reaches the steering wheel. The result is that much of the textural feedback that you'd experience in a cooking Focus has been lost.

    Push harder, give the engine a free rein, and that five-cylinder unit really begins to dominate. In terms of raw speed it's very impressive, effortless when you're stroking it along and relentless when you're asking for all it's got to give. Unfortunately, for all the power it generates on the straights, it seriously hampers the ST through the corners.

    The nose-heavy balance and fairly marked body-roll means that understeer arrives earlier than expected, and it's pretty tricky to neutralise completely. Get out of the throttle and the weight shifts, unloading the rears and progressively restoring grip to the front tyres. It all feels great, until you realise that the Focus's inherent adjustability isn't enough to fully overcome the weight up front. By mid-corner the rear tyres are gripping again and the fronts are pushing-on, away from your chosen line and bleeding away the bulk of the forward thrust through rampant wheelspin.

    If you've got the room and the right corner ahead of you, the ST can be made to steer from the rear rather than the front, but it takes a fairly extreme lift-and-lob or heavy braking into the heart of the corner to unsettle the car enough to need opposite lock. In the real world this is not such a huge problem, but the fact that when you're driving quickly and smoothly the ST predominantly understeers and feels just a fraction stodgy is disappointing.

    I'm loath to criticise the ST because it really is an excellent package. There's ample performance, it looks great and the ride and general feel of the car at anything up to eight-tenths is spot-on. As a car to own, I think it would be a pleasure. However, just when you want it to throw off its sensible shoes and goad you into really going for it, the ST gets a little sulky, a little detached. The Golf GTI remains the benchmark.

    evo RATING:
    +: Value, performance, integrity
    -: Big engine compromises handling"

    No wonder the Mazdaspeed3 didn't follow the big bros -- Volvo/Ford -- & used 4-cyl turbo instead.

    Perhaps that's why Ford didn't even bother to import the C-1 Focus here, where buyers are too cheap to pay higher than Fusion's price unless it's got a Mazda/Volvo badge.
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