2000-'07 Ford Focus | Buyer's Guide

Staff
By Staff Writer
Dec 28, 2021 | Ford, Focus, Buyer's Guide, GRM+ | Posted in Buyer's Guides | From the Feb. 2010 issue | Never miss an article

Photograph Courtesy Ford

Story by Manuel Cintron

Ford’s reputation for building affordable automobiles dates back to the early 1900s. In a time when cars were reserved for the rich and well heeled, Ford’s assembly line production helped to cut the Model T’s costs from near $1000 to $360 in just…

This content is available for GRM+ members only.

You can read it for free in 32 days or subscribe to GRM+ to read right now.

Subscribe now

Join Free Join our community to easily find more Ford, Focus, Buyer's Guide and GRM+ articles.
Comments
View comments on the GRM forums
Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
12/28/21 10:20 a.m.

Don't let the parts house website fool you, the wagon suspension is EXACTLY the same as the sedan/hatch. Only the length of the shocks is different.  They stood them up for a flatter floor. There seem to be no performance dampers for the rear (front is identical on same year cars) although, if you were serious about a motorsports longroof, you could measure the compressed/extended height and go from there although no one on Focaljet or Focus Fanatics has figured that out.

Robbie (Forum Supporter)
Robbie (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/28/21 10:22 a.m.

I really loved driving my little silver SVT. Looked basically like the one in that photo. 

GTwannaB
GTwannaB GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/28/21 11:21 p.m.

In reply to Robbie (Forum Supporter) :

That is just like my current car but with the 8 spoke wheels. By today's standards maybe not too impressive but the feel and eagerness is pretty entertaining. Throttle by cable make a meaningful difference. 

OK if we are geeking out of Foci or at least I am, here is my bench racing build for the perfect MK1 Focus. 
Start with 2008/2009 2dr SES coupe, not the hatch but the less common one with only two actual doors. Add camber plates, street able coil overs and SVT sway bars. 
- Engine swap for ultimate build is Fiesta ST motor and tranny with a LSD. I suspect not simple and would be tough to make legal in my state of CA. 
-Swap option 2. Find a 2.5l from Fusion and swap in for torquey light weight combo. 
-Realistic build with just warm cams and head work on OEM 2.0 Duratec, but for the sake of dreaming, could you swap in a Mazda 6 speed from a MZR Mazda3/6 into a Duratec Focus?

I feel like this would be a Ford B13 SE-R with slightly more modern components.

cfvwtuner
cfvwtuner New Reader
12/29/21 10:12 a.m.

We still have our 00 ZX3 ordered way back in 99.  Koni Adjustables, Progress springs, Eibach sway bars, autopower roll bar, 5 point harness, Magnaflow exhaust, now with SVT Recaro seats and black housing headlights. 17" SVT 5 spokes for street, 225/50/15 Kuhmo R compounds for fun. We put 100K on it in less than 5 years.  It was autocrossed and tracked since new. It's been mothballed since she fot her 16 Focus SE Sport.

thedoc
thedoc GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/31/21 1:32 p.m.

We had an svt and I totally fell in love with the car.  She had been beat on, and another showed up with a power works supercharger.  THAT car was so great, fast, comfortable and we even hauled an inflatable pool with it!  Alas, it was t-boned by a prius during an ice storm.  I was able to buy it back from the insurance and sold it at a profit.  Seriously great car that we still miss.

thedoc
thedoc GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
12/31/21 1:38 p.m.

Seriously bad day, if I was hit on the other side, a much worse day 

Captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
Captdownshift (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/31/21 2:01 p.m.

I'll take mine in 2.3l duratec ZX3 guise with cosworth intake manifold, cams, AWR engine and transmission mount, a quaiffe and gravel coilovers.

alfadriver
alfadriver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/31/21 2:35 p.m.

This was the car that drove the final stake between me and Car & Driver.  Regardless of how good the objective numbers were in their tests, it always finished last just because.  The last one was when it was the best for fuel economy and second in performance, but was dead last in an econobox comparison.  Mostly because they just didn't like that the solid chassis wasn't new.

(it wasn't much beyond that when my long time R&T subscription ended, and just beyond that Autoeveryonceinawhile)

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
12/31/21 3:45 p.m.
alfadriver said:

This was the car that drove the final stake between me and Car & Driver.  Regardless of how good the objective numbers were in their tests, it always finished last just because.  The last one was when it was the best for fuel economy and second in performance, but was dead last in an econobox comparison.  Mostly because they just didn't like that the solid chassis wasn't new.

(it wasn't much beyond that when my long time R&T subscription ended, and just beyond that Autoeveryonceinawhile)

It did well early in it's run, then they started dinging it for being out of date. I think when the Mk 2 came out in Europe and we didn't get it, that started the negativity. One other thing C&D always complained about were the factory seats, and they weren't wrong about those.

My daughter's first car was an '07 5-door SES with the 2.3L and the auto. That car took a BEATING from her and kept on ticking. I did a lot of maintenance catchup when we got it and some body work when she hit a deer. You could certainly tell it was built to a price point and some corners were cut, but still, it was overall a solid, dependable, efficient car, and pretty fun and tossable. 

alfadriver
alfadriver GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/31/21 5:03 p.m.

In reply to Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) :

It may have been "out of date"- but at the same time, it was still better than the other cars being tested, objectively.  And it still got bashed and finished last.

At the same time, the Mustangs and Corvettes at the time were some of the fastest cars when running their one lap test- regularly beating cars well above their class, and they still got hammered.   And I won't mention the car brands that got extra credit for the brand.

I really don't understand what they had against their US co-workers, but it was enough that I just got tired of it.

Our Preferred Partners
gsgk8hpexSYbUvFCMfix3NTbk7VxxAiee5fbzqK17WEKEzC1UBqA7d0kQEsfzItj