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Old 02-21-2013, 09:40 AM   #1
ddderek
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Want to Buy RELIABLE model year for daughter?

Hey Group, I need the advice of some experienced Focus owners, What is the most reliable longest lasting models years to look for? I am purchasing a used to car to eventually give to my daughter and usually get a 2 year old model for half the price of new...
1) Are the 2011 models reliable?
2) How many miles is the normal range without major repairs?
3) What common repairs do certain model years almost always need and at what mileage?

I have a Ford 500 and Taurus and both have been long lasting reliable vehicles... as well as our 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid, but I want to switch the Hybrid for a regular car that can be passed off... Don't want to pass off a car that may need a $10,000 battery to be replaced!


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Old 02-21-2013, 10:33 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddderek View Post
Hey Group, I need the advice of some experienced Focus owners, What is the most reliable longest lasting models years to look for? I am purchasing a used to car to eventually give to my daughter and usually get a 2 year old model for half the price of new...
1) Are the 2011 models reliable?
2) How many miles is the normal range without major repairs?
3) What common repairs do certain model years almost always need and at what mileage?

I have a Ford 500 and Taurus and both have been long lasting reliable vehicles... as well as our 2006 Ford Escape Hybrid, but I want to switch the Hybrid for a regular car that can be passed off... Don't want to pass off a car that may need a $10,000 battery to be replaced!
I heard this car is super reliable!
http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=309664



But in all seriousness.. if the MKIII Focus wasn't so damn sexy.. I wouldn't be selling my MKII.. that car is a pleasure to drive, gets 35 mpg, and never gave me a problem.
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:37 AM   #3
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We had an '09 SE that we traded in for our '12 and we had it for 33,000 trouble free miles and easily was getting 30mpg with mostly city driving. Great car just not as exciting to drive as the new Focus.
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Old 02-21-2013, 10:44 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by RonMaiden View Post
We had an '09 SE that we traded in for our '12 and we had it for 33,000 trouble free miles and easily was getting 30mpg with mostly city driving. Great car just not as exciting to drive as the new Focus.
Exactly.
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Old 02-21-2013, 05:16 PM   #5
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Not enough miles to test?

Neither of you had yours long enough to really test it? How many miles are folks getting on their Focus these days without major repairs?

100K? 150K?

I was always concerned about the Focus cause little cars have little parts that wear out faster in my experience...

any long rangers care to comment?
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:33 PM   #6
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My family has two high-milers still in service (not including my SVT with 80K on it), a 2001 ZX3 with a 215K Zetec engine and a 2005 ZX3 with 230K miles on it's Duratec engine. They're both still serviceable cars, if a bit tarnished and long in the tooth. The 2005 car has aged extremely well, aside from brakes and a fuel pump and wheel bearings, it's still driving like it was new. You're probably not considering a first gen car, but the Zetec engine cars (2000-2004) use a timing belt and it needs to be changed around every 100K miles, the later cars use the Duratec engine with a timing chain that you can pretty much ignore. Wheel bearings tend to go bad on both cars and I'm not sure if that was worked out in subsequent years, but I would call it a minor repair issue since the drivetrains seem to be fairly bulletproof in stock form.

If I were you (and totally disregarding what your daughter may want) I'd get a 2005 to 2011 car, it's been the same basic platform for a long time and I'd bet many of the kinks have been worked out. I rarely read about strange problems from those model years, in my opinion they're bland but very reliable cars, and still relatively engaging to drive.

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Old 02-21-2013, 08:40 PM   #7
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Great info!

Thanks, this is exactly what I was wondering...

230,000 on the 2005!!?

Wow, that's a lot of driving!

I was considering the 2011, I like to buy used cars as close to 20K miles as possible. They have dropped big time in value and still have most of their life left.
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Old 02-22-2013, 04:53 PM   #8
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There are only 2 engines to avoid with the focus:

SPI - only available in 2000-2004 sedan and wagon models, horrid little engines


SVT - available 2002-2004 zx3 and zx5 packages. These are the most powerful focus engine you can get (besides the new focus ST), and are actually quite good, but they are a bit finicky and require a bit more proactive maintenance, and aren't a great choice unless you are an enthusiast.



Starting with the 2005 models, most all foci came with the 2.0l Duratec engine, which is a rock-solid engine. The 2.3l Duratec is slightly more powerful and also a great engine, but they stopped making those in 2007.


In your case, anything from 2005-present is bound to be a good car, so long as you find one that hasnt been molested, and you do all the maintenance on time.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:30 PM   #9
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I am on my second Focus with the Zetec motor for a couple reasons. One, is the online support for this motor is outstanding. I have been able to do 90% of all repairs and upgrades on it just from this website alone. And the other, it's such an easy motor to work on, and there are always a good handful of Zetec Focus's in the junkyards (wrecked though! lol). Only reason I got rid of my first was the automatic started having issues and I used that as an opportunity to get into a manual.
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Old 02-24-2013, 10:11 AM   #10
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I am at 95k on my 2.3l Duratec and while I did replace the engine at about half that I still think it was due to something preexisting when I bought the car or because the Ford dealer left the oil cap off leaving me with an oil pressure problem. Even with that I would still sweat by any model with the Duratec. Wheel bearing are the only issue. I have already replaced the rears and I have another loud one. I don't understand why they chew them up so bad but its a cheap repair. Good luck!
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