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Old 02-02-2006, 06:33 PM   #1
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Soon to buy....

What's up everyone? I'm new on here and I wanted to drop a line and get some opinions on a ford focus. I am an IT manager at a few car dealerships in southwestern Pa and I'm looking to get a new ride soon. I have been back and forth between all types of vehicles, Wrx, Vibe, Liberty pretty much from one end of the spectrum to the other. Well I think I finally settled on something that would be perfect for me.... You guessed it.. a Focus.

One of the dealerships that I work at is a Ford dealership so I can probably get any focus I want either from a dealer trade or from the auction. I can probably ask someone at the dealership these questions but I think most of us know that salesmen don't know a whole lot about the details on a car, rather, they know how to talk you into buying something whether it's a good vehicle or not.

Let me start by stating what I'm looking for... It's narrowed down to probably a ZX3 or ZX5. I want a hatchback for the ability to lug my drumset / skiis etc.. around. I'm on the fence as to which year / model to get. I don't know a whole lot about the changes over the years. I'm looking to be 2003 or newer. They just got a 03 zx3 5 speed with about 20k on it , that would run me about 7k. Are there any significant changes from 03 up that would make buying an older model something I would regret down the road, (power, handling, etc...) Also, are the SVT's just as reliable? I'm just wondering if the extra juice being squeezed out of the engine would diminish the engines life. Any info would be greatly appreciated...

Thanks
Ryan


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Old 02-02-2006, 06:58 PM   #2
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04 SVT - No questions asked. The engines are more reliable. They use different pistons, heads, seals and rods. Different transmission, suspension, etc.

If you have the chance to pick and choose.

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Old 02-02-2006, 07:11 PM   #3
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SVT in comp orange Yeah, definatly if you can get a SVT do it, sadly, i didnt have that choice. But the 03' ZX3 is a good car, i've had no major problems, just a few things here and there that you would find in any car.
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Old 02-02-2006, 07:15 PM   #4
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if you dont get an svt i would recommend trying to find a 2.3 zetec
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Old 02-02-2006, 08:20 PM   #5
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^^^same here, hey and welcome, im a musician too and that was one of the reason i got the hatch, its just so easy to load amps and other equiment in the back. If you can get the Zx5 itll be easier to lug things around with the extra set of doors, but if you cant find one, a zx3 is good too. I actually had to load my drumers set into my car once, it somewhat fit, most of the stuff fit but for somereason i was stupid and forgot to put the seats down so theyd probably definitly fit if you did that. Good luck, but whatever you get definitly try to get a 03+ so you dont have to worry about recalls or anything.
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Old 02-02-2006, 09:44 PM   #6
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ok I would like to talk more about NON SVT...
SVT
First... Yes SVT is hot and sexy and in 04 you get the 5y/100kmile warranty.. plus the SVT treatment..

CHANGES
The changes over the year are as follows:

SVT was offered from 2002 - 2004. Changes were mentioned above.
regular Focis worked throu several changes.

in late 2002 model year they got new maunal transmission
in late 2003 model year they got new automatic transmission

ENGINE
all pre-2003 Foci were either Zetec (130hp, 2.0l) or SPI (110hp, 2.0l).
From 2003 SPI is not offered, and 2.3liter Duratec is offered as an option (145hp).
Since 2005 model year, the Zetec enigine is not offered anymore. the stanard engine is 2.0l Duratec (136hp) and the ST (sport version) Sedan has the 2.3l Duratec, now tuned for 151hp.

2005 MAKEOVER
In 2005 Focus had its one makeover. The exterior look of the front of all foci and the rear of the seda nwere re-worked. Some like it some don't.
The interior was also re-worked - ford claims it being more upscale - again, some like it some don't.

MY CONCLUSION
Overall, your bers bet is 2004 2.3Duratec car. The new engine is much better and has growing aftermarket support. While you can find the 2.3l from 2003 model year, you might still have the older automatic which is weaker and might restrict you in the future.

I hope I helped.
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Old 02-02-2006, 09:58 PM   #7
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You mentioned WRX...I would take that one. It's in an entirely different class than the Focus...Even the WRX w/o the STi trim should be a blast.

I know this is sacrilegious to say here, but screw the Focus. If you can get a WRX, get it. That is only my opinion, now I will go back and drive my Focus until hopefully next year before I trade up.

Don't get me wrong, the Focus is a wonderful car, but you can get a whole lot more out of other cars.
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:02 PM   #8
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are the svts reliable? im sure ill get bashed for this but i would say no not very...get a normal zx3 or zx5; def. at least an 03.
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:09 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by fspeed
SVT in comp orange Yeah, definatly if you can get a SVT do it, sadly, i didnt have that choice. But the 03' ZX3 is a good car, i've had no major problems, just a few things here and there that you would find in any car.
i second that. the comp orange, just saw one for the first time yesterday in a drive-thru. never thought they looked too good until i actually saw it on the street...awesome.
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Old 02-02-2006, 10:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by GregsWhiteFocus
You mentioned WRX...I would take that one. It's in an entirely different class than the Focus...Even the WRX w/o the STi trim should be a blast.

I know this is sacrilegious to say here, but screw the Focus. If you can get a WRX, get it. That is only my opinion, now I will go back and drive my Focus until hopefully next year before I trade up.

Don't get me wrong, the Focus is a wonderful car, but you can get a whole lot more out of other cars.
As one of the Founders of the "Mazda3 Traitor Party" I wi lsecnd this. Focus is a great car.. and SVT is a very satisfying car, there are other options, and especailly if yo ucan afford something as exclusive as WRX etc, I would go for that.. you will love it.
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