TTAC - Refreshed Ford Focus (or should that be Refried?)

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by TriShield, Oct 18, 2007.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    [​IMG]
    Huh?

    By Robert Farago
    October 18, 2007

    Is the guy who wraps duct tape around Ford’s engine wires a “core worker?” If so, even a two-tier contract with the United Auto Workers won’t rid FoMoCo of their duct tape messiah. And that means we’ll never see proper plastic jacketing on their entry-level model’s electric leads, or, at the very least, a plastic cover hiding the Focus’ handmade tape worms. The fact that the black tape on a brand new Focus’ wiring is already unfurling is worrying– but nowhere near as disquieting as the cynicism infesting every nut and bolt and rock hard plastic panel of this po-faced makeover. What’s worse, the new Ford Focus looks as bad as its built.

    When Ford reskinned the Focus to take-on the bevy of B-class beauties prospering from the patronage of economy-minded American car buyers, who’d a thunk they’d use the Medusa-esque Chrysler Sebring as a template? The resemblance is uncanny– and ungodly.
    The domestic sedans share the same dopey proportions; simmer surfacing, inelegant side and hood strakes; flared and squared wheel arches and what-the-Hell-do-we-do now? rear side glass. Encountering the Focus for the first time is like discovering that a short, fat, balding Elvis imitator has a less attractive twin.

    The second time you clap eyes on the “new” Focus the detailing delivers the disastrous denouement. The front end is a dog’s breakfast; incomplete with a two-blade grill (the Fusion, Taurus and Edge get three) and a front bumper sculpted with a Play-Doh knife, that stands proud only in the literal sense. The Focus’ side air vents are an unintentionally hilarious affectation hearkening back to the days when rear wings adorned econoboxes. And I’m not saying the back end is frumpy and ungainly– just in case you think Ugly Betty is a babe.

    If Sam’s Club made an interior, this would be it: all the right bits in the right places without any color, style or comfort. Mind you, my tester was an SE stripper: no ambient lighting, all-weather floor mats or fancy SYNC™ system to connect your pacemaker to your iPhone. More importantly, the Focus’ steering wheel doesn’t adjust for reach and there’s so little rear seat legroom that the front seat backs are stuffed with ground-up Nerf balls.

    All this would be forgivable– no wait, it isn’t. Save the Chevy Aveo, every other economy car's cabin has a little something to recommend it. The Focus doesn’t. Sure, Ford’s eliminated the previous model’s egregious ergonomics, but I prefer the old gauges and clearly delineated stereo and climate controls. The new Focus’ interior may be wildly inoffensive, but it still reeks of cheap.

    Nobody who’d buy a Focus would expect it to be anything other than frugal. And it isn’t. Yes, the Focus’ 2.0-liter Duratec is a smooth and parsimonious mill (helped by spare tire deletion), but the four banger is plenty loud, with a sonic signature that’s about as appealing as a motel vacuum cleaner. The hard-as-nails Hankook all-season rubber adds to the din, which includes an unpleasant graunching noise (and burning brake smell) whenever you beat the Focus’ rear drums to retard hard-won forward progress.

    On the positive side, the Focus’ steering rack is a delight, with perfect weighting, a well-judged turning ratio and more-than-merely adequate road feel. Whether you’re changing directions during high-speed highway treks or low-speed parking maneuvers, the car goes exactly where you point it, The Focus’ eight-year-old chassis’ motions are also well controlled, with minimal body lean or nose dive. As a result, the sedan isn’t entirely corner-aversive.

    But with such little pep on tap, cheap shoes and more understeer than a freight train, who cares?
    By the time you get a Focus up to speed, the tires have already answered the Deliverance-style inquiry into porcine imitation. In case you were wondering (and I haven’t made myself clear), buying a Focus SE for driving pleasure is like purchasing a Ferrari 599 for mechanical reliability.

    The Focus’ ride quality is the more important consideration; Ford’s normally brilliant chassis engineers got the balance between “Euro-inspired” handling and American-style comfort exactly wrong. The Focus driver feels every lump and bump. The physical sensations are muffled, but there they are, sounding like the report of distant cannon fire. There’s no glossing over the fact that the Focus’ aged underpinnings have outlived their usefulness; they give the car’s dynamics the mien of mean.

    My biggest problem with the new Ford Focus isn’t the new Ford Focus. It’s the Mazda3. For a couple grand more than the box-fresh Ford, you get coherent exterior style, a classy cabin, an adult-compatible rear compartment, a better sounding powerplant, vastly superior handling, greater residuals and an engine bay without a trace of duct tape. Considering Ford’s relationship with Mazda and their long history of badge-engineering… Oh well. I guess Ford just couldn’t admit they’ve lost Focus.

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    The end. If only. (Mexico gets the Euro-Focus?)

    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=5866
     
  2. Ghost Load

    Ghost Load i'll see your kidcarson and geekboy and raise you OT Supporter

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    yeah right then you stalk me
    shit. reading. out.
     
  3. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    Meanwhile the rest of the world can buy the new one.

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    While Ford sells us the 8-year old one built in Mexico.
     
  4. therealciviczc

    therealciviczc New Member

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    Holy fucking ugly. How does something that looks like that get past the drawing board.
     
  5. WhiteG60

    WhiteG60 Just some guy.

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    They want to reskin the mk1 AGAIN? Why not just bring the one that.. you know, is actually a decent car and is already in mas production in Europe over here?
     
  6. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    European Focus > bag of shit > US Focus

    :wtc:
     
  7. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    Cost. With the UAW, the price of the Focus and the retooling necessary would make it too $$$.
     
  8. CJPA

    CJPA New Member

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    Holy shit that is hot for a Focus...ours gets progressively uglier and less sporty every year :rofl:
     
  9. kaldurak

    kaldurak Gimme some sugar baby.

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    Heaven forbid the US ever gets the Euro Focus or the Cosworth Focus.
     
  10. WhiteG60

    WhiteG60 Just some guy.

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    BUT ITS ALREADY IN MASS PRODUCTION. Why not just import them from Europe then?
     
  11. Dr. Zoidberg

    Dr. Zoidberg the lovable tramp

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    wtf, the euro one is nice. why do we get shit?
     
  12. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    You should see the Mondeo (our old Contour). It was the hot car that Danial Craig drove to the resort in Casino Royale.
     
  13. insomnia

    insomnia New Member

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    or the new RS:

    The couple reviews I've read about the new focus haven't been as bad as that one, aside from the horrid aesthetics :o
     
  14. CJPA

    CJPA New Member

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    I remember that--I wouldn't call it "hot" but I wouldn't be averse to driving one.
     
  15. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    Has to be redesigned to meet US crash tests and would most likely be built in the US, like the old Contour and original Focus.
     
  16. nateg

    nateg New Member

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    :wackit:

    Unions are shit.
     
  17. autox

    autox OT Supporter

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    doesnt the euro focus sell for about $30kUSD though? Its so hot, but americans wont pay that
     
  18. WhiteG60

    WhiteG60 Just some guy.

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    But they'll redo the Mustang again in 2 or 3 years, and redo the F150 in another 3 or 4 years... but the focus, which SHOULD be their bread and butter car, they'll wait 10+ years?
     
  19. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    I think it's hot:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Tommy

    Tommy Long Member Standing

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    F150 is the most sold vehicle in the world so they will make that a #1 priority. The Mustang is an "image vehicle" to represent Ford so that too will take priority. :wtc:
     
  21. Dr. Zoidberg

    Dr. Zoidberg the lovable tramp

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    i'd buy one of those without hesitation if they sold them here
     
  22. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    DOWANT
     
  23. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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    I doubt it. Neither of which are a problem with GM and the Astra.
     
  24. Dr. Zoidberg

    Dr. Zoidberg the lovable tramp

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    AWD 300hp I6 :eek3:

    fuck YES
     
  25. nateg

    nateg New Member

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    The more I see shit like this(Like the RS), the more I just want to pack my shit up and move to Ireland.
     

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