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Ford Focus Wagon

limlim Posts: 1
Does anyone know about the reliability of the ford
focus wagon in Europe or where I might found out
about its reliability record in Europe?


  • herbieherbie Posts: 3
    That seems to be the one question that legions of skeptical buyers need answered. I too would like to know how this model held up in Europe.
  • joybjoyb Posts: 1
    Question directed at: Current owners or past owners of Ford Focus Wagon SE, would you recommend I purchase a Ford Focus Wagon SE? Have you had mechanical problems with the car? How does the car handle?
  • How can you compare car in Europe and here?
    In Europe most of them with 5 sp, here most of them with AT. In Europe average mileage 12000 km/year, here 12000 miles.. Different speed, different road conditions.
    Even if first year model doesn't have problem at all, are you sure that AT will last more than 6OK miles? Ford's AT not very reliable
  • rhodrhod Posts: 1
    I bought a Focus wagon 4 months ago. Within the first 30 days, I started to experiencing the same noises. I took the car in to the Ford dealership and they said they could not find a problem. 3 months later, the noises coming from the brakes and the rear got annoyingly louder. Also the back middle seatbelt stopped working where you could not extract it. Just recently I took the car back. It's in the shop now. They believe the cause of all these noises has something to do with faulty rear brake parts. So they said they are replacing it with upgraded rear brake parts for this vehicle. Once it's done, they will take it for a test drive to see if it will solve the problem. I hope this will help.
  • Knowing the reliability of a car from Europe is actually a good thing. The Focus for instance, the number one selling car there, is quite a reliable performer. Owmers have told me so. Particularly the 1.8 Zetec they have and the Turbo diesel we dont. The car is the same, with the exception of trim levels, and options. The suspensions are actually a little firmer on some models. And european roads are great to test a cars roadworthiness, for instance, the Autoroutes(High speed motorways) are impeccable. However the city streets are much older in a lot of places than anything in the US, and there are still many cobblestone streets. The driving habits in the city would be a workout for any car, particularly in Paris, London or Amsterdam , I have driven in all these cities and it is literally CUT THROAT! So in my opinion, something that can make it there, should be able to make it nearly anywhere.
  • leovyleovy Posts: 1
    I too am hearing these noises. Took it to the dealership and could not find the problem. Any luck finding what the problem was?
  • We have had the SE wagon for about a month now and have no complaints. Drive is very comfortable and responsive; noise level is very low (comparing my 97 Transport); gas mileage excellent (near published so far); handles well in rain (19 days straight til yesterday) and comfortable experience in snow one day.

    Seating (front) is excellent for us; it is first vehicle where I do not have to adjust the seat after my wife drives it and THAT is a bonus. The tilt/telescopic steering column is a plus on longer trips.

    For some reason today my speed control 'bit-the-dust'; looked in manual for fuse location but was no where to be found so I have to go to dealer. Hope that is all it is!!!!

    I have the Vetec engine and find it powerful enough for our purpose and it is not a problem to "keep up" with the traffic -- in fact, I find it sometimes wants to "extend it's legs" and fools me at the speed versus "feel like speed".

    Overall, very impressed. Hope it continues as the car ages.
  • rev4rev4 Posts: 38
    I've had my focus wagon since dec. 99 and have 9000 miles on it. LOVE THIS CAR. GET ONE IF YOU'RE THINKING ABOUT.
  • A lot of driving

    We've owned our Wagon for 4 months now, and have put 24000 km on it (that's 14,400 miles or so). A lot of driving. Some of it in beastly weather. We live at the end of an 1800 foot long driveway, and there have been a few mornings when we've had to bull our way through snowdrifts over the front fender (not recommended, by the way, you'll get snow in the engine compartment).


    So far, we've had a good experience with the Focus. There was a recall of Ford Focuses, but it didn't affect us (the recall was for rear brakes, interior trim, and cruise control, so if you've had problems with any of those, go to your dealer and find out if you're affected by the recall).

    The hood wouldn't close after a particularly cold morning, but it turned out the cable was just stiff with the cold. Ramming the hood release in and out from the interior of the car fixed the problem.

    A cold climate handled well

    The car handles cold weather well, starting easily, heating up quickly. Unlike our other car, the thermostat works.

    So far, we're really happy. Looks like we'll be putting on about 50000 miles per year, so we'll get a really good chance to see how reliable the Wagon is.

    For a more detailed review:

    There are also other great reviews there.

  • I've hd my new Focus wagon for about 2 months. Starting from about the 3rd week, I periodically get a "lurching forward" movement. The car doesn't actually move, but you can definitely feel a forward motion. This is especially true when you shift from 2nd to Drive (auto trns) when driving down a steep hill. (Movement occurs about 10 minutes after, not immediately after shifting.) However, it happens at other times without having shifted first. Any ideas?

    Also car handles tight right curves just fine, but tends to roll (for lack of a better word) on tight left curves. Again, any ideas? a13
  • I recently(12/19) bought a new 2000 Focus wagon. So far I love it! It was built 8/12/00 so escaped recalls. I researched the car extensively and have been reading these consumer comments as well. I have noticed that when I stop there is a slight vibration as car goes to idle while in drive. I asked Ford service guy about it and he says it is just how some 4-cylinders react at low idle. Anyone else have this experience? I'd appreciate feedback.
  • dawatdawat Posts: 5
    Just a word of caution - when the Ford Contour came out, all the reviewers praised it, partially because of its good history in Europe. I have one and it has had problem after problem, recall after recall. In fact, their reliability was so great that it was replaced 5 years after introduction with...the Ford Focus. Because of the problems I have had and the level of service I have received with the Contour, it will be a very long time before I trust a Ford product again. To be fair, I was initially impressed with the design aspects of the Focus and will be watching to see if its long term reliability lives up to its promises. But wait and see how the Focus does in THIS country, don't rely on Europe's indications.
  • unityunity Posts: 2
    Thinking seriously about getting the wagon. Are the ABS brakes a good idea? How does the interior walls and ceiling hold up, seems kind of cardboardy? Has Ford fixed all the problems that came up or resulted in recalls in 2000? Tough questions but would appreciate any comments.
  • I recently bought a new 2000 Focus Wagon. It was built 8/12/00 and delivered just under the wire or it would of been a 2001. My longtime (independent) mechanic didn't feel the ABS brakes were necessary, so not an option I purchased.Since I have not had the car very long, no info on ceilings/interior walls. However, the structure itself was built with safety in mind, and with all the research I have done, it seems a very safe vehicle, especially for its size. So far I am happy with the car. There's alot there for the $$ I previously owned a 1998 Contour. Like the Focus it was a new model in U.S. and had several recalls. I don't look at this as a negative as it is a preventative measure, so that a potential problem does not occur. I was totally satisfied with the Contour, and look forward to driving my new Focus. I recommend you consider the Focus. Good luck!
  • matcukmatcuk Posts: 8
    I bought my 2000 DE wagon in December of '99, and although I have been satisfied with it in general, I am *extremely* dissatisfied with the number of recalls-- four, to date, if I am remembering correctly. I don't have the notices in front of me, but I believe these involved a speed control cable, some kind of switch component (EGR?) in the engine, a retaining clip problem with the left rear wheel, and, most recently, a recall for problems with interior trim (A pillar). And not only that, I was told, when I ordered the car, that it was manufactured *after* the first two recalls had already been addressed, so I was considered "lucky."

    Even for a new model year, this seems like too many recalls. Does anyone know if there is any kind of compensation we can receive for all of these recalls? I have spent hours at the dealership. How many recalls need to be made on a vehicle before something like a class action suit is warranted?

    In general, I like the Focus, and will keep it, but my next car will probably be Japanese. Ford still cannot match the quality of the Honda I owned previously. Are you reading any of this, Ford? Do you care?
  • We have had our wagon since October, 1999. This means that it has been part of all the recalls. It goes in next week for the pillar.

    Other than the recalls, we have had no other problems with the car.
  • taratara Posts: 30
    Hello! I just wanted to introduce myself, my name is Tara and I've just started working for I'll be your new host for Station Wagons:)
  • I have had my Focus wagon (jackpot gold) for 4 months now.I have had one problem so far, the S.belt tension pulley had to be replaced because of bearing failure and also the belt was replaced by Ford,other wise a excellent wagon. I had mine sound coated when new and it extremely quiet. I have every option except ABS, which I did not want because of terrible problems I had with my 1998 windstar.This car really doesn't need ABS unless you live in the snow belt.

    Just a note for my American friends,my wagon being a Canadian edition,it does not come standard with the Zetec engine,I had to get a package to get the Zetec as a option. The standard engine is the 2.0 litre 110 HP.

    And of coarse our prices are a lot more than yours.Mine was priced out at $23,400.Thanks for listening
  • hotx3hotx3 Posts: 71
    This came on 6 weeks ago, then went out after a week. A week later it came on again, and the engine would run rough occasionally. The light even blinked a couple of times (manual says to slow down or you'll overheat the emissions controls).
    Yesterday, the car just died as I went around a corner - when I restarted it, the light was off, and the car now runs ok (KOW). What gives? Mine is a March 2000 LX. Could this be the EGR(?) recall mentioned earlier (I never got a notice)? I've seen other postings about this light, but their dealers claimed it was bad gas or a loose fuel cap. My dealer has offered to hook up his OBD reader (for $90), and I even scheduled it in, but now that the light's off, what will he find? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
  • I don't have a Focus (it's on my shopping list, that's why I'm lurking), but in my experience, you're just wasting your money trying to diagnose an intermittent problem when the problem doesn't show itself when the car's in the shop.
  • dweezildweezil Posts: 271
    What should be a warranty repair or diagnosis of a problem?? Go to a different dealer. He doesn't seem to want to get your return business if he's already chiseling 90.00 out of you to put this car on a scope!!!!
  • hotx3hotx3 Posts: 71
    I thought so too, that's why I resisted bringing it in. I talked to a different service rep (same dealer) and he said "Of course we'll cover that under warranty." Turns out it was a faulty exhaust gasket for the rough running and a new cyclinder head for the emissions light(!). I'm glad Ford is taking care of this, but I shouldn't have to work so hard to get them to find their problems. The customer service number insisted there were no tsb's or anything, but the direction to change the head came from Ford. It's scary to think what other problems will pop up - I thought this was a proven engine. I've had good luck with Fords in the past, but...
  • adryan13adryan13 Posts: 2
    I had the exact same problem with the engine light on, etc., on my 2001 Focus station wagon. Dealer handled everything under warranty, but took well over a week to get the part. Now the piece at the end of the seat track (track to move seat back/forth...) has come off. Just the decorative end cap, but it's still annoying. Otherwise I love the car.By the way, what's "sound coating?" Focus does seem to have a little high road noise.
  • hotx3hotx3 Posts: 71
    Adryan13: Thanks for the reply. Did they replace the cylinder head and gaskets? I've been waiting 10 days for one of the gaskets. Don't really want to drive it with a supposed leaky head, so I'm driving the gasguzzlinvacationvan :( .
    Sound coating is a polymer undercoating similar to rustproofing. Sometimes they also inject it into cavities (on your car!). Caveats are similar to rustproofing - drilling of holes and creating points for water to collect. I don't have it, but I'm half deaf anyway, so my wife tells me.
  • perry40perry40 Posts: 94
    My mother-in-law is visiting from out of town this week & she drives an 01 Focus Wagon which she traded a 99 Hyundai Elantra Wagon on last summer ... don't know why, the 'lantra was perfectly O.K. ... I think her boyfriend talked her into it 'cause he didn't like Hyundai's or something? Anyhoo, long story longer, mom-in-law now has 21,000km on her Focus and has had her fair shair of trouble with the car ... runs poorly in wet/snowy weather, brake chatter & squeal (dealer says there's nothing wrong with the brakes), loss of power when driving up grades, electrical glitches, etc. The car looks good & has gobs of room, but I wonder about it's reliability & build quality ...
    B.T.W. Isn't the plural of Focus "Foci"?? ;)
  • joee1joee1 Posts: 16
    I've really been considering an '01 Focus wagon with anti-lock brakes and side air bags.

    That is until I read the comments on this web site.

    Should I just forget it and look for a more expensive wagon?

    I'm hoping to buy by the end of April '01
  • jjc5jjc5 Posts: 16

    I'm the owner of a 2000 SE wagon, approx. one year old, with 9000 miles (I just commute locally), and I love it. I have had two recalls -- the rear wheel problem and the A-pillar -- and no further problems. The car handles well in snow and ice, I get good gas mileage -- 25 city/29 highway -- and I haven't had a serious problem yet, knock on wood.

    I would recommend this car to anyone looking for a small station wagon, with as much cargo space as the VW Passat (yes, it's true), with good features at an excellent price.

    If you are looking for a little extra pizzaz, the wagon also comes in the Street Edition, and the soon-to-be-offered ZTW trim, the ZTS version of the wagon.

    P.S. I do recommend the ABS and the Advance Trac. My fiance has the ZX3 with the Advance Trac and it performs amazingly well in the snow. Remember, a fully-loaded wagon (even in the new trim levels) still is 4-6,000 cheaper than a entry level Passat.
  • kelly5mpvkelly5mpv Posts: 11
    I wish all of you luck. Really I do. But when your wonderful wagons hit 40,000 miles. You will be sorry. The 7 biggest mistakes of my life.
  • boccebbocceb Posts: 2
    I have owned my Focus Wagon for 14 months now and I am very dissapointed in the reliability of the vehicle. 4 recalls so far and numerous other problems: 1. Rattle in the rear of the car that they can't find. The dealer said my shock mount was cracked, they replaced it, but the rattle is still there. 2. I have a leak that happens on downpours that they still haven't been able to find. The car goes back in the shop this week for the leak. 3. Gas gauge stopped working one day, they replaced the gas pump. 4. Windshield washer jet needed to be replaced. 5. The brakes squeal - no problem found. Other than that, I like the way the car drives. I just think its in the shop too much for a new car. By the way I have 27000 miles on it, and I bought the extended warranty which was a good move. I use synthetic oil and change it every 5000 miles. I'm hoping this car will last me 5 or 6 years. More to follow...
  • jjc5jjc5 Posts: 16
    For those of you experiencing a rear rattle, look closely at your license plate. If you only have two screws at the top securing the plate, install the other two screws at the bottom. You might be surprised by the results!
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