I'm looking through some old posts and I found one where I'd posted about Ford Focus(2001 with valve seat issue, in SPI engine not zetec) and had recommended no one buy a Ford Focus. It was a very long fight with the warranty company to replace the 2001's engine(it ended up being a used one which will have same issue, 2 shops and over a year and a half). This issue is among 2000-2004 with SPI engine. I don't think there are many on the road anymore. Don't recommend it if you find one. As I said in the other post, I have a 2007 focus and so far so good. Mostly maintenance, 3 repairs. I've been mostly driving Taurus's which I've had good service out of. I do really like the gas mileage out of the focus. I travel alot(lots of highway driving) and thought as first there would be no way I could stand to drive over a 1000 miles in such a small car. I took several smaller trips before taking the really big one. Of course, I had to get used to it. Especially stopping at truck stops to nap, etc. At first I could imagine how uncomfortable this was going to be. While it took some getting used to it wasn't nearly as uncomfortable as I thought it was going to be. My most comfortable travel car was a chevy impala though. The taurus isn't bad.
On a side note: After I replaced the motor mounts and sway bar links(front struts have been replaced, rear will have to be done eventually) I couldn't believe the difference in ride. Rides like new again. Couldn't believe it.
Unfortunately, the 2011 focus and newer have those crappy transmissions(dual clutch powershift, basically automated manual) that are terrible.
Anyway, I'm currently looking around as it won't be long until I'm in the market for another small car. I've checked out the Honda Civic. So far that's the one I like best. And it has great gas mileage. I just saw one of the new civic hatchbacks. I'm not too fond of it. It's kind of ugly. Haven't test driven a nissan yet. I have the corolla but the civic gets better gas mileage. Anyway, thought I'd update and put my thoughts out there.
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