Last post on Sep 02, 2013 at 8:37 AM
You are in the Ford Focus
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Ford Focus, Ford, Car Buying, Future Vehicle, Coupe, Hatchback, Sedan, Wagon
#243 of 1324 Re: 2012 Ford Focus transmissions [babbs3]
Apr 08, 2011 (5:41 pm)
The transmission in the new Focus is nothing like the POS 6 speed in the Fusion. I have a 2010 Fusion that I am trading in because of transmission and air in the cooling system concerns. The 2012 Focus has a 6 speed dual clutch dry transmission, the same trans that's in the 2011 Fiesta. Two internal gear sets divide the ratios in half, one odd gears, one even gears. One clutch is always engaged until the transmission needs to shift, allowing 100% of the engine torque to be continually transferred to the wheels. When a shift is needed, the clutch will come on to transfer the engine torque to the other gear set. I ordered an SEL, which along with the Titanium model has the Select Shift option. Before I ordered mine, I checked the Fiesta forums for any info on transmission problems since the Focus wasn't out yet. The only issue I could find involved a grounding strap which caused some programming issues and that's been resolved.
Apr 09, 2011 (6:35 pm)
I have a couple of noobish questions to square away.
First off, I assume alloy wheels and aluminum wheels are the same thing. For some reason, some of the non-steel wheels at the Ford configurator are listed as alloy and others as aluminum. By contrast, the Focus brochure (which also includes a $750 discount) I recently received lists all options as aluminum.
Secondly, can someone explain the difference between polished, painted, and machined alloy/aluminum wheels? Are some of these subcategories of the others? Also, what are the advantages and drawbacks of each type?
#245 of 1324 Re: wheel choices [gambit293]
Apr 09, 2011 (9:51 pm)
Alloy just means a mixture of metals. Most wheels these days are aluminum alloy but other metals are used as well. I don't get hung up on the actual composition of the wheels, use the terms interchangeable, and sometimes say aluminum alloy when there are other possibilities.
Whether the surface of the wheel are polished, painted, machined, etc doesn't mean much except for aesthetics. Again, it's what you prefer that counts. I actually like 16" wheels regardless of composition. They allow for higher profile tires which translate (all else being equal) to better ride quality and lower replacement cost.
Apr 11, 2011 (8:48 pm)
The 2012 Ford Focus SEL at my dealer's showroom was a disappointment. Although the fit and finish were excellent, the driver/passenger area is too cramped. The driver's seat in this car was at maximum rearward position. The sales rep couldn't get into the driver's side rear seat without squirming his way in. He did eventually get in with some difficulty. After that gyration, his knees did fit in the hollowed out back of the driver's seat. The battery was dead so there was no adjustment with the power seat feature.
The front grille/bumper assembly may please some. It's too busy and would make one wonder if this was a family car OR a sports car. The rear bumper has a stretch of latticework which looks out of place along the lower edge and detracts from the overall design.
Perhaps it's intended as a famsport or sportfam vehicle. That decision is up to the buyer.
If the intent was to compete with the Honda Civic, this Focus misses the target by a mile. I drive an '09 Focus SE and have more interior room than this design presents. The design shows some similarities to the Mazda.
If it was trade-in time for myself, I'd go with the Fusion...a design that has served well and still looks contemporary.
#247 of 1324 Re: First Look [netranger4]
Apr 12, 2011 (5:03 am)
I was curious about the size difference between my current 2010 Fusion and my new 2012 Focus so I compared some numbers.
Focus gain & loss: (front/rear)
Width w/mirrors: +1"
Head room: -.4"/+.1"
Shoulder room: -1.8"/-2.8"
Hip room -.1"/-.7"
Leg room: -.4"/-3.9"
Passenger volume: -9.6 cu ft
Cargo volume behind 2nd row vs trunk: +7.3 cu ft
Fuel Cap.: -5.1 gal
Focus 459 mi/tank 37mpg, Fusion 577/tank 33mpg
The only significant numbers are length, rear leg room, shoulder room and total passenger volume. (After all it's a C segment vs. a D segment car). The front seat numbers are so close I don't think I'll really notice much difference.
Since I originally compared these numbers, I've had a chance to sit in an SE hatch. I'm average size, slightly over weight and I didn't have any problem getting into either front seat. When I had the manual driver's seat adjusted to my liking, there was plenty of leg room for me in the back.
#248 of 1324 Re: First Look [netranger4]
Apr 12, 2011 (5:58 am)
Thanks for your thoughts, netranger. Can I ask how tall you are? How about the sales rep?
#249 of 1324 Re: First Look [gambit293]
Apr 12, 2011 (4:25 pm)
I'm 5'6" tall and the sales rep was 5'10 or so. We joked about the rear seat room. My comment was that Olive Oyl, Popeye's girl could probably
get in with no difficulty with the driver's seat in the rearward position.
If there had been more rear seat legroom, it would not have been necessary to hollow out the front seatbacks to accomodate the passengers knees.
This design was brought over from Europe with some modifications for the U.S market. However, Europeans tend to be rather trim and of moderate height. On several trips to the UK and Continental Europe I was amazed at the lack of overweight people.
The car would be right at home on the narrow streets found throughout Europe, which it was designed for. As I stated, the build quality was probably the best I've seen coming from U.S. assembly plants. Fit and finish beyond reproach.
The sales numbers will tell the story, as will future postings by discerning prospective purchasers.
#250 of 1324 Re: First Look [netranger4]
Apr 12, 2011 (7:29 pm)
Here's my two cents.
It's very, very quiet, even when compared to the mid-size segment, and the engine note is very nice. It has a little growl and never got rough when it revs up higher. It was very composed when pushed with very little body roll and the steering effort was just about right, not too heavy or light in my opinion. It's powerful enough for me, nothing spectacular though. I can't say anything bad about the drive. I'd say it makes the least amount of compromises of any of the compacts in that regard.
The front areas are not at all cramped. At maximum rearward position, I could hardly reach the steering wheel unless I pulled the telescoping wheel all the way out, and I'm 6'3". I pushed the steering wheel back in, moved my seat up, and lowered it. After I did that, I could sit behind myself, and I was comfortable in both places. Is it roomy? No, but my son's carseat fits back there well (He's 3). Cargo room was great.
It has just about anything and everything, but the learning curve is high. There are too many buttons. I would personal skip the MyTouch and stick with the regular Sync. I don't think Ford's quite got the MyTouch system down yet.
Does it hit the mark? I guess that depends on what your priorities are. Leg room is down from the previous model, but refinement, build quality, and mileage are all up. It's a far better looking and handling car. The 2012 Civic will still be middle of the pack but a good choice for reliability. The best competitors, in my opinion, would be the new Elantra or Cruze.
#251 of 1324 Re: First Look [arumage]
Apr 13, 2011 (2:27 am)
"The best competitors, in my opinion, would be the new Elantra or Cruze."
Unless one wants a sportier model with a stick shift, then the Elantra and Cruze are both ruled out and replaced by the likes of the Mazda3 and the Golf, Jetta, GTI, and GLI siblings.
#252 of 1324 Re: First Look [shipo]
Apr 13, 2011 (6:20 am)
True, but the new Jetta is a turd, even in GLI form (excluding the Sportwagen as it's still based on the previous model). It's far behind industry standard as far as fit and finish and materials quality. The GTI and Golf are premium entries, even when compared to the expensive Focus and Cruze, but they're still great options. The Mazda3 is still a good alternative, but it's not quite as well rounded as some of the others. It tends to err on the sportiness end of the spectrum at the expense of some content and efficiency.