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2004 Ford Focus ZX3 Premium 2dr Hatchback (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
A money pit. If I had to rely on this car for above average use I would have been in trouble many times. For a small car the mileage is below avg-my last trip I couldn't even get 30 mpg hwy/22-23city. The transmission fluid had to be changed at 40k - it's synthetic and cost over $200. The alternator went out at 48k-the engine must be jacked-up to release the alternator so it near impossible for an owner to do.You are looking at $400-700 cost due to labor and parts. The ignition lock seized at 45k-must be towed to the dealer to be fixed due to the anti-theft chip. Around $500. Now at 56k the thermostat housing and valve cover gasket are leaking-Parts and labor will cost you around $500.
Hatchback is good for storage; the ride quality is good for a small car for short commutes and long trips. Exterior design is sharp and unique.
Don't get one, the new focus is even smaller inside than my '04, and the reliability is not any more certain. Gas mileage has barely improved, and only for hwy driving.
2004 Ford Focus SVT 4dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
The review by 'jonny' is spot on; I encountered the exact same problems on my SVT. Plus pieces of body trim falling off at random intervals, leaving me with no front splitter and a focus looking like a dump-truck in the front. So I traded it in on a Mazda 3 because ill-witted Ford did not bring the proper Mk. 2 Focus stateside.
Handling, and steering.
What happened to "Quality is job 1"?
2004 Ford Focus ZX5 Premium 4dr Hatchback (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
Bought slightly used in '04. Opted for 2.3L eng. Great ride/handling balance. Fun to drive. V. good steering. Reliable: just brakes & some front suspension work after 5 years. Brakes could be better, but adequate. Excellent value, reliable, 27 MPG avg in interstate hwy / city driving mix. Purely on highway, at least 32 MPG at interstate speeds. Unique styling. Hard to find a non-conservatively styled hatchback. I'm discerning, yet recommend this car since I've got 101K on engine & car still works very well. Of course I maintain it well too, that helps. Good luck.
Unique interior & exterior styling, yet practical hatch. Ride / handling balance.
Brakes are adequate, but could be stronger. 4 wheel discs limited to SVT model--should've been option for Premium model too.
2004 Ford Focus ZTS 4dr Sedan (2.3L 4cyl 5M)
I have been totally satisfied with my 2004 Ford Focus ZTS. It is a well made, reliable, economical and fun to drive vehicle. I currently have about 85,000 miles on my car. I still have orginal brakes,clutch etc. Car has been almost problem free. Only problem has been the accelerator linkage which had to be replaced twice under warranty. That's about it. My mileages is 27/34 with an average of 30 mpg. My only wish that it was a little quieter inside the cabin when driving high speed. Not really a problem though-only a wish. Seats are very comfortable-I have a bad back too! I traded in my 2000 ZTS for this Honey. My wife drives a 2001 Focus as well.
comfortable reliable fun to drive
reduce cabin noise.
2004 Ford Focus SVT 2dr Hatchback (2.0L 4cyl 6M)
I bought this SVT new in Nov. 2004. I work for Ford and am a Master Tech. Being familiar with the Focus, i had to snag one before they were gone. This car has amazed me from day one. Through the years, it has just been better and better. With a few modifications here and there, this car is extremely hard to beat at 4 times the money. To date, this SVT can pull 1.15g in cornering and out brakes pretty much anything short of pure race cars. I have less then $30k in it and have out performed cars costing over $100k on short courses.
Handling hands down. Audiophile system is amazing for stock. I was lucky enough to get one that doesn't have traction control.
Ford SVT should have made the Jackson Racing supercharger stock.