After owning my Ford Focus Trend for nearly 3 years, I feel like I’m in a great position to torque about what makes it a great car.
I bought this car in 2016 after learning to drive in my Dad’s Focus (the same model but his is silver and mine is red so mine obviously goes faster).
Most of my driving is done on my daily commute to and from work, and it’s wheely easy to load up and go. The reverse sensors make parking easy and the car is small enough to fit in even the tightest shopping centre parking spot.
Inside, it’s fuel of great features that are practical and easy to use. All of the infotainment and driver information are clear and simple and it’s no trouble to make a phone call or play music through the SYNC Bluetooth system. The SYNC system does look a little dated when compared to more recent Focus models and other hatches in the segment… I prefer the term “pre-Apple CarPlay retro chic”.
I’m a firm believer in the ‘driver picks the radio’ approach to life, and between the radio/AUX input and the surprisingly beefy speakers, audio is always clear and fast.
Well planned out storage in the glovebox and boot are much appreciated, and it’s also surprisingly well serviced in the snack holder – some people call these cup holders – department which is a big tick from me!
The seats are comfortable and easy to adjust, although I have found the cloth seats a little difficult to clean – Pavlova versus tight corner; the seat did not win.
As someone that has virtually no legs, rear leg room has never been an issue if I’m sitting in the back. Some of my vertically blessed friends have said that it can be on the tighter side, though. Another comment passengers have pointed out is the lack of air vents or access to power/USB charging for the back row.
The quality of interiors has held up relatively well for a five year old car. The plastics around the dash and doors aren’t the highest quality but they’ve lasted and are easy to clean when required.
When it’s time to hit the open road, the Focus feels sporty and fun to drive. I can normally get around 550km per tank which costs me around the $50 mark – I have noticed that the km/L skyrockets during long trips, sometimes getting up to around 750km during a big drive.
Where the car is let down however, is the transmission – a la Ford’s much fabled PowerShift transmission. I’ve had a couple of issues with the transmission and dual-clutch system in my time owning the car, and to Ford Australia’s credit they’ve always happily taken the car in and fixed any issues.
My fellow Focus drivers will know what I mean when I say it sometimes feels as if it’s part Jekyll, part Hyde. One day the transmission will be smooth and handle corners like its sporty older sibling, the Focus RS, and the next it’s shuddering its way around a bend on its last legs.
I find the Focus a really fun car to drive, however the transmission issues have definitely put a dent in the ownership experience. It’s definitely no V8 1000-cylinder turbo hot-hatch, but it is easy to enjoy being behind the wheel.
This has been a zippy car to own that is both cheap to run and fun to drive. It’s practical, safe and well-equipped and suits my lifestyle perfectly.
Looking ahead, lifestyle changes in the coming years may see me upgrade to something bigger, however for the time being the Focus is a great car to own and drive!