2003 Ford Focus Wagon Review | Edmunds.com

2003 Ford Focus Wagon

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
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Ford Focus Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 130 hp @ 5300 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 22/28 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2003 Ford Focus

  • The 2003 Ford Focus is a wonderful small car that's fun to drive, frugal with fuel and offered in such a wide variety of configurations it would be hard not to find one that suits your needs.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Thoughtful ergonomics, large interior, smooth ride, sharp steering, impressive selection of body configurations and features.

  • Cons

    Seats aren't comfortable for everyone, below-average reliability.

  • What's New for 2003

    Minor changes are in store for the 2003 Ford Focus. Two new trim levels increase the breadth of prices for Ford's economy car; a base trim for the three door hatchback renders air conditioning optional and only comes with a manual transmission. For the five door hatchback, a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, cruise control, front reading lights and a center console are available when you step up to the comfort trim level from the base level. Heated front seats are a new option, as is a traction control and ABS package. New colors for the exterior brighten up the color palette, and the interior is freshened with two new fabric trims. Finally, a CD/MP3 player is now standard on the ZX3 and ZX5. A SVT version of the ZX5 is also scheduled to appear later in the year.

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Gas Mileage

EPA-Rated MPG

  • 22
  • cty
/
  • 28
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews


3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Clear sailing

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus ZTW 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

I love this car. The only issue is that it is rough on tires. I normally get about 40K out of a 60K tire. I average 26-27mpg in the winter and 29-32mpg the rest of the year. I have 149900 miles on my car. I have not experienced many of the issues that others have, but then I bought mine new and know what it has gone through. If you do the maintenance when the owner's manual says to do it then you will have very few problems. Word to drivers the rotors are not the best, but the pads are really good so if you have worn out your brake pads, that is on you. I went 89K before having to change rotors and it was a mountain pass that did in the rear brake pads.



1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Awsome! then you have the

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus ZTW 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

this car has been great to me, i bought it used with 30.000 miles. the guy put a K&N and loud exhaust... sounded great, until i got caught with it (illegal in my state). the only problem with it was the alternator. except it was not, it was a fuse in between the alternator and the motor. Then the paint peeled, spotted, bubbled, and cracked on the bumper. the paint peel happened on the hatchback. right above the light. the BLACK car now had WHITE spots on the back. and the rear bumper is full of very small cracks. None of this is because of lack of care, i and very ocd on apperance.



2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Terrible

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus SE 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

bought this at 81,000 miles was good until about 85,000. New motor mount, then a new engine, then a huge exhaust leak, then the engine was misfiring, then had to take it back to ford to get the lifters replaced, now i am waiting on it in the shop because they had to replace the instrument cluster. a total of about 5,000 in repairs in just a year. It's rediculous! i spend more time without a car then i do with one. I just barely hit 97k miles!




Good fuel efficency and lots

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus ZTW 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

I bought my car as a rebuilt vehicle over a year ago. It had 12K miles on it. Now it has 36000 miles and i have not yet had a problem with it. I get around 27 mpg average (city and highway). I love this car because it gives good fuel economy and can haul a lot of stuff. I use it to take my dogs to training and i can hold 3 crates with the rear seats folded down (500, 400 and a 300 crate).




Took the crash well

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus SE 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

My wife bought this car new. In the time she had it there was very little maintenance done on it. Had to replace a tail light that had melted to the plastic holder. Had to drill the old one out. Car ran smooth. A couple of weeks ago another driver pulled out in front of her and my wife and 9 month baby hit them head on at over 45 MPH. The good news is they both walked away. Minor injuries. Insurance did not give is much money for it but they car crumbled and not my family. Other problems with the car was the radio stopped working but could not be turned off. It just blinked, and the tailgate release button was not working had to use the keypad.




2003 focus ztw

by on
Vehicle: 2003 Ford Focus ZTW 4dr Wagon (2.0L 4cyl 4A)

I now have 135000 miles on this car. I have owned it from new. Only problem is that it wears out a lot of tires. Doesn't seem to help to align and rotate. last set of tires lasted 20,000 miles. Perhaps because they are the low profile 16 inch. Otherwise car uses no oil, averages 23mpg combined city and highway.



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Full 2003 Ford Focus Review

What's New for 2003

Minor changes are in store for the 2003 Ford Focus. Two new trim levels increase the breadth of prices for Ford's economy car; a base trim for the three door hatchback renders air conditioning optional and only comes with a manual transmission. For the five door hatchback, a tilt and telescoping steering wheel, cruise control, front reading lights and a center console are available when you step up to the comfort trim level from the base level. Heated front seats are a new option, as is a traction control and ABS package. New colors for the exterior brighten up the color palette, and the interior is freshened with two new fabric trims. Finally, a CD/MP3 player is now standard on the ZX3 and ZX5. A SVT version of the ZX5 is also scheduled to appear later in the year.

Introduction

"Smart design and spirited driving" were the guiding forces behind the development of the Focus. It debuted in 2000 with "New Edge" styling, a roomy interior and excellent road manners. These qualities, plus a wide variety of configurations, have made the Focus the best small car from a domestic manufacturer. It falls behind the Civic and Corolla in terms of refinement and reliability, but the 2003 Ford Focus is still worth considering for a fun and functional small car.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2003 Ford Focus is available in four body styles: a three-door ZX3 hatchback, a five-door ZX5 hatchback, a sedan and a wagon. The sedan can be ordered in one of three trim levels, starting with the base LX model and going up to the midlevel SE and highline ZTS trim. Wagons are available in SE or ZTW trim. The ZX3 can be had in base, premium or power premium trim, while the ZX5 allows for the choice between base, comfort and premium models. There's also the high-performance SVT Focus, which is based on the ZX3.

Powertrains and Performance

The base drivetrain for LX models is a 2.0-liter 110-horsepower four-cylinder engine mated to a five-speed manual transmission driving the front wheels. This same drivetrain is standard in SE sedans, but ZTS sedans, along with wagons and hatchbacks, get a more powerful 130-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine as standard equipment. A four-speed automatic is optional. Both engines provide adequate power, though the higher-output motor is the clear choice for enthusiasts. Still not enough? Then maybe you should consider the SVT Focus. Based on the ZX3, this hot hatch puts out 170 horsepower and is equipped with an exclusive six-speed manual transmission. The SVT Focus also comes with 17-inch wheels, oversize four-wheel disc brakes and a sport-tuned suspension to keep it glued to the road.

Safety

For safety, the Focus has ABS, traction control and stability control as optional equipment. NHTSA crash test scores for the ZX3 are good with the car earning four stars in frontal impacts and front side-impacts. The rear side-impact test, however, resulted in a very poor one-star rating for the ZX3. However, the ZX5 and wagon also scored four stars for rear side impacts. In frontal offset testing (conducted by the IIHS), the Focus has earned a "Good" score.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Focus is roomy for its class, offering generous accommodations for its front and rear passengers. Inside you'll find plenty of headroom. Some options usually not found in this segment include an in-dash six-disc CD changer, MP3 player and a stability control system. Some may find the asymmetrical dash layout odd, but the well-dampened controls and correct ergonomic placement should forgive any faults.

Driving Impressions

Regardless of trim, the 2003 Ford Focus offers a smooth ride quality and above-average handling ability. The four-wheel fully independent suspension allows for noticeable body roll while cornering, but the Focus stays planted and inspires confidence. The steering system is surprisingly quick, fluid and responsive, always providing plenty of feedback from the road surface. Our experience with our long-term ZX3 has proven to be more than satisfactory, and the SVT Focus, with its aftermarket-sounding exhaust, short-throw shifter and optional audiophile sound system has proven to be our favorite sport compact hatchback.

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Talk About The 2003 Focus

2003 Ford Focus Discussions See all Started By

hillsman
hillsman
12-21-2013
I am having issues with my side marker lights that stay on. I have removed the battery and have disconnected about everything possible on the car and they still are on. The only way that they turn of?...


sylviagm
sylviagm
04-05-2014
I don't understand anything on cars, but I do know that ever since I purchased a 2003 focus in 2008, I have invested or wasted at least $100. per mo. on repairs. For some weird reason, I've had to re...


amethyst_wm
amethyst_wm
09-13-2009
I am thinking of purchasing a used 2003 Focus Zx5 premium with 69K miles on it. The previous owner took care of the car meticulously. It is spotless--I mean, the car really looks like it is still new....



Read more about the 2003 Ford Focus

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