2001 Ford Focus SE 2.0 Ztec
Surprisingly reliable, especially for an American car
First, normal maintenance stuff.
Didn't change the timing belt until 194k, and it looked like new. BUY THE TWO SPECIALTY TOOLS for replacing the timing belt. The cam positioning bar, and crank pin alignment tool. Then replacing the timing belt and accompanying parts is super easy.
The car has been loaned to several family members. As a result this car has been wrecked several times. Had to replace driver's side tie rods, wheel bearings, eventually all wheels, numerous sets of brakes, fourth set of front brakes, second rear. Never have had the engine apart or the head off and it just purrs. It is on its third upper engine mount next to the timing belt.
The lower auxiliary driving lights are poorly designed and made, and break easy.
The door locks are junk and I've had to replace them all once and the front passenger door lock twice. Real cheap plastic, and damn near impossible to work on!
The inside fan motor is easy to access thank God, because it's on its third motor. Also it's burned out three fan resistors.
New clutch at 164,000, $650, and a new fuel pump at 215,000, to the sum of $1140, which I thought was absurd!
Ironically the engine is the strongest part of the car. The electrical system is this car's biggest weakness. And an abundance of cheap poorly made plastic parts throughout. Although this was an early model and I understand a lot of the problems were resolved over the years.
I have always been an import car guy and have owned European and Japanese cars, I've owned British (electrical nightmare), German, and a VW Bug (1974) that had it a better defroster and A/C, I'd still be driving it. Datsun (1977, 620 P/U) for 14 years, best car I ever owned, hard to believe what Nissan makes now! Honda, Civic and Accord, what's there to say, they're Hondas! Toyota P/U with 22RE, bullet proof and easy to maintain, and a 98 Dodge Ram 3500 SLT, Dually with Cummins 5.9 12 valve. Bulletproof engine, the truck is a typical American vehicle, an electrical abortion!
My wife bought the Focus prior to our meeting and brought it into the marriage. I would never have bought a Ford, especially in those years. But I have to say any vehicle that will go 200,000 plus miles on the original engine without ever being apart is good solid engineering. Like I said, the engine is the least problematic part of the car. So the 64 dollar question, would I buy it again, yeah I suppose I would. It's stood up to being the first car for two boys, and that says a lot! It's been wrecked, hit by a semi, ran into a parked car, and driven through a garage door (that was down!).
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 13th August, 2017