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I traded in my 2000 Escort ZX2 for a 2011 Focus earlier this year and am already feeling a little less than confident about my decision. I didn't do a whole lot of shopping around, after 11 yrs and 177,000+ miles on my Escort I figured a Focus would be a good fit. It took a little while but I've gotten pretty attached to her now.

Here's the weirdness with her though, at about 4,000 miles I got the first oil change done at a Ford dealership near where I was visiting family (about 650 miles from my home). I declined the upsell offer of tire rotation, just wanted the oil change as I was anxious to get to the hospital to visit my terminally ill family member. The mechanic seemed annoyed with me from the start. Not sure what could have happened during the oil change but after that my brakes were squeaky and the steering felt loose. I also started to notice a hesitation during acceleration as if the gears weren't shifting at the right time. I mentioned this to several family members also on the trip who are mechanics, I was assured the shifting was normal, I'm just used to a manual not automatic. I was told the other things were imagined.During the second 1,300 mile round trip the following week I noticed the same issues, the steering felt a little more "loose" but this was attributed to strong winds.

I now have 15,000 miles on the car and continue to notice a hesitation on acceleration, especially if I slow down to turn a corner and accelerate while turning but also when I slow down and accelerate without coming to a complete stop. It seems like the car is also louder than it was when I bought it, just the general running noise. There is also a slight vibration while driving that I would almost be willing to accept as tire noise, but we haven't been able to find anything unusual with the tires. The vibration/shutter is often present when coasting, like going down hill, even if I'm not touching the brake. It has recently started to shutter more when I press the brake. And the last oddity, what appears to be a squeak from the rear passenger side suspension.

After dealing with a multitude of car problems last year I thought buying new would avoid dealing with anything odd for a couple more years. I haven't been able to get the car in to be checked but did call a local dealer to discuss issues with their mechanic. His tone and response suggested what my family mechanics have already said...I'm imagining things. So, has anyone had any similar issues that might suggest I'm not nuts on this?

Thanks
 

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Unless I was driving the vehicle myself, I can't really comment one way or another. I have a 2011 and the brakes are a tiny bit squeaky/scrape-y after it rains (until it gets the rust on the rotors off), but only when you're very lightly tapping the brakes.

Every time I get an oil change (every 3,000 miles...religiously), I also get the tires rotated (free) as well as get an alignment, since I have an alignment plan through NTB (definitely worth the money, btw). Every time I get my car back, they've corrected my alignment, but the car will have a specific speed band where there will be slight vibration. After about 500-1,000 miles, the tires have adjusted, and the vibration disappears.

I haven't heard anything squeaking in the suspension, and since you're driving an automatic, I'm guessing that the slowness might be due to the computer trying to save fuel. It adapts to your driving style. Maybe if you put the pedal to the floor a few times, you'll notice that it picks up a little faster. It might also just be because the transmission wants to shift in order to conserve fuel, and when you suddenly change your mind and want to accelerate quickly, it has to finish its previous shifting pattern before it can downshift again. I used to notice that with my '97 Escort. I would feather the throttle to keep it from shifting into fifth if I new I needed to accelerate again within the next couple seconds.

That said, I bought my 2011 at the end of November (with 7 miles on it), and I just hit 20k miles today. I have no complaints other than the A/C making the car acts like it's an 80 year old man.


Hopefully those will be useful reference points for you!
 

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Take one problem at a time. First off, if you have a tire store nearby you that you like, see if they offer lifetime alignments. Most places are doing this. I use Firestone myself, and it really is free- I have to use stick-on weights, so I go in often for balancing and alignment.

They should check the tightness of the tie rod ends which would be the only place that it would be screwed up that I could think of. That is the most important one for safety.

As far as the hesitation, take that back to the dealer you bought the car from. It's hard to say what it is, but I have heard that is related to the "fly by wire" TB.
 

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I traded in my 2000 Escort ZX2 for a 2011 Focus earlier this year and am already feeling a little less than confident about my decision. I didn't do a whole lot of shopping around, after 11 yrs and 177,000+ miles on my Escort I figured a Focus would be a good fit. It took a little while but I've gotten pretty attached to her now.

Here's the weirdness with her though, at about 4,000 miles I got the first oil change done at a Ford dealership near where I was visiting family (about 650 miles from my home). I declined the upsell offer of tire rotation, just wanted the oil change as I was anxious to get to the hospital to visit my terminally ill family member. The mechanic seemed annoyed with me from the start. Not sure what could have happened during the oil change but after that my brakes were squeaky and the steering felt loose. I also started to notice a hesitation during acceleration as if the gears weren't shifting at the right time. I mentioned this to several family members also on the trip who are mechanics, I was assured the shifting was normal, I'm just used to a manual not automatic. I was told the other things were imagined.During the second 1,300 mile round trip the following week I noticed the same issues, the steering felt a little more "loose" but this was attributed to strong winds.

I now have 15,000 miles on the car and continue to notice a hesitation on acceleration, especially if I slow down to turn a corner and accelerate while turning but also when I slow down and accelerate without coming to a complete stop. It seems like the car is also louder than it was when I bought it, just the general running noise. There is also a slight vibration while driving that I would almost be willing to accept as tire noise, but we haven't been able to find anything unusual with the tires. The vibration/shutter is often present when coasting, like going down hill, even if I'm not touching the brake. It has recently started to shutter more when I press the brake. And the last oddity, what appears to be a squeak from the rear passenger side suspension.

After dealing with a multitude of car problems last year I thought buying new would avoid dealing with anything odd for a couple more years. I haven't been able to get the car in to be checked but did call a local dealer to discuss issues with their mechanic. His tone and response suggested what my family mechanics have already said...I'm imagining things. So, has anyone had any similar issues that might suggest I'm not nuts on this?

Thanks
Hi KCNC06,

I'm sorry you've been unsatisfied with your dealer experiences. I'm sure you aren't going nuts. [:)] Please PM me with your VIN, contact information, mileage, & servicing dealer name/state so I can help.

~Natasha

P.S. I had a 1998 Escort ZX2. Loved that car so much! A hit-and-run ended that happy time, but I still miss it! I'm sure you will love your new Focus just as much, if not more!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
After three visits to the Service Center at my dealership I finally got the vibration/shudder fixed. During the first visit they decided to order some parts described in a couple TSB's. The second visit fixed the suspensions squeak but not the vibration/shudder (they thought the TSB repair would fix this). Got her back today after the third visit. The vibration/shudder was caused by a broken engine mount. Can't really think of a "good" reason a broken engine mount wasn't diagnosed earlier since the TSB repair that attempted to fix the vibration/shudder involved one of the engine mounts. Why not inspect the engine mounts while you're looking at the car instead of just installing a part mentioned in a TSB? Especially when you're installing a part ON an engine mount!
 

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After three visits to the Service Center at my dealership I finally got the vibration/shudder fixed. During the first visit they decided to order some parts described in a couple TSB's. The second visit fixed the suspensions squeak but not the vibration/shudder (they thought the TSB repair would fix this). Got her back today after the third visit. The vibration/shudder was caused by a broken engine mount. Can't really think of a "good" reason a broken engine mount wasn't diagnosed earlier since the TSB repair that attempted to fix the vibration/shudder involved one of the engine mounts. Why not inspect the engine mounts while you're looking at the car instead of just installing a part mentioned in a TSB? Especially when you're installing a part ON an engine mount!
I'm sorry the repair wasn't as speedy as it could have been, but glad it's been resolved. Keep me in mind if you have any further questions. [:)]

~Natasha
 
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