"Well, I'm on my third Focus now. First met a grim demise in a gravel-strewn corner, but I walked away. Second was a champ for 35k (bought it at 80k) before I started looking for something "more".
Well, I'm a pretty broke college student. I wanted fun, comfort, style, and more speed, typical of my demographic. But the Zetec 4cyl just wasn't quite enough. I shopped around, tried at '03 MkIV GTI, but it wasn't efficient enough, and just didn't have the "it" factor. I tried the 04 Civic SI, and was immediately turned off by the console mounted shifter.
Then I saw a 2004 SVT Focus with the Euro Package sitting on a lot. One test drive and a few hours of paperwork, it was mine. Its fast (only marginally slower that the newest Civic SI), handles amazingly (almost completely neutral with just a bit of understeer that comes on predictably at the limit), and has some of the most comfortable seats I've ever been in (the Euro package comes with leather Recaros).
The reliability has been great, I've owned this particular one for about 10k miles and haven't had anything break on me yet (bought it at 65k), and my drive home from work is a 7 mile canyon that I take at about 8/10ths... I don't baby it, and it only seems to run stronger the harder I go.
If you want a car with all the fixings without the hefty price tag, get one of these, its got heated seats, heated mirrors, HID headlamps, a moon roof, a great sound system, traction control, 4-wheel disc brakes, and a full leather interior, not to mention all the good stuff under the hood.
Dont get me wrong, its no BMW, the fit and finish on the dash and center console is average, and the choice of materials could be better. Also, the wind noise suppression could be better.
If you buy one expecting an econobox on steroids, you'll be pleasantly surprised to find that its more than that , as it performs, looks, and feels better than just about anything in its class."
"this is the third Ford Focus owned. All three have been extremely depending and offer comfort, great handling, and good gas mileage around town. I do a great deal of commuting and in-town travel and this car is very well-suited. If reliability and value are what you're after...this is the one."
"Best car ever. I have had it for over 9 yrs. Only serious problem I had was the alternator, had to replace it recently and my starter. Other then that just the typical battery and tire replacement, when needed. A very reliable car. Great gas mileage!"
Pros: "Great handling, gas mileage and motor longevity."
Cons: "Manual windows (LX, duh), not much pickup."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I bought this car 6 months ago with 175,000 for $1500. I feel like I got the best deal! I drive this car 100 miles a day and I plan to do so until this little car can't go anymore. I find myself pricing newer Foci all the time! When this car doesn't run anymore I am DEFINITELY getting a newer one! I love this car even if it doesn't have all the creature comforts of a 2010+ model year. I get great gas mileage (only $35 to fill up!) I get ~335 miles per tank. I wish they made this car in a v6, because the only thing I don't like is the pick up power. There isn't much. :)"