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Old 11-20-2004, 01:00 PM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2004
Fan#: 15760
Location: Saskatoon, Sask. Canada
Posts: 2
FF Reputation: 1 jmackenzie3 Good Standing Member
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Started car shopping.... very skeptical...

I would like to request that the answer to this question be turned into an announcement or sticky. I realize these questions have been asked and answered 20 times here, but I just don't have time to spend searching 10,000 messages. I'm sure there are a lot of perspective focus buyers who would feel the same way...

I started shopping for a replacement car for my sister. Found a 2001 Focus wagon that looks perfect for her needs. Did a little research on the net. Found a lot of good reviews, but also found a disturbing number of reports about the crappy brake system in this series of cars, and a number of reports about engine fires and general poor quality in the 2000 and 2001 models. Found the web site and read through everything there. Now I'm paranoid...

Here are my questions:

1. Just how prevalent is the engine fire issue?

2. Just how prevalent is the brake wear problem? Does EVERYONE have this issue?

3. Is the problem just with the Ford manufactured components? If she buys this car and replaces the entire brake system with aftermarket parts, will she continue to experience premature brake failure?

4. She's a single mom with handicapped kids, and she DOES NOT have the budget or time to have her car in the shop 4 times a year getting $1000 brake jobs. She also lives in central Canada, where we have winter weather for 6 months a year, and having the car die 10 miles from a service station just will not fly with handicapped kids in the car. Should she just run as fast as possible away from these cars and avoid the heartache?

I realize this sounds like I might be trashing a car that you all probably know and love, but I'm getting conflicting reports here, and the best place I found for OBJECTIVE, no-bull assessments is a car lover's forum like this one.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give me....

jmackenzie3 is offline  
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