Re: The car's saving grace is that it is free as it's my company car & I'm glad to say it's temporary until a more permanent vehicle arrives.
I don't know what company you work for, but a company car certainly isn't free! In fact I am shocked you have a 1999 car as a 'company car' - normally this 'perk' is reserved for brand new cars which you get to keep for at *most* 3 years.
Anything over this and you personally still get taxed with a 'benefit in kind' of 1 third of the brand new cars MRRP each year.
You are being seriously shafted in paying shedloads of unnecessary tax on a car that is probably only worth peanuts (1.4 CL - the lowest spec possible Focus), and clearly has never been looked after or serviced by your company.
I would take this up with the taxman and your boss! You are being shafted.
Comments: "only high 20's to the gallon" & "no grip on wet roundabouts"
You clearly have the very base model car in the focus range, and they are a relatively large car for a 1400cc engine. I'm not sure exactly what kind of performance you were expecting from this engine car combo, but it was never going to be great.
The focus is a great car, and you really need to be realistic of what is possible for a given cost... I doubt any other car of the same size would be better with a 1400cc, or handle better with the base model wheels.
I wouldn't have another Ford Focus even if it was free.
I bought mine back in January 2010 and have done nothing but pay out. It loses power while driving, you hear knocking noises from everywhere, it eats your petrol.
The only good thing about it is it's a great looking car.
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