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Old 05-12-2015, 03:24 AM   #1
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Question Why do Europeans like the Focus so much??

aside from the obvious answer (because it's fscking rad), why does it seem that the focus has been, since day one, one of the most loved and appreciated compact cars in most of Europe and especially the UK, while being more or less tolerated in the US? Did the North American mk2 tarnish its reputation THAT much? Even so it seemed like even the mk1 was getting so much more play in the rest of the world than it ever got stateside... European Car of the year 1999....Auto express voted it The best car of the past 25 years....Clarkson loved it on top gear.....car throttle called it "the high water mark of fords recent history"....Now it's the best selling car in the world...is it just me or did the USA just never show the focus this kind of love??


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Old 05-12-2015, 06:28 AM   #2
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For one thing in Europe gasoline ranges between twice and 3x as much as it is in the states so you're left with allot of people driving small econo boxes. The focus is praised due to it's high fuel economy (especially in Europe where it has more engine option including a 1.6 and a diesel) while remaining a relatively cheap car that has some room isn't to small and is well made. So the focus is a great middle ground between an econo box and a nice car. Like the SUVs everyone drives in the states.

let's see petrol in london is currently 1.07 euro per liter.

1.07 euro is 1.20USD
3.78 litres is one gallon

so 3.78 * 1.20 = 4.53 per gallon. Were I'm from gas is about $2.40 per gallon right now.
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Old 05-12-2015, 06:33 AM   #3
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That^^^^^^^ Have you looked at how long the Escort has been around? Lot of history there too.
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:29 AM   #4
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Focus has just been an all around good value. Decent interior space for the size, fun to drive, lots of engine choices, pretty reliable and not expensive to keep running. The rest of the world got a properly refreshed mk2 where as we just received a mid life refresh with our mk1.5 and then only received the sedan version for what we call mk2. Europe has always been hatch centric, due its versatility.
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Old 05-12-2015, 10:52 AM   #5
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Yup, the MkII for the U.S. was a more boring "economy" sedan chosen for a time of relatively low gas prices when sales were expected to be low. Sporty variants, hatches & wagons were dropped.

Sales were actually bolstered near the end of that model with higher trim versions & healthy discounts. Few wanted the "plain" appearance for their cars, both interior & exterior.

Focus is NOT a "small car" in Europe, putting it in a different class entirely.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:38 PM   #6
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Well this American likes the Focus very much too. Even before the Focus when I bought my first home in 1983 I needed a commuter car since I put so many miles back and forth to work. I had 3 Ford Escort GT's 1987, 1991 and 1994. Put on about 400K miles between those 3 and they were reliable great cars. Then when the Focus came out I was all over it. I bought a 2000 SE and then my current driver 2002 ZX5. I had a 2004 SVT 5 door and also a 2013 ST for a short time. My 2011 SES is used by my wife as her daily driver. For all my Focus vehicles I put over 450K miles in all those years. I have almost 225K miles on my 02 alone. All my Focus cars have been great reliable rides. For every day drivers I will keep buying the Ford Focus.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:21 PM   #7
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I guess I never understood why the Civic was always the darling of American small car lovers, while the Focus seemed to be the darling of the UK. In fact, the Honda (and for that matter the other Japanese manufacturers) are rarely mentioned in the European small car conversation (always VW, Ford, Peugeot, Citroen, Renault, SEAT, Fiat). Do the Japanese companies just not push themselves in Europe? Or are the Europeans just spoiled for choice in the small car segment and choose to support European brands?
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Old 05-12-2015, 05:04 PM   #8
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Gotta think of the history here, with the Civic coming out in '72 (late in the year for a hatchback version).

By '73, it was the cool new car unlike anything else ever seen without any serious competition in this market. The only other FWD economy car avail. was the FIAT, and they never sold in big numbers here. VW came out with the Rabbit and while that did well it didn't compete on luxury touches std. on the Civics that weren't avail. at ANY price elsewhere (VW was in another price class as well).

Ford was selling the Pinto, Chevy the Vega, Chrysler had RWD Colt (Mitsubishi) Toyota had RWD Corolla's/Cellica's, catch the drift?


In the 80's Honda went into the UK with an Accord variant (Stirling?) that was even sold here for a time, it fizzled.

Europeans HAVE been spoiled for choices with their own cars, I didn't follow the introduction of Japanese cars into the market myself.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:40 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CotyM View Post
For one thing in Europe gasoline ranges between twice and 3x as much as it is in the states so you're left with allot of people driving small econo boxes. The focus is praised due to it's high fuel economy (especially in Europe where it has more engine option including a 1.6 and a diesel) while remaining a relatively cheap car that has some room isn't to small and is well made. So the focus is a great middle ground between an econo box and a nice car. Like the SUVs everyone drives in the states.

let's see petrol in london is currently 1.07 euro per liter.

1.07 euro is 1.20USD
3.78 litres is one gallon

so 3.78 * 1.20 = 4.53 per gallon. Were I'm from gas is about $2.40 per gallon right now.
U.S. Gallon, Canadian and British gallon is different.
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Old 05-13-2015, 07:22 PM   #10
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In Europe the roads twist and turn and are fun to drive on. Here in the Midwest you just drive straight, turn at 90 degree angles and dodge the occasional pothole. I can't verify but I heard that Chrysler put a different steering system in the U.S. Chrysler 300 than the European one because Americans prefer a bigger dead-spot in the middle of the steering wheel.
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