2005 Ford Focus ZX5 SES 2.0L from North America


Fun little commuter/trip car, get the manual, lots of cargo space and comfortable


Have owned the car for going on 6 years now, and have done lots of repairs I guess over the years. Outside of the usual maintenance, I'd say the things I've repaired are mainly just wear and tear. 2-3 years ago I did the front control arms and shocks, and had an alternator go out. This year did the thermostat and PCV hose. Have been able to do all the maintenance myself for the most part.

General Comments:

I enjoy this car very much. I specifically chose the manual due to the reviews saying to avoid the automatic and am glad I did. The manual makes it a bit more engaging to drive. I have fun on the highway on ramps. Other than that, it is a basic A to B car.

The SES has nice heated seats, and a sunroof. The hatchback is very roomy; have had an IKEA couch all apart in there, and a full size treadmill fits in there. Can carry 8ft long lumber by sliding it down from the back hatch into the front passenger wheel well. Lots of room; it's now almost as big as the newer crossover SUV vehicles.

All the interior has held up well. The seats were rough when I got it and are supposed to be leather, but feel more vinyl. Has cruise control. Very comfortable; have done multiple long trips in it and have sat for 12hrs driving (with breaks) as the seats are nice. I didn't think I'd own this car for as long as I have, and now when I look for a possible replacement I want to hold onto it even longer. The rust here in Canada has gotten to the sills, so is only a matter of time.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th October, 2020

2005 Ford Focus ZX4 ST 2.3 Duratec from North America


Reliable, inexpensive sporty car with below-average MPG


Clutch master cylinder leaked at 130,000 ($200).

Headlight plug corroded at 140,000 ($0, just needed silver grease).

General Comments:

Very reliable and sporty car, fun to drive, with cool trim pieces and interior accents. The gray color and red/black seats didn't look immature like the SVT Focuses I checked out. Oil changes were very easy to do with filter and drain bolt locations near the front. The car pretty much cost me nothing to run other than gas, oil, and brakes. I've had good luck with these Duratec cars, and switching to a timing chain only improved that. With the four-wheel discs, I even felt confident towing an 800lb (150lb tongue weight) trailer in the PA mountains several times without issue.

Some minor gripes:

- The 2.3L engine did not get great fuel economy, often 26-27 MPG for 50/50 driving with one passenger. I have a pretty light touch, got peaks of 36 MPG in my 2.0L Escort and 33 MPG in my 2010 Focus coupe so I don't think it's my driving. I blame the foam "lifetime air filters" installed in these cars that were likely very restrictive. I didn't own the car long enough to change it out for K&N cone, which is a popular modification said to help with this.

- The stick shift has a tricky reverse lockout, took a few days to get the hang of it. The other stick shift quirk is that the engine holds or gains revs if you shift slowly. This is apparently that same in the Ranger with this motor.

- The road noise in the car was higher than average, but lower than the deafening Escort I owned before this. The 2010 I have now is much quieter, the 2012+ Focus is even quieter.

Overall I would recommend this car if you need a little more power for more/larger passengers, towing, or passing, but looking for low running costs. This was far and away more fun to drive than a Corolla.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th February, 2019

3rd Mar 2019, 03:55

Given the tepid performance of the 2.0, the fuel economy hit with the 2.3 might be worth it.