Ford Focus

The Ford Focus is offered in 4-door sedan or 5-door hatchback forms in S, SE, Titanium, ST and RS trims--although hatchbacks aren't offered in base S form and the high-performance ST and RS are hatchback only.

The 2017 Focus offers a range engines possibilities. The smallest is a 1.0L 3-cylinder turbocharged "EcoBoost" engine. Owners choosing the 1.0L can expect excellent fuel economy, however power levels aren't as low as many would guess. The 1.0L engine makes a respectable 123hp and 125 lb-feet of torque. The next step up is a 2.0L direct-injection 4-cylinder engine, making 160 horsepower and 146 pound-feet of torque. Ford's Ti-VCT variable valve timing system helps provide stronger response through the rev range while saving fuel at other times. Ford anticipates up to 40 mpg on the highway. A 2.0L high-output turbocharged 4-cylinder engine powers the high performance Focus ST. It makes 252 hp and 270 foot-pounds of torque, ensuring strong acceleration from the Focus ST.

The even higher performance Focus RS features a turbocharged 2.3L 4-cylinder engine good for 350 horsepower and 350 lb-feet of torque. It's mated to a full-time all-wheel drive system and a 6-speed manual transmission as the only powertrain combination.

With a 4-wheel independent suspension--combining a semi-isolated front subframe and a control-blade multi-link rear suspension--along with 4-wheel disc brakes in all but the S and SE models, the Focus has stronger performance credentials than most small cars. The suspension is tuned to be quite firm yet has enough give to soak up heaves and potholes; Ford's electric power-steering system provides good steering weighting and responsiveness as well. In addition, a torque vectoring system, included with the standard stability control system, balances torque delivery between the front wheels for better poise out of corners.

Front seats in the Focus are supportive buckets, with even better, firmer bolstered ones provided with the Sport Package. Both the sedan and hatchback have about the same back-seat space--just ample for most adults. Cargo space is quite generous in either model, with a relatively wide trunk opening in the sedan. In either model, the back seat folds forward nearly flat.

The Focus S model is quite basic, but includes air conditioning, a tilt/telescopic steering wheel and CD sound as well as Ford's SYNC system with a 4" LCD display and Bluetooth. SE models add 16" alloy wheels, remote keyless entry, cruise control and Ford's MyKey system.

Titanium models add a limited-slip differential, fog lamps, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, proximity entry, dual-zone climate control and heated leather seats.

All Focus models but the base S come with Ford's SYNC system, which provides voice-command-based connectivity with phones and media players and can perform other actions such as reading texts. MyFord Touch is included in all Titanium models and brings a huge, colorful 8-inch touch-screen display, which can also be controlled through steering-wheel buttons. This system includes advanced voice control for climate control, entertainment and other vehicle functions, and can also turn the vehicle into a wireless hotspot with a USB-based cellular data modem. It's also packaged with an upgraded Sony sound system, as well as satellite radio and HD Radio with an iTunes tagging function. Other available features in the Focus include multi-color interior ambient lighting, push-button start and an Active Park Assist system that steers the car into a parking spot while the driver only modulates the brakes.

The Focus ST is far more aggressive than its siblings, save for the RS. Its standout feature is a turbocharged 2.0L engine producing 252 horsepower and 270 foot-pounds of torque. The ST's suspension has been strengthened and its unique 18-inch wheels help to greatly improve the handling of the car, while larger brakes help balance performance. The exterior is also differentiated from standard Focus models with a unique grill, body kit and rear wing, giving the Focus ST a much lower stance and more aggressive look. Available only as a hatchback and with pricing similar to the Titanium model, the Focus ST offers a bit less luxury but a lot more performance. Starting at just over $24,000, it is available at an excellent price point.

The Focus RS takes compact performance to a new level. In addition to the all-wheel drive and 350-horsepower engine, the RS also includes upgraded brakes, 19-inch wheels wearing Michelin Super Sport rubber, a driver-controllable ride control suspension, HID headlamps, a 10-speaker Sony audio system, additional gauges displaying oil pressure, and boost pressure. Outside, The RS distinguishes itself with an under-bumper intercooler, a rear wing spoiler and a dramatic lowered stance.

A fully electric-powered Focus hatch is available in certain regions. It features a 107kW electric motor with a liquid-cooled lithium ion battery good for 143 horsepower and 184 lb-feet of torque. The electric Focus does not skimp on comfort. It includes power windows and locks, remote keyless entry, proximity entry, dual-zone climate control, heated seats and Ford SYNC. The EPA estimates its range at 76 miles and a 240V fast charger can charge the battery in less than 4 hours.

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Editors' First Take

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The Ford Focus has been on sale since the 2011 model year and is no longer a class-leader in many respects, yet its multiple versions and many tech options continue to make the Focus an interesting choice in the compact-car class. There are no changes for the 2018 model year. From affordable sedans to the raging RS hot-hatchback, every buyer will be able to find a version of the Focus that suits their needs or wants.

Click here to read our most recent Ford Focus review.

Powertrain and specs

Ford offers four engines in the Focus ranging from mild to wild. Most versions of the car use a 2.0-liter I4 rated for 160 horsepower and 146 pound-feet of torque, with either a 5-speed manual or 6-speed dual-clutch transmission. This engine returns 25 miles per gallon city and 34 mpg highway with the manual, while dual-clutch models get either 24/34 mpg or 26/36 mpg, depending on configuration. Buyers can also pick a turbocharged 1.0-liter three-cylinder (standard on the SE sedan) that delivers less power, 123 hp and 125 pound-feet, but greater fuel economy: 30/40 mpg with its 6-speed manual transmission or 27/38 mpg with its 6-speed dual-clutch.

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