Miles ahead of the Festiva, yet somehow NOT a Ferrari. It's just a Focus!
Right front wheel bearing went at around 70,000 miles.
Lost the transmission at 132,000.
Finally had to replace the factory brakes at... 117,000 (highway) miles.
The floor mat, carpet, and padding on the driver's side, are worn through in two spots from the heels of my shoes.
At 142,000, the suspension needs to be serviced for the first time.
The airbag lights come on from time to time, after a TV I was transporting slammed into the passenger dash while I was braking hard.
Driver's seat back cushioning is wearing out pretty badly, forcing me to admit to having a bit of a center lean when I drive.
Bought the car brand new from a dealer in Canton, Ohio back in late '07. SE model, with both the safety and convenience packages, and 5-speed transmission. 80% of the 142,000 miles are highway, hence being able to go over 115,000 miles on the stock brakes.
It's been to Iowa and back 4 times, D.C., NYC, Canada... even had a 2nd life in Pittsburgh for a while. 6 Ohio winters later, and still not a hint of rust. I even managed a trip to Pittsburgh with bald front tires during the winter of 2010 with no real issues in the snow... only bumped into one fence in Lawrenceville... (sorry).
It's certainly not a race car, and it's not quick enough to put a big smile on your face... but it's an entry-level Ford; if you expect more than entry-level performance, you're foolish. It's more than quick enough to gain speed on an entrance ramp to be above that of the traffic flow, and has ample passing power... though I've read that if properly set up, it can handle a 50 shot of nitrous with no reliability issues ;)... really want to try that one!
...but I digress. I beat the hell out of the car for the first year of ownership. I've had all four tires off the ground, and I've taught two people how to drive stick with it... so the tranny crapped out at 132,000, but I was lucky enough to have a mechanic who found a 5-speed out of an '09 Focus, with only 9,000 miles on it. That, and a new clutch and some bearings for good measure, and I'm hoping to get close to 250,000 before I have any more major problems. It surprises me to type this, but it's been a GREAT car. I plan to drive it until the wheels fall off... or I find a nice 94-96 Fleetwood/Roadmaster wagon to replace it with ;)
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 8th September, 2013