The ztec is a great little engine. my car has 162000 miles (260000km). originally paid 16280 ttl included. i've been through two sets of all weather tires and two sets of winter tires (pass driving is much easier with snow tires). I've replace the brakes twice, one set of struts, timing belt replaced (yes, it is a necessary maintenance item at about 100K. two sets of spark plugs, an EGR valve and an O2 sensor and tie rod ends thanks to the crappy seattle roads. Oil changes every 5000 miles and transmission oil changed every 30K miles. I just replace the batter for the second time in 15 years. It's been a super inexpensive car to own. and I rely on it for 350 mile trips on a regular basis.
If you find a well maintained 2000-2004 SW with a ztec engine, it should be a fine car to own and drive.
My focus has been going strong for 184k miles, which probably isn't the norm. It idles rough from an unbalanced engine. The power locks and a/c don't work. The headlights are easily scratched and get really dim. The hatch doesn't hold open in the cold. I've had to replace the ignition ($300) struts ($400) ball joints ($500) and vacuum hose ($80) in the 60k miles I have owned it.
When looking for a small wagon I had certain criteria. I needed something that would fit my family of people and pets. The Focus is economical, stylish, and fun to drive. It truly is the vehicle for me and others who are looking for a small wagon...whose numbers are dwindling.
I really want to love this car. It has not left me stranded yet. But since I purchased it with 90K 2 years ago, I have put in nearly $4000 in repairs. None to my negligence. So buyer beware. The first year of the Focus is the most problematic. I will say that it has plenty of power and features for a small car. The wagon has tons of space as well.
Bought the car because we needed a small wagon for commuting. At the time of purchase very little existed in the market for choice. Ford had brought the Focus design from Europe to the states and we liked its crisp lines and the fact that it was a wagon. We found my 6'4" frame fit comfortably in the cabin and the responsive road handling fun to drive. We had the recalls from Ford fixed and thru the years of ownership I have had only a few unexpected repairs. Overall I found preventive maintenance is the key to the 150000 miles of service this car has provided. I expect to own the car another 150000 miles before I aquire a new replacement. We are pleased with its performance and reliability.