Extremely well built car. Bought new in Feb '09. Still looks and drives showrooom new without a squeak or rattle. ONLY maintenance to date: Oil & filter changes, tire rotations every 6K miles; replaced air filter.
I ran two bottles of Gumout fuel system cleaner through the tank at 40K. At 47K miles, replaced OEM Kumho 215 45 17 tires with Continental Extreme DWS. Absolutely nothing else. Lifetime average actual fuel consumption in mixed driving is very good 30.6 MPG. Exterior look is distinctive.
It is comfortable, relatively quiet and fun to drive with 5-speed manual. Very little wind noise, average road noise. Ideal commuter. Custom Curt hitch works great on this car for hauling bikes.
This is my 3rd focus and they have all been great cars. on this one I have done a few mods to it (short shifter, lowered 1.5", exhaust, intake) all of which have helped the overall performance and experience of the car. even stock the car handled very well for it's class and has great gas mileage (i maintain a 32mpg average). vast improvements over the previous models and far as comfort, sound level, performance, economy. driver comfort is great. I have done several long drives in this car with no problems. not as comfy for passengers though (not as adjustable seats). I have a kid and there is enough room for a stroller and goodies and decent back seat room for him. overall a great car.
Why buy a Focus? Check out these numbers: MSRP $19.8K. Price paid $16.5K. Total maintenance cost after 22.5K miles just $140 (3 oil changes/tire rotation, sync upgrade, removed a nail from one tire). Respectable lifetime actual mileage 30.6 MPG mixed driving (computer says 31.7 MPG). Excel. fit & finish, still looks showroom new. Comfortable seats. Very good handling with 17 in Kumo tires on dry roads, but they aren't good in rain/snow. Feels substantial, not tinny. Outstanding sound insulation for wind and engine noise, but average road noise. Looks are distinctive, but appears a little tall for the width of its track. A great commuter that I really enjoy driving. Definitely consider it.
The automotive press really don't get the appeal of the Focus SES Coupe. They short change it on style and rate its performance lackluster. The truth is, this car is the complete package. Combine its blend of unique styling, confident handling, quiet/comfortable ride, stellar SYNC system with incredible fuel economy and give-away price incentives and you've discovered what makes the Focus special. Okay. It's not a performance car, but it doesn't feel like an economy car either. It's not spirited, but certainly agile. Import shoppers looking to balance fun, comfort and value really should take an SES 5-speed out for a test drive before shelling out cash for a Civic/Mazda 3/Corolla
Bought used. The design inside and out looks good with the SES package (although inexpensive for a new car, doesn't look like a cheap car). Rims look awesome, but they will get a little scratched up being flush the side of the tire. Driving and handling are great, driving 120KM on the highway feels perfectly safe. Driven in winter conditions Dec-Jan this year, no different than any other car. Has some traction control that kicks on when slipping once...car is smarter than me. Glad I bought this over the Mazda3 (I notice more and more with the passenger door dents from attempted break ins).