Update - 2015 Focus ST Fun & reliable >!00 K miles
written on 03-12-2016
4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
101K Mile update - The car actually needed a battery at 82K miles - there was no ignition short. The new battery cost <$200 and there have been no other mechanical problems with this car. It is still tight with relatively few rattles, which is amazing. The Continental Extreme Contact tires lasted more than 55,000 miles and still had legal tread, I have put another set on. Three points not mentioned in my previous reviews of this car: (1) The tall gearing and turbo settings help save the engine and transmission. In normal cruising the turbo does not run unless you mash the accelerator. (2) The car is stable through bumpy turns which is incredible for this price range and further encourages the driver to toss it around at speed. (3) The traction control is excellent and will works in very slippery coditions provided that you pay attention to the feedback through the steering wheel, pedals and your senses. This is anything but a boring so-called SUV that does not interfere with texting and drinking your latte. BTW, GOODBYE FORD I CANNOT BELIEVE YOU WOULD STOP MAKING THIS LITTLE GEM. YOU OBVIOUSLY DO NOT CARE ABOUT THE FAMILY'S ORIGINAL MISSION! I would definitely recommend this car to any enthusiast on a budget. There are a few negatives that should be mentioned. The cabin is relatively small and (with the standard cloth seats) the passenger seat has no height control. A big and tall front seat passenger will be miserable even with the seat pushed all the way back and reclined. There also is very little rear seat legroom making entry and exit difficult for rear passengers. The hatch area is larger than it needs to be. If you need to haul large amounts of stuff in a hatchback most people would fold the rear seatbacks down. There was no reason to make the hatch area large at the expense of passenger room. The standard mirrors are not heated, neither are the standard cloth seats. Bundling these into a relatively expensive leather seat option package is consumer-unfriendly marketing on Ford's part. I wanted an inexpensive car for a long daily commute knowing that the book value would plummet as the miles piled on. The fuel tank is much too small and the driving range is only about 350 miles on a tank. If you drive approximately 650 miles a week just commuting to / from work as I do, refueling twice in a week is annoying. Last negative -- the HVAC is weak and the controls don't work well with regard to where the air comes out (defrost, face or feet). All the vents are upright and the placement is atrocious. At least two of the vents should have been placed horizontally which is better for air movement. I must stress that these negatives are minor relative to the pure pleasure of driving this car, and its surprisingly outstanding build quality and reliability. _______________________________________________________________________ I bought my 2015 Focus ST with no options other than sunroof and dark gray metallic paint. All-season tires are an essentially no-cost option. The car has been trouble-free through 30,000 mostly highway miles with low maintenance cost (relative to my previous VW GTI) and is much more engaging and fun-to-drive than my 2007 GTI was. This is a great daily driver with a winning combination of relatively low cost, decent fuel economy in normal driving, excellent 6-speed manual transmission, accurate steering, great handling, comfort and convenience, as well as strong acceleration, and incredible performance at high speeds. This car is solid, well planted and in complete control at fast-forward MPH. Even better, the car makes you "want" to gun it because it feels so good and seems to "like" it. I can't explain it -- you would have to test-drive it yourself (without the dealer's sales person riding shotgun). Downshift at highway speeds and you will be treated to surprising acceleration that most cars can't match. It feels great to pull away strongly from some other aggressive jerk driver, and them see them remain a small speck in your rearview mirror as they realize they can't possibly catch you with their car. The ride is comfortable except on poor quality roads (potholes). One recommendation -- do not try to rev the engine and drop the clutch from a standing start. The front wheels will spin and there may be axle hop, but you won't get good acceleration that way. Start off smoothly and let the turbo kick in after the car is already moving. The acceleration will be better. 0 to "a blur" will come up faster than you expect.
When I went looking for a new car I really wanted some sporty but practical. I really loved the Subaru WRX but with a bare bones WRX it was over $26k. Found out about the Focus ST, did some research, and I had to test drive it. I ended up with the basic 2015 Ford Focus ST (no Recaro seats, dual climate, etc). I paid far less than the WRX and got much more; standard it has fog lights, LED running day lights (give it an aggressive look) Bluetooth, back up camera, great looking exhaust, all four power windows have one touch up/down, stainless steel pedals, very nice low profile wheels, and on top of this better gas mileage. I can't account for how the Recaro seats feel, I've heard mixed reviews, but the cloth seats that come with it look great (gray and black with ST logo stitched into seat) and are super comfortable, even for longer rides. As a daily driver it's a great ride. You have the speed when you want it and fuel economy to match. Merging onto the highway is a thoroughly enjoyable experience now and picking up speed on the highway takes no time at all. Where it's most fun is a good backroad, the steering is really tight, precise, and has a great feel. Add onto this the practicality of a hatch and you've got one great car. I can't account for the longevity of the vehicle but I'm hoping for the best, so far I've had 0 issues with. Pros: Great bang for the buck given everything that comes with it standard. Great gas mileage for a sport car with a turbocharger (have gotten up to 33mpg on the highway). Hatchback fits a lot, after removing the privacy cover I've fit two 80lb dogs comfortably in the back without lowering the seats. The acceleration. Cons: Only a 60,000 mile warranty through Ford, which is kind of pitiful compared to their competitors. Ford says you can use 87 octane fuel but from what I've researched you'll lose a little bit of fuel economy and 9 horsepower, no change in peak torque though. The backup camera occasionally won't turn on when you put it in reverse, have to pop it into neutral and then shift it back into reverse. Comes with summer tires standard which is great until the winter. Does not do well in the snow at all, but I am cheap and could not justify buying brand new all seasons or winter tires when I've got a new set of tires already on it. It may perform well in the snow with better tires.
I purchased a Certified Pre-Owned ST3 roughly two months ago. With about 1200 miles into driving it, my overall impression of this car is that it is fantastic! Here are a few pros and cons in my own experience: Pros: -Great acceleration -Decent fuel economy for this type of car (I'm averaging 23-24 mpg with mostly city driving) -Great sound on Sony Premium Radio -Bright headlights that turn as you turn -Good amount of cargo capacity, especially with the rear seats folded down -Slightly stiff, but still very comfortable, sporty ride -Many reviews don't think the Recaros are comfortable, but I found myself used to them after one day of driving. They've definitely broken in. Cons: -Very limited on interior storage. There are only a small side pocket, a small center console, and a place for keys below the radio. -It can be difficult to get in and out of the Recaro seats. I often have to slide my chair back when getting out. -The navigation menus can be difficult and frustrating to navigate, even using the voice commands. -Rear headrests need to be removed to fold the seats down flat (or you have to slide your front seats way up) Overall, this vehicle has provided exactly what I was looking for: a daily commuter that is tons of fun and affordable. My initial want was a WRX, but I just couldn't pass up the value that this vehicle provides. I hope this review helps you in your car search!
I had a 2015 focus st for a year. There was nothing wrong with the car. I only traded it in because I've been wanting to own a mustang since I was a little kid so when I was given a great offer for a 2017 mustang gt new I couldn't reject it. I will say that I will own another focus st as soon as I have room to have it sit next to my mustang in the garage. The car is amazing. I'm not new to high performance cars. Having worked at a dealership and being able to drive cars home and owned fast cars for extended periods of time, I've driven ferraris, Lamborghinis, cámaros, mustangs, corvettes, Porsches, sti's, golf r, mclaren, Nissan GT-R, M bmws like M5, M3, AMG Mercedes, RS audis , SRT cars. To make short I've driven the best of the best. The focus st has amazing steering and steering feel. Supercar like. I haven't driven a car with better steering even a supercar as good but not better. Anyone with a budget who needs 4 doors, trunk space, MPG, hp, reliability should buy this car! The car has plenty of power! And add just a couple upgrades and this car will have 400 torque. More that some v8's. A hatch rocket that gets 32 mpg!! AWD wrx or golf r not always the best. AWD gets worse gas mpg. I drove this car through snowstorms in Buffalo and New England winters. Snow tires and you're all set. What makes this car better than all the cars I've mentioned is that it's a car you can enjoy! You can floor it and take turns fast. Straight line acceleration is very good too. Lots of torque!! Very easy to drive in town. Push a supercar to the limits on the street and you will go to jail. Even the 435 hp mustang gt that I currently own has too much power that I never use. The focus st is the most fun car I've ever driven. This car is super tossable and corners like it's on rails!! When I want to relax it drives like a regular car. I know some people don't buy it because it's a manual but it's European based build in Germany. In Europe they still sell more manuals than autos. Manuals are less costly in the long run! You can run a stock focus st at the racetrack all day without the car even flinching. The quality is very impressive. The best steering I've ever seen and felt. It's a recaro of course. Very easy to drive and very quiet stock. Very easy to park and find parking. I added a flowmaster Super 10 muffler and it really woke up the car. I recommend it only if you don't mind a louder exhaust note. No rattles after a year. Brakes barely wore. Tires plenty of thread. The eagle f1's are amazing. Nothing but oil changes, tire rotations. If you buy a focus st make sure you put a sticky tire during the summer so the car sticks like glue and you can enjoy it to its full potential. The car is very fuel efficient. I would take it out for joy rides for an hour on backroads now and then and it would barely use any gas. I do recommend an intercooler because the car heatsoaks after a couple pulls. The only other ISSUE WITH THIS CAR IS CARBON BUILD UP!! CARBON BUILD UP ON THE VALVES SINCE ITS DIRECT INJECTED. MY VALVES WERE DIRTY AFTER 20,000 MILES. If ignored car will shutter at cold start up and can cause an engine light due to misfire like it happened to me once. Once cleaned it runs like new. Plan to have the valves clean every 20,000 miles or you can use valve cleaner from an auto parts store. Common issue with the direct injected ecoboost. Ford has no approved procedure so the dealership will most likely not touch the car and will want to replace the whole cylinder head which is completely unnecessary. Has to be take to an independent shop that knows how to do the process. Just google intake valve cleaning in your area. Most commonly you will run into a shop that does it regularly on some audis and bmw's. Don't shy way from the car because of this. It happens to any direct injected engine like some audis bmw's, Hyundai, Volkswagen, ford, chevy. Car has nice stereo, Bluetooth, keyless entry, push start, HILL START!! WILL HELP IF YOURE WORRIED ABOUT A MANUAL ON HILLS. Computer will hold rear brakes while you release the clutch so the car doesn't move backwards. Awesome feature!!! Very fun car to drive. Soft clutch. Manual so much fun. Drove it cross country twice!! No problems. Just watch your speed on the highway because this car was build for high speeds on the autobahn since it's based for Europe and you find yourself cruising at 85-100 mph without noticing. The suspension might be a little rough for some people but it's what makes that car handle like a race car! I don't doubt that you can easily put 300,000 miles on this car plus it's a ford at the end of the day. You can find parts everywhere and cheap to maintain. Buy this car. You won't regret it.
This is the third Focus we've had in my household and let me tell you this car is fast, fun and a joy to own. It is so unlike my previous Foci that I have taken the Focus badge off of the rear hatch, leaving only the distinctive ST badges front and rear. The car is in its element sticking in winding corners and wide open throttle accelleration. It is so much fun you may forget the practicality of the 4 door hatchback with room for 4 adults and fold down rear seating for more cargo. A final selling point for me is the offer of free track day at Miller Motorsport park in Tooele, UT where you are allowed to take one of their ST Octane Academy Focus ST and Fiesta STs out on two track. Since writing the above, I attended the ST Octane Academy. What a great time Ford has really nailed it!?