Tailgate became hard to latch - dealer adjusted it and then it leaked. Took four further attempts to repair satisfactorily.
Scrubs the outside edges of the front tyres in about 7,000 miles despite three dealers and two independent tyre fitters checking the suspension alignment and proclaiming it to be "spot on"
Rattle from glove compartment.
CD player (model 2006) developed a loose connection in its security panel and would turn itself off over bumps.
Various creaks and squeaks inside.
Both rear wheel bearings replaced at 22,000 miles due to noise. This apparently affects many 01/02 MY Focuses according to the dealer as the hard wearing coating on a batch of bearings supplied to the factory was faulty.
What I like:
The engine is punchy and eager, the handling and ride are first class and the looks are still striking despite 5 years of being a common sight on our roads. It was clearly set up and tweaked by someone who loves driving, and was prepared to spend a lot of time tweaking and getting the feel of the steering and brakes spot on, just like the quality of the gearbox. They could have squeezed out another dull box like Vauxhall or VW with all the controls being light and easy, but they chose not to. Despite all my gripes with the car, I still consider this a hell of a plus point.
What I dislike:
Unfortunately, pretty much everything else. The dealers suck, the build quality is poor, the reliability below average, and the residual values a nightmare. Don't be fooled by the glossy front of the modern Ford dealership, nothing has changed. When you have a problem (and if this car is anything to go by, you will), they still won't want to know.
If you want a Focus, buy a 3 year old one for £5k and it makes a lot more sense. Buying new does not guarantee anything in terms of reliability or support, and you'll be stung big time when you try and resell it.