2013 Ford Focus ST: Vegas Road Trip, Part 1
July 30, 2013
Recently, a group of Edmunds employees (including me) traveled to the Zappos.com offices in Henderson, Nevada. Zappos is renowned for its strong company culture and unorthodox office space, so we Edmundsians took a tour, hoping to gain some inspiration. Since I prefer driving to flying and Las Vegas is just a couple hundred miles away, I seized the opportunity to drive there.
After packing the night before, I got up before the sun and set off in our long-term 2013 Ford Focus ST for the Zappos headquarters, 273 miles away.
The drive from Southern California to Las Vegas on Interstate 15 can be boring, but I kept myself entertained with the usual mix of podcasts and excessively loud music.
Our Focus ST's 10-speaker Sony audio system (part of the $2,505 Group 201A option package) is great for rocking out until you twist the volume knob to about 75-percent capacity. After that, it loses bass and clarity and begins to distort. Three hours into the trip, I crossed the Nevada state line, and it was time for a brief stretch.
It was already well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit so I hopped back in the air-conditioned ST as quickly as possible. Less than an hour later I arrived at the Zappos.com offices in Henderson and joined my co-workers for the tour. Zappos does indeed have a very lively workplace with decorations everywhere.
The company even has a disco ball that it dares visitors to activate in the lobby. We didn't hesitate.
The executive cubicle area (named Monkey Row) is one of the more unique areas.
Zappos has no dress code other than ties. No ties are allowed, so here's the collection of ties that have been punitively cut off over the years.
Full of zeal, ideas and complimentary root beer floats, we departed Zappos and headed to lunch. I ferried fellow Edmunds employees Josh and Stephanie to a restaurant a few miles away. Stephanie commented that the air conditioning wasn't getting her cool fast enough and I reminded her we hadn't left the parking lot yet, and it was 116 degrees outside. Passenger complaints eventually subsided as the Focus ST began to cool down with relative haste (especially considering the conditions).
After eating and recapping our tour, most of our group headed back to Los Angeles on a plane. I hopped in the Focus and headed to the Las Vegas Strip. The ST was easy to drive around town and the satellite navigation guided me seamlessly to the hotel parking lot.
I won't dwell on the Recaro seats, as it's a topic I've covered before, but after my road trip experiences in this car, I'd never buy a Ford Focus ST with the optional Recaros.
My focus then shifted to the blackjack tables and the poker room. Wish me luck.
Travis Langness, Associate Editor @ 15,700 miles