2009 Ford Focus Consumer Review: Manual transmission

2009 Ford Focus - Consumer Review

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5 of 6 people found this review helpful
Manual transmission
By kristin sutkaitis on


2009 Ford Focus SE 4dr Sedan (2.0L 4cyl 5M)


My car has 23,000 miles on it. I recently took it to the dealership because I had a hard time putting into reverse and into first, when it is cold outside. they said the problem wasn't happening when they had my car. don't get me wrong I love the car, but i just want to know what wrong with it. it's still under warranty. am I the only one who is having this problem?
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By efitz7029
on 12/16/10 09:29 AM (PST)

Yes I to have this problem occasionally.

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By jnorr993
on 01/19/12 14:23 PM (PST)

My car had 31,000 miles on it, and I experienced the same problem. I literally could NOT shift into reverse when it was cold, and had a really hard time shifting into first. Once it warmed up it was fine, but I do not accept this as normal, so I took it to the dealer. After 14 days in the shop, and the local maintenance tech arguing with Ford Corporate who was telling them this is not an abnormality... they fixed it. They took the transmission completely apart, and replaced (2) synchros and the slave cylinder/bearing. Granted, I don't know a lot about cars, but they said the synchros were chipped, and I have been told the only way this happens is if you drive the car REAL hard, and I don't at ALL. Plus the low mileage makes this highly unlikely unless it was manufacturer defect. The shop was baffled as to what would have caused this and reassured me that it was unlikely I would experience this again at 60,000, but I can't say that I am 100% comfortable with that answer. Because, at 60,000 miles, I will no longer be under warranty, and a transmission repair like that could get very costly... That being said, it works BEAUTIFULLY now. Even in the -2 degree weather we had today!!

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By awelling
on 01/05/11 01:32 AM (PST)

I experience this problem with my manual when it is cold. The only suggestion I have is to let your car warm up. The problem goes away then.

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By imkilowatt
on 11/04/15 08:49 AM (PST)

Wow. These comments are right on target regarding my wife's 2009 Ford Focus. In the Fall of 2013, my wife started experiencing the exact problems listed in the comments here. We took the car to the local Ford dealer. The item changed at that time was to adjust the linkage. That did correct the problem for the next couple of winters. But, as of fall 2015, the exact problem is back. My wife must let the car warm up for 15 minutes before she can get the car into reverse. It should be noted that she can shift with no problem when the car is off. We took the car to the dealer for diagnosis. This time, they said that they found a small leak in the hydraulic line, but they cannot explain why that would cause a problem only when the car is cold. Of course, they will not look further until we spend almost $500 to make that repair. We have spoken with multiple mechanics and not one of them can explain why the problem only occurs in cold weather. So, we will get the small leak replaced and most likely continue to deal with the problem. We have been told that the next step is to drop the transmission. If the mechanics cannot find a problem, our cost will be $1500 - $2000 or more. We are not sure that we want to take that risk. We will share the comments about the synchros with the dealer. Actually, it has been mentioned by more than one mechanic that the problem seems to be related to synchronization. But, unfortunately, it is our gamble to find out. [contact info removed]

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