10-15-2003, 10:13 PM
"Many returns of the day," a donkey once said to me.
Whenever I start considering a major investment or purchase, I always like to scout around and see what kind of online community the product has spawned. In a way, the vibrance and tenacity of it's online community is a good measure of it's quality.
Anyway, hello from Hawaii, and do feel free to refer to me as the proverbial n00b[ie]. :)
I'm a random college student who just transfered to Hawaii thinking that Oahu was small enough to be able to get around on the bus and walking to the beach was all I'd ever want to do. Reality check: the bus system sucks, the beach rules, but all the good ones are 15-20 miles from campus.
In order to save my sanity, my time, and throw in a lot of distractions I could do without, I am in the market for a car.
At this point I'd ask you "Well jeepers, do ya'll (please note to the use of the word 'ya'll') like and love your Ford Foci?" Which immediately following afterwards the moderators would (rightfully) ban my hide and segregate me from you fine folks. :)
Yeah, I'm looking at the Focus. Price range is beteen 10-15k new. I figure I'll go new since my family has been plagued with problems when we've purchased used. Carsdirect.com indicates they could get me a pretty nice one with a 3k rebate putting it around 10-13k depending on my options.
This will be my first car. My only car.
I do have a few questions I'd like to submit to you guys who have more experience and knowledge in this area. :)
#1 -- Did you purchase your Focus on the internet or at a dealer? Carsidrect.com works with the dealers and arranges the price on their own, if you request it, and being one who hates the "dealership experience" likes this avenue. OTOH, I've heard mixed things about the reliability about the cost saving factor.
#2 -- How much of a lifespan does the Focus have? The first model was a 2000, correct? Can such a question then be answered? Also, a lot of cars here are rusted because of the proximity to the ocean. How resiliant do you think the Focus would be to the elements? (and no, don't have a garage)
#3 -- I'm tall. 6"2. I need space. Room. Freedom. Never been in one (of course I plan to be when/if I test drive one), but wanted to gauge the comfort level of anyone who is vertically inclined. ;)
#4 -- I'm mainly looking at the 2door hatchback (ZX3), believing it to me the most bang for my buck as far as cargo space and seating capabilities. No I don't like wagons, I drove an Escort Wagon for 4 years thank you very much. :)
#5 -- Do you "love" your car? No, no, not "like" in the analytical sense but rather the superficial sense based only on visual looks. (Inside and out) Pictures from different angles reveal the hatchback to be rather frumpy looking in some poses and very striking in others. The racer on the frontpage of this web site makes me drool, I'm not ashamed to admit.
#6 -- How good is Ford's warranty in your experience? If there's legit problems, do they take care of it or am I better off going to Saturn given the wonderful and prophetic things I've read about them. This kinda money isn't something to screw around with.
#7 -- Do you have a moonroof on yours? Like it? Worth considering? I've always wanted one but never really knew how practical or worthwhile they are in actuality.
Anyway, those are my (lucky 7) question. I appreciate anyone who has the time to answer a few these in order to help me on my way.
My friends keep badgering me to get a Honda Civic. Except in Hawaii everyone and their freaking grandmother owns one. They maintain it's the best bang for the buck but after being in one it just feels...wrong somehow. I have no doubt it's a good value but if it can be helped I'd rather explore these other options first. :)
Thanks for listening to my long-winded tirade.
10-15-2003, 10:15 PM
Aloha Chris and welcome aboard.
10-15-2003, 10:18 PM
Welcome. I am 6'2" also and fit fine no problems. I bought my First Focus at a dealer and am about to inherit the second from my father. I love the car. It is Ford yet has a European Appeal to it. I have seen a couple of Focuss that make the trek into Wash DC everyday on those brutal roads and they had almost 100K on one and the other had 120K. Saturn are good but if you want to mod it, I would stay away from them. I had one, a 96, few mods and the motor went tits up. Don't rust though.
Welcome aboard and I hope you go with a Focus.
10-15-2003, 10:24 PM
I Live in Florida......sorta like Hawaii. Everyone has a civic, an eclipse, or a Tiburon (biggest piece of crap). I decided to be different, and it has paid off. From Experience, Foci drive much better than civics or elcipses, and handle the best. Foci may not have quite the straight line performance of a car with V-tec or a V-6, but I have only lost to a turboed civic and quite a few Mustang Gts and Cobras. As far as headroom, my brother, who is 6'2", has no trouble, and has 2 or 3 inches to spare. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask. We have a plethera of different opinions and sources for tips, so ask away.
the focus is a huge car inside...
is economy becouse its cheap...
dont be fool by that....
about the waranty...
i think you can buy like 10 years waranty from ford...so you dont have to worry...
i love the car...(i think almost every owner love this car)
you can alway modify it to make it look more like the euro version....
there are lots of after market for it...so the performance part could be cover relatively easily...
try to get the 2.3 engine and get a manual...
10-15-2003, 10:35 PM
I'm 6'3'' and I fit just fine. I also own a 1991 civic hatch that is slower than your grandma's grandma but I seem to fit in that one pretty well too. I say go with the focus b/c to me it is a more comfortable ride, accelerates faster, looks so much better and different than a civic, handles better, and is a sleeper w/ tons of aftermarket support.
10-15-2003, 10:38 PM
1-yah I did considering I know the owner, but if u go in with a pissy I'm the boss atitude they sometimes help u out depending on what kinda salesman u get...I got thrown out for pissin a guy off cause I was right, he tried sellin it to me for 200 more than the paper said and then he said wrong price...my ass!!! anyways
2-thats a good q....if u aint gonna beat on it a hell of a long time...my friend bobby hofman had a 00 (gave to sister) se and beat the shit out of it everyu day...litterally never drove less than 40 mph and gas on it every time he drove, trans is still good, but is gettin on its last leg cause it is ...yah...has 55,000 miles on it...might be under warranty but he doesn't wanna take it in, not sure if his sister will
3-my friend tom newman is like frickin 6-4...when he puts the seat back he says hes good...
4-ummm yah only way to go man!! U can fit 2 12 in subs in there and still have room for cargo! well depending on where u put em...
5-I'm still gettin into the love stage...I loved my old car (200 coug) but it died a sad sad sad sad :( early death and I'm still gettin over that (1st car and badass) but once thats done I will love 4ever! I hope they come out with another version thats faster so when I sell this one in like 5 yrs I can get another cool one!
6-that I'm not sure...mercury's sucked...if they didn't find somethin wrong with u'r car when u brought it in for warranty repair (ex. I thought somethin was wrong and actually not) they charged u!!! stupid as shit...so far I brought my car in for oil change and stuff...good experience although the guys at the dealership are [:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)][:)]s...I took it in cause it made a weird noise...they checked it it was fine...took it in cause one of the hoses wasn't on right and leakin they fixed it no prob...NOW I have to take it in cause I think my fuel pump is crappin out on me (on a 6000 mi car) cause I was gettin 175 miles to a 1/2 tank on all city driving and mid grade gas, now I put in the low grade cause I was told its better for the car and will INCREASE gas mileage and I'm gettin like 120 to 130 a 1/2 tank...I'll prob take it in next week after anothr couple fillups although I already talked to the guy...he sounded fine with it! Prob cause hes hagglin me for a good review cause they are asses over there!
7-no I don't have one but yes I'd like one...my friend derek (cowsgomoo) has one and it won't close right now...I'd say go for it if u want one cause dealer will always fix if broken its only 400 bucks or so for more happiness!! DO IT!!! Warranty work is awesome!
PS: BUY A FOCUS!!! IF U DON'T I WILL ....wait I won't do anything! :) [:)~] [:p] just get one or another FORD related product and u will be good but I like (will get to love in a lil bit) my focus!!!![thumb] [thumb] [thumb] [thumb] [thumb] 5 Stars! Blue Oval certified! ;) ok thats over the edge :)
10-15-2003, 10:41 PM
I got a power moonroof, I wasn't really planning on getting one, just the one I liked at the dealer had one, so oh well... and it is really nice. I especially like the vent mode on it. It is really nice when it is warm out to have the windows rolled down and the moonroof open.
As far as the warrenty, if you have a pretty good dealer then you are probably okay. Sometimes there are dealers that like the really give you the shaft (or at least it seems that way), not all just a few that I've heard of. I've had mine in for minor warrenty stuff like the high beams weren't aligned properly and they fixed them quickly. I haven't had any problems yet with my dealer.
BTW, if you are refering in #5 to the car on the top right hand of the page, that is a focus RS. They aren't available in the US however I know people and I even saw one at a g2g I went to, that have converted to ZX3s to look like one. You can buy the parts that are the same that go on the RS.
Also check out the showroom forum here, you can see tons of pictures of everyone's cars.
10-15-2003, 11:17 PM
I LOVE my car, and I LOVE my sunroof. Hell, over here in nw indiana, in the past week it's ranged from 70-40 degrees... even when it gets ass cold, my front windows are down and the sunroof is cracked, and the heat is turned to max, and i cruise it. I'll never drive a car without a sunroof or convertible ever (I may make an exception for a Z06). As for style, I like the look of the zx5 the best... it doesn't look odd and long like the zx3, it doesn't look boxy like a wagon, it doesn't have this odd rear shade that the sedans have, in my opinion. The warranty is only 36k on 02's, and is like 70 months/7 years on the 03's, so it's good, as far as how they warrant it is more up to your dealer, mine is great. The focus is still a young car so it's hard to find one's with TONS of miles on them, but most people have can vouch that their fords last a pretty long time with good maintence. I purchased from a dealer, i regret it. If I could go back, i would had purchased a brand new SVT focus off the internet for the same price i paid my dealer, figures.http://www.focusfanatics.com/gallery/data/513/324best-med.jpg?1804
10-16-2003, 12:46 AM
I have a moonroof and it's so awesome. Just like CowsGoMoo said, I like to open all the windows and the moonroof and crack that heat up. It's got lots of room inside. Just because it's kinda small doesn't mean that it's dinky inside. Heck, I even rode in the back seat for the first time this summer and there is a lot of room back there.
I promise you once you get your Focus, you will never wanna quit driving it. It's so fun and it handles great.
10-16-2003, 03:05 AM
hello there chrisw , i my self been looking into buying a focus. thats the reason why i came here to , from the way the focus seems they seem awsome ,i cant wait to get mine i just hope every thing gose good with the dealer i am going to, hes looking at thing right now. but its a friends friend so it might go good(i hope). and man i know what u are talking about when it comes to the honda thing, i live in so cali and there every where . i am trying to get a sedan and i cant wait i am going nuts to find out , and if this one gose bad i am going to find another one to get. nice car cows looks tight
10-16-2003, 03:41 AM
Do we wanna know why you was in the backseat? [rofl]
Welcome aboard Chris, I love my Focus, there are alot of aftermarket parts for it, makes an awesome sleeper on the Warranty they are having a special on sill I do believe, of a 10 year 100,000 mile on the power train atleast that's what I got on mine, and Also the standard warranty on all that other stuff as well 5/60,000 I believe it is, correct me if I am wrong. Hope you decided to purchase a Focus
Be unique get something 5 million other people don't have :)
10-16-2003, 12:17 PM
[welcome] Chris! I am going to have to put in another vote for the moonroof, it's great! I had a convertible before and couldn't give up the fresh air for a total hard top... ended up looking on the internet at over 30 nearby dealers to find one with ABS and moonroof. Haha, little obsessed, but I haven't regreted it for a second!
As far as warranty goes, mine had a flukey alternator (first 220 miles!) and my dealer got it all taken care of, totally free... even offered a loaner since they needed to order the part over the weekend. But that all depends on the dealer too... I'd ask around to people who've bought Fords in your area, and see how the dealer's rep is, some are excellent and some suck. See if they're 'Blue Oval Certified', that's usually a good indicator of how things are run at the place.
Mine is also a ZX3 (2.3L engine rocks) and I do love it already... only had it since beginning of August but it's marvelous!! And very easy to modify so I hear, though I'm strapped for cash currently, but will be doing light modding soon! I don't know about Hawaii's weather but here in the Northeast they pelt the cars with all kinds of salt and sand from like November-April, and I've seen some 2000 Foci still looking quite nice! If you wash it regularly and give it a good overall detail at least once a year it should be cool. Like I plan on bringing mine in for an undercarriage wash, etc (The Works) each spring to keep it fresh and clean. Good luck on your decision, and I'd definitely go for the Focus[:D] over the Civic[xx(] ... much more stylish![8D]
10-16-2003, 12:50 PM
I can vouch for a couple of things:
My car is holding up fine. Just turned 62,000 miles yesterday. That makes approx 33,000 since I got it September of 2002. Still runs great. Just keep the maintenance (sp) and she'll do just fine.
As for the height issue, I'm 6'4" and have plenty of headroom. The driver's seat can be raised and lowered. I have mine all the way down and have about 1.5 to 2" of headroom. If you get a manual tranny, the center console may be an issue for you. Because of my height, it is not for me.
In other cars with sunroofs, I've had headroom problems b/c of my height. This may not be an issue for you, but something to consider.
10-16-2003, 01:12 PM
I am 6'-2" and have a moon roof--no problems with head room, even when my hair is spiked. I think the three door is the sportiest and coolest looking and I haul a lot of stuff in mine with the seats folded. I purchased an extended warranty, 5 years bumper to bumper no deductible, and I have not had to pay a cent on repairs except for oil changes--including changing fog light bulbs, but my car is still pretty new. You should be able to get a pretty good deal on one right now, but if you can wait a couple of months you may get a better deal on 2003 leftovers--I bought my 2002 SVT Focus in January and paid only $15K including the extended warranty. I love my car, love it from every angle, and I love it the longer I own it.
Go for it!!!!
Oh yeah, and GO RED SOX!!!!!!
10-16-2003, 06:55 PM
One of my closest friends just recently returned from Hawaii-- what a beautiful state!
I've had my ZX3 for just shy of 2 months and I LOVE it. It's almost disturbing.
Let's see... I have to agree w/ a lot of other folks here. You'd be surprised how roomy this l'il car is! I'm 5'4" so I don't take up much space but to be honest, no one has ever complained about the space in the car. In fact, everyone has been surprised about how roomy the car is!
I have a sunroof. That wasn't something that I thought about but I'm glad that I ended up with one! You'd love it in HI-- lots of sun and fresh air!
Hmmm... what else? I'm not much of a performance person. If my car starts, then I am happy. I have been getting great mileage. The car handles very nicely. It looks nice, too.
I paid about $15,000... Well, it will be more than that seeing as how I financed it but oh, well.
My advice would be to try to find a car rental place that offers the Focus. Take it out for a couple of days and see if it fits your lifestyle.
10-16-2003, 10:27 PM
Yeah but most rental places will probably have stripped down LXs with the SPI engine.
I'm only 5'5" so obviously it is plenty roomy for me. But one of my friends is 6'1" and he has no problem riding or driving my car.
And yeah, the gas milage is awsome. I've gotten as high has 36 on a trip that I took.