In 2000, the year that the Ford Focus was introduced, Ford Motor Company had high hopes for the car that was created to replace the popular, but aging Escort. Instead, numerous minor quality problems plagued the vehicle and it soon became the butt of jokes throughout the industry. Step forward to 2005, and the current year model is a nice departure from earlier years. The 2005 Ford Focus has improved as it has aged; let’s examine what is helping the car to be a proven competitor in the crowded small vehicle segment:
- Yes, the number of cars available under $20,000 continues to drop each year. The Focus takes it one step further as it retails just below $15,000 when rebates and incentives kick in. Lesser quality Kias and Hyundais sell for nearly the same amount, so the consumer has a good chance to purchase something that will actually last in the Ford Focus.
- Most cars built today come in only one or two body styles. The Focus features four: a three-door ZX3 hatchback, a five-door ZX5 hatchback, a ZX4 sedan, and a ZXW wagon.
- Up to five people can be carried in the Focus and the interior room is spacious for a car of its class. Most small cars are unbearable for tall rear seating passengers, not so for the Focus.
- The 2.0L I4 engine mated to a five-speed manual transmission gives the car enough oomph to get it moving and keep moving at a nice clip on the highway.
- With EPA figures of 26 city / 35 highway, the Focus achieves a fuel mileage that few small cars can boast especially one capable of carrying five passengers.
Competition in the small car category remains tight with the Toyota Corolla, Chevrolet Cobalt, Mazda 3, and Suzuki Forenza all competitively priced. The Corolla remains the favorite of industry experts, but the Focus has certainly lost its problem child status with the latest model.
MSRP for the base model is $15,590 but incentives will bring the price down by as much as $750. If you are financing your purchase Ford Credit?s rates are very competitive; 0% financing is still available for some buyers; restrictions apply so check with Ford Credit to learn what you are eligible to receive.
In all, the Focus is a competitive entrant amongst small cars and is certainly worth a closer look by the serious car buyer.