Last post on Aug 28, 2013 at 11:08 AM
You are in the Ford Focus
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Ford Focus, Ford Focus SVT, Fuel Efficiency (MPG)
#35 of 185 2005 Ford Focus ZX4 ST 2.3l manual
Oct 18, 2006 (6:55 am)
These results are for a 2005 Ford Focus ZX4 ST with the 2.3 liter Duratec engine and 5-speed manual transmission (as are all STs)and 25,000 miles. I bought the car used but there are no obvious signs of wear. It is fully optioned (so I assume the heaviest version.) It easily passes for new. It does mean someone else did the initial break-in of the engine. The original owners were happy enough to replace the Focus with a new Ford Fusion -- a returning customer is a good sign with a used car.
So far with about 2,000 miles of experience, I am averaging 27-28 mpg. My standard gasoline is a 10% ethanol blend that may cut economy some as ethanol has a lower energy density than pure gasoline. My mix of highway and city is about 60/40. The lowest measurement was an all-in-town tank at 24.8 mpg.
Interstate driving at 70 mph + is yielding right at 30 mpg with several runs between Des Moines and Minneapolis at around 70-75 mph (the prevailing speed).
I've really only done one long road trip on 55 mph roads and as an experiment pegged the cruise at 55 to see how much better I could do than at Interstate speeds. Pretty good as it turns out. Over 250 miles it yielded 37.9 mpg.
I'm happy with these results as the 2.3 liter manual is a very flexible drive train in the Focus. In town it cuts and thrusts with verve. Freeway entrance acceleration is great. My only complaint is road noise at highway speeds, but it is an economy car, not a Buick. The road noise is more tire noise than wind noise. The throaty exhaust note is great and part of the fun and I wouldn't change it.
The ST delivers a fun, flexible sedan that can be sporting when your foot is heavy and efficient when you're willing to go slow. It is tempting when the engine responds so willingly.
There are cars that do much better but the cost of acquisition is generally much higher or they are much smaller. I had a much loved Suzuki Swift for many years that was reliable as could be but frankly a tin can for safety. I never tested the Swift's crash worthiness but was always aware I didn't want to hit anything in it. The Focus by contrast is a real car, larger and more solid, with only slightly less fuel economy and a huge boost in perceived power and sophistication. I still don't want to hit anything but the ST has better active safety (serious P6 tires, ABS and traction control) and reasonable passive safety (side air bags and reasonable front collision scores for a small car). In the value equation the Focus ST scores well in my experience.
#36 of 185 Re: 2005 Ford Focus ZX4 ST 2.3l manual [basiliskst]
Oct 18, 2006 (4:06 pm)
imo, great review. i have an '04 zts with the same drivetrain. the engine is amazingly flexible.
my car has slightly smaller tires, so it gets a bit better mileage. it has never been on a 250 trip.
wish i had that exhaust system to 'st' has.
#37 of 185 svt mpg??
Dec 16, 2006 (6:05 pm)
i thought this forum was for svt focii strictly, all i see is focus wagon and sedans , whats up ???
#38 of 185 Re: svt mpg?? [svt_rs]
Dec 16, 2006 (6:38 pm)
thre are several ways to get to a particular forum. they are not always obvious. 2.3 kicks butt!
#39 of 185 Re: Focus MPG
Dec 31, 2006 (6:44 pm)
2001 Focus, 2.0 liter 16 valve engine, 5sp trans. I get 32 mpg on a regular basis - 35-36 on trips (drive to DC from the Philly area 1-2/month). One trip to North Carolina got 40mpg. Best car I ever owned!!
Feb 23, 2007 (7:38 pm)
11/26/2000-2/22/2007 (Purchased 11/20/2000 with 20 miles)
2000 Ford Focus SE
16 valve 2.0L Zetec
$5779 in maintenance costs
Maintenance Cost per mile: $0.04/mile
Gas Cost: $.08/mile
Total Purchase Price: $21000
Cost per mile (200000mile lifespan): $.105
Total CPM: $.225/mi
#41 of 185 2007 Ford Focus ZX4 ST 2.3l manual
Mar 18, 2007 (9:59 am)
I've got 9950 miles on my 2007 ST.
The comments on the 2005 ST also pertain to the 2007. It is a wonderful little car, IMO, the best "bang for the buck" in compact cars today. If I could change one thing, it would be to make it RWD. I traded a 1999 Miata in for the Focus, and the Focus is as much fun, in it's own way. If it were convertible and RWD, I'd not miss the Miata at all.
I've only made 2 modifications to the car. I replaced the stock rear sway bar with one 1mm larger, which gave the car near neutral handling, and replaced the mediocre Pirelli P6s with Goodyear Eagle F1 GS-D3s, of the same size as stock. Those two things really transformed the car.
I have kept very detailed records of fuel economy.
Overall is 27.01MPG with roughly 75% of that on cross country trips.
Worst fuel economy has been 20.41MPG with pure short trips and lots of idling. The next tank under the same conditions got me 21.96.
Normal Houston city commuting has been in the 24-25 MPG range.
Highway fuel economy has been higly dependent on speed.
Best has been 32.33MPG keeping speed in the 65-70MPH range.
70-75 usually gets 29-30MPG, while 80-85 nets 27-28MPG.
Looked at on a graph, fuel economy has been steadily climbing, especially in the first 5000 miles.
I wish the car had a higher final drive like the 2004s. I'm sure the fuel economy would be a good deal better, and I doubt acceleration would be hurt much, as the engine has torque to spare.
#42 of 185 Re: 2005 Ford Focus ZX4 ST 2.3l manual [basiliskst]
Apr 21, 2007 (9:19 pm)
Ditto to most everything written here. I too bought a used 05 ST with 25775 miles on it. My mileage has been consistently at 29.8 for the past three months. I gave up a fully loaded 05 Altima and paid cash (11288 incl tt&l)for this car and I absolutely LOVE it. I had a 96 Escort all the way till last summer when someone hit my daughter on the highway at 70 mph ad spun her. She was hit two more times by two other cars before coming to a stop. She had a cut on her foot and her two passengers were uninjured. The car was a total loss but actually, still started one more time even with the pulleys on the right side of the engine smashed in! I carry a piece of the front grill in the trunk of my Focus. I know, that's nuts but I can't help it. The car had 160000+ on it and still had the original clutch! I had recently replaced the original hoses and radiator on the car... Original hoses!!
This ST is like the Escort on steroids. Very fun to drive, loaded like the Nissan was and I'll take Ford reliability over Nissan any day. If you're thinking Focus, you owe it to yourself to test drive an ST!
#43 of 185 Focus mileage
Jan 27, 2008 (4:00 am)
We have two Focuses (Foci?). The '07 SE with standard engine, 15" wheels and auto gets between 27 and 33 mpg, while the '01 ZX3 with the Zetec engine, 5 speed and 16" wheels varies between 24 and 35 mpg. They have 48K and 85K miles, respectively.
#44 of 185 Re: Ford Focus Owners: MPG-Real World Numbers [KarenS]
Feb 08, 2008 (1:55 pm)
I drive my 200 ZX3 a mix of city and highway, mostly to work and back, and have consistently gotten an average of 29.5 mpg. I tend to drive at about 70mph on the highway and could probably improve my mileage by slowing down a bit. On the other hand, I have gotten 80,000 miles on my first set of front brakes, so I must not be wasting too much gas mileage to braking.