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Old 01-19-2013, 09:20 AM   #21
whynotthinkwhynot
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We don't recommend purchasing SPI engines in any case- unless you know the owner, and the owner has told you that they had the valve seats repaired when doing a timing belt job. Valve seat repair is a very expensive job because the cylinder head will have to be removed- it would add $1500 or so to the cost of the car. Another reason the SPI sucks: 106 hp. Zetec: 135 hp, SVT 172 hp, 03-04 Duratec 151 hp.

You should identify the engines. If that 03 is a Dtec, then it's well worth what you're paying for it. Dtec engines have coil on plug ignition with the coils/plugs in the center of the valve cover, and no markings on the valve cover. 03-04 Dtecs are also referred to as PZEV engines, and were the only Focus available in Green States. In 05+, the Dtec displacement was decreased to 2.0L from 2.3L, and power output went down to 136 hp unless the car was an ST which still had the 2.3L.

02.5+ Focis have a different transmission cable set-up than 00-02.5 shift system. The shifter is different, and the cable connection to the transmission is different. Be sure what you're reading about when you're researching possible vehicle problems.
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Old 01-19-2013, 10:49 AM   #22
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I would never pay more $500 to $1,000 for any Focus from 2001 to 2004. I have bought 2 focus both were wagons. For the 2001 with 76,000 miles paid $450 and for a 2002 with 120,000 miles paid $500 I sold both for a nice profit. Just look in Kijiji anyone asking $1,500 just offer them $500 sooner or latter they will crack and just want the car out of their drive way.
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Old 01-19-2013, 12:09 PM   #23
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Hmmm I guess I have some thinking to do. Thanks again.
I'm looking at other focuses around here and similar cars are going for 3500+?! I might be stuck with SPI in a focus or an escort, The longer I wait on buying a car the less I will have to spend while driving the truck.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:04 PM   #24
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The SPI will cost you more in the long run, or maybe short run. There is no real way to tell when it it going to drop a valve seat, When it does- that's the last time you'll drive the car with that engine in it. You will not find an SPI in a junkyard, if you do, it will cost more than an SVT engine. An SVT, Duratec, or Zetec engine will not bolt up to the SPI transmission, so you will need a new transmission in order to convert, as well as wiring harness and computer modules. Why would I recommend something crazy like converting if it was so hard? Because it is cheaper to purchase a transmission, engine, harness, computer (or simply a wrecked vehicle), and convert an SPI than it is to find a junkyard SPI engine.

All hatchbacks are Zetec or Duratec engines. Only the sedans will possibly have the SPI engine. I suppose it's possible in a wagon, but I've never seen an SPI wagon.

You were warned. It's your money. Maybe you get lucky- who knows.
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Old 01-19-2013, 02:08 PM   #25
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I'm not opposed to a hatch, but people want way to much for cars around here, SPI or zetec. I'm not opposed to the engine swap.. but I wouldn't want to do it soon and obviously that could happen.
Both of the cars are a regular sedan, honestly I didn't even look at what trim level either of them are, I'm not being picky. Funny thing is, they are both identical colors inside and out.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:47 AM   #26
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I went and got the vin code.
1FAFP34PXYW333626
Eighth position... P. Crap.
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Old 01-20-2013, 10:58 AM   #27
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Hey Guys

I could have bought a 2000 Hatch-Back with 260k km (162k miles) new snow tires and the summer tires with a Zetec engine. The seller said it worked 100% till the key jammed and he also added that he had filled-up the tank a few days ago and was pissed now that it broke. He did not want to fix-it. Selling for $300 in the Toronto area. (It has sold as of this posting) I did not buy it it was to old and to many kms and it's cold to fix cars in the Toronto area. So shop around and never pay more then $500 for any Focus from 2000 to 2004. Later
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:02 AM   #28
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Well, you know what to look for. Another way to tell is that the good engines will always have the spark plugs going through the valve cover. The SPI has spark plugs going into the side of the head. The Focis are good cars other than that engine.

Now your later model Duratec engines might have a problem with the tumble flaps that are located inside the intake manifold. It makes a sound just like bad valve adjustment- but there is no valve adjustment. If you put a screwdriver on the valve cover and cup your ear up to the other side while it's running- you will hear no noises from inside the valve cover. That is the tumble flap problem. You might be able to talk down an owner who doesn't know what the problem is. They will think it is valve noise, and you can tell them that's a $1k repair (even though it's not), make a ridiculous offer, and see what happens. Chances are good that nobody else will purchase that car because of the noise, so they will take what they can get. I got a Honda a long time ago for $300 as a result of water pump noise that the owner thought was rod knock.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:06 AM   #29
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I like the way you guys think. One of these days I will have time to check out some other local places, if I have to I will settle for some other car and trade into a focus, I just like the cars compared to other crap.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:12 AM   #30
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Yes, and when you purchase your Focus you get this awesome community behind you

Keep looking, there will be more cars available. Avoid all Dodge Neons like the plague worse than SPI engines. Hondas are ok, but usually beat up and over priced. For a daily driver, I do like the Toyota Corolla. Those are easy to work on and fairly cheap to work on. Be wary of the lower crank pulley- check it with a flashlight while the engine is running. If it is wobbling, turn the engine off, look for damage to the timing cover. This is about a $300 repair if you take it to a shop. The pulley/balancer will have to be replaced or it will eat belts and damage the timing cover which can be expensive to replace. Other than that, those are really good little back and forth to work cars. Definitely not even slightly fast, but good for transportation.
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