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Available as a sedan, a hatchback, and an electric version, the Focus feels solid and sophisticated, but it's plagued by poor reliability and, at low speeds, a jerky transmission. The car is fun to drive, thanks to its agile handling and supple, controlled ride. The cabin is quiet, with good-quality materials for the class. But the driving position is narrow compared with newer competitors. A new 123-hp, 1.0-liter three-cylinder turbo, shared with the smaller Fiesta, is available, but it's slow and returns the same 29 mpg overall as the 2.0-liter. A rearview camera is now standard. Ford has replaced the problematic MyFord Touch infotainment system with the superior Sync 3 system. The sporty ST version is quick and fun, and sounds thrilling, and the new high-performance AWD RS comes with a 350-hp, turbo four-cylinder.

Road Test

Sporty handling, relatively low noise, and a well-done interior make the Focus feel more like a small sports sedan than a humdrum compact. Though not blazingly fast, the Focus does get good fuel economy: We recorded 29 mpg overall in our tests for bo...

Highs

  • Nimble handling makes it fun to drive
  • Supple and controlled ride and relatively quiet interior give the Focus a substantial feel, like a budget European sports sedan

Lows

  • Snug interior, with a cramped driving position and tight rear seat -- even compared to other compact sedans
  • Reliability has been below par

Best Version to Get

Ignoring the high-performance ST and RS versions, we would splurge on a top-trim Titanium with the 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. (Opting for the Titanium can wind up being cheaper than loading up an SE with similar equipment.) Even though we dislike that drivetrain's dual-clutch PowerShift auto...

Specifications

Seating
2 front, 3 rear
Drive Wheels
AWD , Front
Warranty
  • Basic: 3 year/36,000 miles
  • Powertrain: 5 year/60,000 miles
  • Rust through: 5 year/unlimited
  • Roadside aid: 5 year/unlimited
Body Styles
4-door hatchback
sedan
Transmissions Available
  • 6-speed Automatic
  • 6-speed Sequential
  • 1-speed Direct
  • 5-speed Manual
  • 6-speed Manual
Engines Available
  • electric (143 hp)
  • 1-liter 3 turbo (123 hp)
  • 2-liter 4 turbo (252 hp)
  • 2-liter 4 (160 hp)
  • 2.3-liter 4 turbo (350 hp)

Ratings

Safety
Performance
Comfort / Convenience
View Full Test Results