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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A friend needs to replace his car, and is thinking about late-model Focus SE or Titanium. But he needs reliability. I told him my '02 and my wife's '05 have been great for over a decade. But he has heard there are some transmission issues with the 2012-up automatics.

Can anyone report if there are issues, and if they should be considered serious enough to factor into what could otherwise be a great car?

Thanks,
 

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Moved to the MkIII section,

Here & in the Tsb, recall & problems section for the MkIII you can find plenty of information.

Problems can be significant, and range from not being happy with the feel to "lemons" with repeated Dealer visits for repairs. '12-eary '14 has an extended warranty on some of the most likely problems (clutches/seals/programming) to 100,000 and the TCM is covered through 80,000, normal drivetrain warranty to 60,000/5 yr..

I've only seen a couple posts from folks involved with fleets to help determine frequency of major repair, those showed about 10% needing major service. Hard to quantify, as most posts are related to problems. '12 was the worst for many issues, serious ones should be addressed by now.

None are immune to trouble, including '14's, though if you look back at old posts the earlier cars had some with "new car" transmission problems as well.

Most suggest a long test drive including stop & go traffic to check out a used car, and it's a good idea to take one in a new car as well to see if the different way it drives is acceptable.

(Short answer)
 

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The ImpoSTer
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Also if you can drive stick the manuals have almost no issues compared to the autos. Both are still very good but it seems with the auto you are rolling the dice so to speak.
 

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If Ford would step up & address this issue head on instead of putting bandaid after bandaid on it they would have a otherwise awesome car. It's only downfall is the DCT transmission... They never advertised it as a dual clutch trans, they refer it to a "automatic".... The following is a exact qoute from their manuals & online website

"Part of what makes Focus so satisfying to drive is its fully engaging available PowerShift 6-speed automatic transmission, which delivers seamless gear changes and excellent responsiveness. Select models also include SelectShift technology which allows you to change gears at the touch of a button. SelectShift is standard on the SE Appearance Package and on the Titanium".

Since my wifes car hit around 400 miles, it has been the exact opposite of the discription above. Started off as a intermittent Herky jerky when taking off from a stop, noises & grinding sounds, expecially when making left turns, slipping in first going into second gear... its ridiculous & getting worse.

A clutch wears out, plain & simple thru normal use. Just like the pads on your brakes, it has to be replaced... If I had known that it was a dual clutch automated manual, I would have put more thought before the purchase of my wifes car... Which now has 7700 miles on her '14 hatchback and in need of a new clutch. We already been to the dealer & they informed us that its on backorder... My wife lately has been increasingly up my backside about this.. I'm a ford guy & it was me that convinced her to get it and now I feel like a ass. I convinced her to trade in her perfectly fine 2010 cobalt which was almost paid off and now its bitting me where the sun dont shine so Ford, if you're listening, please save me. She is seriously considering trading in her "lemon" and looking at Nissan's & Honda's now...

On the other hand, I too bought a '14 Focus hatchback for myself (after trading in my perfectly fine '12 Mustang) I have just turned 900 miles and so far no issues at all, runs/shifts fine & love it..

But from what I've been reading its only a matter of time... We're not wealthy people & we both need reliable transportation...
 

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If Ford would step up & address this issue head on instead of putting bandaid after bandaid on it they would have a otherwise awesome car. It's only downfall is the DCT transmission... They never advertised it as a dual clutch trans, they refer it to a "automatic".... The following is a exact qoute from their manuals & online website

"Part of what makes Focus so satisfying to drive is its fully engaging available PowerShift 6-speed automatic transmission, which delivers seamless gear changes and excellent responsiveness. Select models also include SelectShift technology which allows you to change gears at the touch of a button. SelectShift is standard on the SE Appearance Package and on the Titanium".

Since my wifes car hit around 400 miles, it has been the exact opposite of the discription above. Started off as a intermittent Herky jerky when taking off from a stop, noises & grinding sounds, expecially when making left turns, slipping in first going into second gear... its ridiculous & getting worse.

A clutch wears out, plain & simple thru normal use. Just like the pads on your brakes, it has to be replaced... If I had known that it was a dual clutch automated manual, I would have put more thought before the purchase of my wifes car... Which now has 7700 miles on her '14 hatchback and in need of a new clutch. We already been to the dealer & they informed us that its on backorder... My wife lately has been increasingly up my backside about this.. I'm a ford guy & it was me that convinced her to get it and now I feel like a ass. I convinced her to trade in her perfectly fine 2010 cobalt which was almost paid off and now its bitting me where the sun dont shine so Ford, if you're listening, please save me. She is seriously considering trading in her "lemon" and looking at Nissan's & Honda's now...

On the other hand, I too bought a '14 Focus hatchback for myself (after trading in my perfectly fine '12 Mustang) I have just turned 900 miles and so far no issues at all, runs/shifts fine & love it..

But from what I've been reading its only a matter of time... We're not wealthy people & we both need reliable transportation...
Hi RonW956,

I've looked into your case and updated the notes, as well as reached out to your CSM for a call. Please keep me updated on how your wife's Focus is doing so I can keep the notes accurate and timely.

Meagan
 

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Hi RonW956,

I've looked into your case and updated the notes, as well as reached out to your CSM for a call. Please keep me updated on how your wife's Focus is doing so I can keep the notes accurate and timely.

Meagan

Will do thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the advice. H's wanting to buy one, but needs real reliability. He may just go with a manual.
 

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Thanks for all the advice. H's wanting to buy one, but needs real reliability. He may just go with a manual.

I really wanted a manual but after a 500 mile radius search there were none, so I opted for a "auto".... All the negative reviews I've seen online were about the auto, hardly any for the manual tranny... good luck!
 

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Focus Preacher
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Went with the manual version... never regretted my decision...fun car to drive!!

Bonus...its cheaper than the DCT!
 

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I can't speak of the long term reliability. But I can tell you my experience so far.
I bought our SE sedan new. First new Ford car we have ever purchased. Drove on vacation with a few hundred miles on it and the car just quits pulling while running down the road. Had to pull into the emergency lane and shut it off and restart it before it would "go" again. Had the same experience twice coming home from vacation.
Took car to dealer and was told "it's learning how you drive", funny my 2013 F150 is still learning "how I drive" but that is a completely other story.
Last week it started bogging down on take off and the jerking between shifts. Took to dealer, they reset something and said the pressure was off on something that it is good to go now but it will take awhile before it does right because again "it has to learn how you drive".
Tonight taking off from a 3 way stop the car starts jumping, like literally the front end was bouncing up and down and some weird loud grinding and popping sounds coming from it. So again I will take it back to the dealer and I am sure they will tell me the same thing again.
Needless to say I am very unhappy. I bought this car new in July and I am honestly afraid to drive it. For a car to just quit pulling in 70 mph traffic is just a safety hazard and risky.
The next time someone ask me "have you switched drivers lately because these transmissions have to learn how you drive" lecture I may not be so polite. It has nothing to do with who's driving it they apparently have a problem and don't know how to fix it.
As far as reliability I am afraid I would say as of right now my car isn't reliable. I am taking it in one more time but if it does it again it is gone and that will be my first and last Ford car. I am probably going to do the same thing with my first Ford truck if that problem doesn't get resolved as well.
 

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Look in the mkIII problems archive here, especially some of makaloco's videos & you'll find some better info on your problems.

TCM is the most likely, not the typical "shudder" from clutch problems on earlier ones (and a few current). It can be as simple as a poor chassis ground from the Battery to mimic the more serious TCM issues.

In some ways we're ahead of many Dealers, as this problem isn't as common as other ones they see.
 

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Infidel
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Bought my '13 Focus SE hatch used, it was a former Enterprise rental car. She had a bad chattering, shuddering, and jerking problem in the lower gears that happened about 35 to 40% of the time, when I first got her. Four months and 7600 miles later, all the shuddering, chattering, and jerking has disappeared. All I did was keep driving her like she has a manual transmission, (Because it is an automatically shifted and clutched, manual transmission.)
 

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Just goes to show that Ford is not keeping the dealers up to date on this growing issue. As consumers, when we make a large expensive purchase such as a car, we expect the car to operate as advertised with no issues or problems...We understand that it is a mechanical machine and that machines do on occasion break down or need a part replaced but the growing # of dct issues & complaints is very concerning to me cause both me & my wife bought 2014 Focus's within the past year. We live check to check and need reliable & safe transportation. Unfortunatley, her Focus is experiencing DCT woes with just 7700 miles. I hardly drive mine however I have not had a issue with mine yet with just over 900 miles.... I'm a Ford guy at heart & it really deeply disappoints me that such a great little car like the Focus is ruined by a Transmission by someone who probably dropped the ball on it and rushed it into production before it was really ready....That's the impression I get..
 

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Ron I agree. I was not a Ford guy until the "bailout". When it was time for a new truck I supported Ford and bought a new F150 4x4. When it was time for a car I bought our Focus. Honestly that car out performs my mom's new BMW on so many levels it isn't funny. But this transmission is turning me away real quick. We bought this car for a long term vehicle, (I kept them til the wheels fall off although I am meticulous about the care of my vehicles), but I am honestly afraid to drive it. When your vehicle just stops going on interstate (3 times) and once while in the turning lane on a 4 lane street you start to wonder if your gonna get hit. All it takes is that one incident and the worst can happen.

I understand things are mechanical and you are going to have problems. But I wasn't expecting it within the first few hundred miles of being new.

I am just very disappointed that I have spent that much money on a new vehicle that we are just unsure about driving it. Then when you take it in and they tell you it is learning how you drive. Just leaves me wondering.
 

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Find another Dealer and/or get in touch with Meagan the Ford rep here to help in dealings with them.

The issues are entirely different between your two cars, the not wanting to go actually has two possibilities (throttle body/wiring & TCM/ground/wiring) but a reset needed by a restart favors the TCM guess. The "learning" comments don't even apply for your symptoms.

Ron's sounds like the shudder issue, even though he didn't specify in this post. The "how to drive a DCT" thread stickied at the top has some good suggestions to make life easier with one, particularly if problems aren't severe. They can help a lot when the issue doesn't meet the specs for major repair.

I already mentioned the videos stickied in the problems section & in the general Tech stickies for more info..

Brand new vehicles & old worn ones are the worst for issues, any Truck driver wants to drive one starting in the second year & getting out by the end of the fifth. Avoids new problems & time for parts replacement problems that way.

Luck
 

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Find another Dealer and/or get in touch with Meagan the Ford rep here to help in dealings with them.

The issues are entirely different between your two cars, the not wanting to go actually has two possibilities (throttle body/wiring & TCM/ground/wiring) but a reset needed by a restart favors the TCM guess. The "learning" comments don't even apply for your symptoms.

Ron's sounds like the shudder issue, even though he didn't specify in this post. The "how to drive a DCT" thread stickied at the top has some good suggestions to make life easier with one, particularly if problems aren't severe. They can help a lot when the issue doesn't meet the specs for major repair.

I already mentioned the videos stickied in the problems section & in the general Tech stickies for more info..

Brand new vehicles & old worn ones are the worst for issues, any Truck driver wants to drive one starting in the second year & getting out by the end of the fifth. Avoids new problems & time for parts replacement problems that way.

Luck
On my wife's 2014 SE Hatchback, it was bought new with 4 miles on it. it ran perfectly up until around 400 miles or so. At first we felt a intermittent shudder when taking off from a stop. It would come, then disappear for a few days or a week, then come back... Gradually it got worse, especially while running errands around town. Now we can hear metallic clanking sounds from the trans and it slips (shudders) in first & sometimes into 2nd. Not all the time, most of the time we hear the "noises" is when it starts to shudder... usually after its been driven around for awhile..... on one way trips such as just going to work, park it for 8 hrs then drive home, nah.... it runs/shifts fine for the most part but lately the shudder has been getting more frequent.

This is the only issue she has with otherwise is a enjoyable car. But damm dude... as word gets around as time goes by, nobody is going to touch these car's if we ever go to sell them because the public is going to believe the DCT trans is flawed. There goes our resell value... Car cost $22,000.

The dealer informed us that the clutch is "shot" and that a new one is on backorder, wont be until "december" and the car will be in the shop for 2 days. We will be getting rev. F... I really hope that this will take care of the problem but unfortunately everywhere I read tells me that this is only the beginning of our woes and now I feel like an ass cause it was me that convinced her to trade in her '10 cobalt, her first car that she bought new under her name and that was 1 year from being paid off...And now she's asking me to look at Hyundai's & Honda's as a replacement if the problems with the trans continue.... [?|]
 

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Sailor I have found a lot of good useful information on here and I do appreciate you steering me in it's direction. While I am disappointed in my purchase I am hoping the issues can get resolved and we can move forward. Me and my wife both loved that car when we originally purchased it. "Money vs What you get" I think it's the best value on the road. That being said I do not have that same sentiment right now. Hopefully we can get straightened out. I kinda had plans for this car.
 

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Hope both of you get good fixes soon, it's disappointing to see a large number with problems.

I was hopeful when these were introduced that we'd see a Factory shift paddle option within a year or two & the DCT cars would be quicker than the manuals - like Porsche has managed now with their version.

All of the ones I'd seen prev. to the Focus introduction had been troublesome , but the latest versions were much improved. I'd hoped that the Focus version would start out decent & quickly be tweaked to very good.

Dealers not being good at handling repairs to the new tech., and continuing problems for them to deal with has made it worse than it could have been.

Passing useful info. around is all we can do to help.
 
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