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Ford Focus Sedan



  • vic19vic19 Posts: 56
    Consumer Reports has a owner satisfaction score. Most cars score at least average. By definition most people have a favorable bias toward their cars -- they chose them, and people are not inclined to admit a mistake. But the Focus scored worse than average which is unusual and of course it's frequency of repair record is the worst attainable.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    I don't agree that the Escort looked outdated, nor do I think that the Focus is somehow more up-to-date. Looks are of course a matter of taste, and to my taste the Escort (I'm speaking of the 4-door sedan) was a better-looking car than the Focus. Moreover, the Escort had better visibility all around and was what it was meant to be, and what people bought it for: a simple, affordable, reliable car. The Focus, by contrast, is not so simple, not so affordable, and not nearly so reliable.

    I really think Ford should have kept the Escort - and the Contour too, for that matter. Escort - Contour - Taurus: a formidable lineup, so Ford discontinued the Escort, discontinued the Contour, redesigned the Taurus when it was the most popular car in its class, and then introduced the Focus before it was ready. Meanwhile, Explorers are turning upside down on the highway, and Crown Victorias are exploding on contact (a cop in Phoenix was recently burned to death in one in a minor accident). So I'm stuck with a reliable, quiet, smooth and responsive, uncomfortable Camry.
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    FYI, the Escort has remained in production until now, the Taurus sales went down before the 2000 redesign.

    The "formidible line up" with three sedans of 1998 didn't work, too bad, but it's a fact. Nissan had to make the Altima bigger, Ford refused to do so with the Contour, since it would cannibalize the Taurus, too bad. The old Escort was dated, if it wasn't, it would have outsold the Civic.

    That CV cop car got rear ended at 70 mph, not a "minor accident on contact". Thousands of CV's are running fine in taxi and police fleets and it has a 5 star rating all around. I dare anyone to prove that the car is a "fire bomb" with actual facts.

    The Explorer has been vindicated, so no more of that please.

    I agree that the Focus should have been released after the bugs were worked out, but I hardly think it's a flop.
  • vic19vic19 Posts: 56
    Ford lost about $5 billion last year. A chunk of that was the Explorer. If you're saying that the new Explorer probably is not subject to the roll overs in conjunction with Firestone tires that's probably true. But the public has shown considerable resistance to the new Explorer. It's grievously hurt Ford. It was one of the few vehicles it was making money on.
  • goofy10goofy10 Posts: 17
    I have a 2000 Focus SE ... recently the car started shaking when I hit 63mph. The shaking stops when I get to 70, but considering the speed limit is 55 around here I don't do 70 to often. Does anybody else have this problem?
  • kirbstoykirbstoy Posts: 53
    To:vadp (#833)...I went to the AllData web site in an effort to see the TSB on the "roll-over" problem. While they showed fourteen TSB's for the 2001 Focus ZTS, there was nothing about this problem. I then checked AllData for TSB's on 2000 Focus ZTS' and they didn't have anything either. So, can you tell me where you got the TSB number etc.? I'd like to follow-up on what the dealer has told me. Thanks for your assistance.
  • bigcompactbigcompact Posts: 33
    Have you ever rotated your tires? The shaking you refer to happened on my old Escort, and the cause of the problem was tires that had never been rotated. The uneven wear caused by this can cause rattling to happen at certain ranges of speed.

    Satisfied owner of a 2001 Focus SE Sport, 17,000 reliable miles put on since Labor Day, 2001
  • Definitely check the tires. Exactly what is happening to you happened to my parents a few years back in their Oldsmobile. The problem ended up being uneven wear in the tires.
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    Funny, the Explorer is still the #1 SUV for 2002 so far. So I don't think there is a "public resistance" to it.
  • vic19vic19 Posts: 56
    For the first 5 months of 2002 Ford sold about 157,500 Explorers. That's down over 20% from good years.

    The resistance can be see in the current $1,500 incentive offered by Ford.

    Explorer is a major contributor to Ford's currnet loses. Ford makes no money on car sales, all profits are from trucks of various kinds. The Explorer was until it's run in with Firestone one of Ford's few profitable lines.
  • heemadheemad Posts: 1
    Has anyone ever towed anything with the ZTS? I am looking to tow a small fishing boat with a total towing weight of just under 1000 pounds. I know the towing capacity is 1000 pounds. My question is how will the car react to the stress. I will only be towing about three to five times a month on very short trips. A couple long (four hour drives) each year in addition. Will I kill my car? I am looking for imput from those who have towed.

    Thanks in advance...
  • Manufacturers ususally understate towing capacities just to be on the safe side. I would think that as long as you took it easy, towing <1000 lbs a few times a month wouldn't be bad.

    This reminds me of last summer, when I was driving on the highway. I saw a Corolla <i>pass me, pulling a ~20 ft boat. I couldn't believe it. I especially had a hard time believing the front tires had enough traction to pull the car along - it looked like the shocks were fully extended.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    wow, 0.000130503 of Focus owners reported an engine stalling.

    less than (since it says also 2002) 0.000012180 of Focus owners (7 people out of 574700 people!) reported a suspension problem.

    I'm glad they're are looking into the problem, incase there is a real problem, but come on mdaff. Get tired of the retoric yet?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Well, I don't know about you but if I were one of those 7 people whose suspensions failed on them and caused me to get into an accident, I would never even look at another Ford product again. I would also be suing the pants off them too.
  • seminole_kevseminole_kev Posts: 1,722
    I can understand that. The thing is, they are investigating it. Who knows what the circumstances were. Hell customizing/moding the Focus is getting to be almost as popular as it is with the Civic, so who knows what the condition of those vehicles were. Like I said, glad they are looking at it, but statistcally, those numbers are nothing. Who knows what's going on with those vehicles until they look into it.

    That being said, you know meade's post was not to be helpful, it was just to be inflammatory
  • vadpvadp Posts: 1,025

    The fix is a new clutch disc with softer springs to dampen the gear roll-over knocking....
  • vadpvadp Posts: 1,025
    Here is a good explanation from the 'other' forum:

    "From what I had understood, the reason we have this problem is due to vibrations from our engine traveling down the input shaft at the transmission's natural frequency creates even larger vibrations inside the transmission, which in turn causes the synchro rings and set of idle gears to clatter.

    So that should still work to dampen the torsional irregularities or vibrations (since this is neutral gear rollover noise). Even when locked, it should still act as a spring dampener. Hmmm..."
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    Focus bugs make front page news, what about other brands? How do they fare in the NHTSA complaint dept? I'd love to see how many Kia Sephias.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    The Crown Victoria isn't a "fire bomb"? Another one just burnt to a crisp along with the cop inside - the appalling picture of the burnt-out heap is all over the newspapers of Arizona. The Arizona Republic for June 13, 2002 has the details, which you can get at:

    For a story of a cop in a burning Crown Victoria who perhaps was less lucky than the one who was killed, see:

    When we recall that this is the same company that made the exploding Pinto in the last generation, it seems that Ford and its executives should be investigated, not only by safety authorities, but by criminal authorities.

  • Have any Foci, while traveling at a high rate of speed, slammed into any traffic poles, which contain electrical wiring that could spark and ignite fuel especially if hit extremely hard, in the area of the vehicle where the fuel tank is located and burst into flames?
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421

    And they don't start investigations unless the problem has been reported by several owners.

  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    I realize that this is the Focus forum and I've already included links to articles detailing what happened to the Crown Victoria police cruiser which recently exploded in Arizona, burning the officer to death. I am only addressing this topic again because reference has been made to "traveling at a high rate of speed" as if that was the cause of the incident. In fact, speed was not involved.

    The officer was traveling in his CV cruiser on a local street in Chandler when a 72-year-old driver cut in front of him to make a left turn. The policeman tried to evade the car, which hit his cruiser on the side and spun it around until its rear collided with a lamppost and the cruiser exploded. No speed is mentioned, but how fast can a car making a left-hand turn be going? Moreover, the police cruiser was hit on the side, and probably was nearly stationary by then. In fact, it is precisely because the accident was so undramatic, and not involving high speed, that other police officers in Arizona are so upset and wondering how safe their CV cruisers are.

    As I was considering buying a CV, I too am wondering. As for the Focus, which was also on my shopping list, it may well be that CVs are dangerous because of the placement of their gas tanks, and that Foci have their gas tanks in a safer place. That would be a relief, certainly to owners of Foci as well as to prospective owners, so that should be the focus (excuse the pun) of the inquiry, not misattribution of the fatal accident to speed. I think it is also legitimate to wonder whether Ford is sufficiently concerned with the safety of its vehicles when some turn over, and others explode, and still others must be recalled many times soon after they are introduced.
  • mdaffronmdaffron Posts: 4,421
    i.e. still open. No conclusion yet.
  • george00george00 Posts: 81
    One investigation which is not open, at least in Phoenix, is whether Crown Victoria police cruisers are exceptionally dangerous. The Phoenix police department yesterday pulled all its CV cruisers off the streets to have their gas tanks replaced (or covered, the report was not clear) with protective material used in NASCAR races.

    Anyway, as I have now decided not to purchase a Focus, or any other Ford product until the company gets its act together (I have owned a Ford Escort station wagon, a Ford convertible (late 1950s - I forget the model), and a Mercury Marquis), this will be my last posting here. I will, however, remain haunted by a photo of last year's CV victim who has no face at all - it was burned off, leaving him looking like a horror movie monster. He may well think that last week's victim was luckier in not surviving (he has expressed the opinion that that accident, in which the CV exploded at low speed, was simply "ridiculous").

    The engineers, or bean counters, or whoever is responsible for reducing a great American company to what Ford has become should face criminal charges - though based on recent history, they're probably facing big bonuses instead.
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    There is no mention of low speed in the article regarding the most recent accident. Just because the woman in the Mitsubishi making the turn was probably driving slow doesn't mean that the Crown Victoria was also driving slow. Based on the description of the accident, I have a feeling that Crown Victoria was traveling at a pretty decent clip. The Crown Victoria was hit by the Mitsubishi and the considerable momentum of the Crown Victoria probably spun it counterclockwise into the pole. I've seen similar accidents where both cars were traveling at a low rate of speed. The results aren't nearly as dramatic - i.e., the car that was struck by the turning vehicle doesn't spin violently. There is nothing that proves this was a "low speed" accident. Plus, when the Crown Victoria hit that pole, it struck with tremendous force.

    As for the burned officer's opinion that the accident is "ridiculous" - it's just that, an opinion, and nothing more. Based on the article describing his recovery, I seriously doubt that he has the time and/or ability to make a serious inquiry into the facts of this accident.

    And the actions of the Phoenix Police Department prove nothing except that the Phoenix Police Department has enough time and money to alter the design of the fuel tanks in its police cars. Saying that proves the Crown Victoria is unsafe is like saying that precautions many businesses took when opening mail in the wake of the 9/11 anthrax incidents proves that we had an anthrax epidemic.
  • ikoiko2uikoiko2u Posts: 13
    Our 2000 Focus SE Sedan with 21000 miles is at the dealer for a complete brake overhaul: new rotors and pads. My wife is not a heavy handed driver. She drives with two children (5,3). In our car ownership experience we have NEVER had to the repair the brakes before the warranty period expired. Heck, my Subaru Outback has 40000 on the original brakes.

    The sad part of this is the dealer service rep said the brake replacement is chronic with Focus. The brake repair, coupled with the various TSR's that have come out since 2000, has convinced us to stay away from Ford products.
  • benjaminhbenjaminh Posts: 2,933
    I agree. I just traded in my Focus and bought a brand new Honda Accord. I got almost 4000 off of list price on the Accord, 4.75% financing, and they took that lemon Focus off my hands. You might want to check it out before you have more headaches down the road.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    My co-worker bought a used 2000 Focus SE with 40K miles on it. She has had nothing but headaches with the car since she bought it 5 months ago. The ignition key got stuck in and cost her $300, the rotors went up, and she has had trouble with grinding brakes since she got the car. I told her, when she was looking, not to check out the Focus (especially the 2000 models) because of their long history of recalls. She didn't listen, and how she's paying for it, literally.
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