Ford Focus 2.3 EcoBoost ST 5dr with Launch Control, Heated Seats and Reverse Camera Hatchback (2020) at Ford Canterbury

01227 235 242

£28,200

WAS £29,500, SAVE £1,300

Never lose your way again with the inbuilt Sat Nav, plus this Focus is fitted with Keyless Entry / Start, Front Heated Seats, Heated Steering Wheel, Adaptive Cruise Control, Automatic Headlights, Rain Sensing Wipers, Front and Rear Parking Sensors with Rear Camera, Bang and Olufsen Sound System, Power Folding Door Mirrors, Ford SYNC3 Bluetooth, One-Touch Electric Windows, a Heated Windscreen and a DAB Radio with USB in. Qualifies for Warranty4Life*

02/03/2020

11780

Manual

Petrol 34.9 combined MPG (WLTP)

Shadow Black

New Lower Price


We pride ourselves in only providing vehicles of the highest of standards - all vehicles are taken through a pre-delivery inspection and are fully HPI checked for your peace of mind. We price our vehicles for sale on the basis of age, condition and mileage. The vehicles for sale may have previously been used for business or hire purposes and so may have had multiple users. Where we hold documents relating to vehicle history, these are available for inspection on request and we are happy to address any specific queries before you view or make an offer to purchase any vehicle.


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Chris Manahan
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Manager's Comment

Our Focus ST is packed with kit including a heated steering wheel and reverse camera

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Emissions and Fuel

CO2:
179 g/km

MPG:
35.8

WLTP CO2:
185 g/km

WLTP MPG:
34.9

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* Price does not include road fund license

V5 Document

V5 Document

MOT Certificate

MOT Certificate

Keys

Keys

Manuals

Manuals

Service Log Book

Service Log Book

Body Glass

Automatic rain sensing wipers, Electrically operated front and rear windows with one touch opening and closing, Front variable intermittent wipers with electric wash, Heated rear window, Quickclear heated windscreen, Rear privacy glass, Tailgate wash/wipe

Brakes

ABS+Electronic Brake force Distribution, Auto hold function, Electronic parking brake, Electronic stability control, Hill start assist, Post collision braking, Pre collision assist with autonomous emergency braking and pedestrian/cyclist detection, Red brake calipers

Communication

Bluetooth system, E-call

Driver Aids

Eco mode, Front and rear parking sensors, Intelligent speed assist, Lane keeping system - lane keeping alert and lane keeping aid, PAS, Rear view camera, Selectable drive mode

Driver Convenience

Easy fuel capless refuelling system

Driver Information

12.3" Digital instrument cluster, Digital clock, Ford SYNC 3 navigation with 8" TFT touchscreen, and app link Android auto/Apple carplay, Head up Display, Trip computer

Driving Mirrors

Auto dimming rear view mirror, Body coloured electrically operated and heated door mirrors with side indicators, Power folding door mirrors with puddle lights

Entertainment

2 USB ports, Aux input, B&O Premium audio system with 360 degree sound, 10 speakers, 675 Watts amplifier power & digital sound processor

Exterior Body Features

Body coloured bumpers, Body coloured door handles, Performance rear spoiler, Polished twin tailpipe, Rear bumper extension, Rear side wing doors, Scuff plates front,polished stainless steel with etched ST logo, ST upper and lower grille with full body styling kit and front and rear ST badge, Unique door and instrument panel inserts

Exterior Lights

Adaptive full LED headlamps with dynamic LED headlights, LED turn indicators, glare-free high beam, LED rear tail lamps and LED front fog lights, Auto headlamps (on/off), LED daytime running lamp

Heating/Cooling/Ventilation

Dual zone electronic air temperature control

Interior Features

3 spoke flat bottomed Sensico steering wheel with red stitching, Aluminium gear knob, Dark headliner, Heating for Sensico steering wheel, Load through ski hatch, Reach + rake adjustable steering column, Recaro part leather upholstery, Soft console knee pads with red stitching

Packs

Driver assistance pack with Adaptive Cruise Control - Focus

Safety

3x3 point rear seatbelts, Driver airbag, Front and rear seatbelt reminder, Front inertia reel height adjustable seatbelts with pre-tensioners, Front passenger airbag, Front side airbags, Passenger airbag deactivate switch, Remote/power child rear door locks, Side curtain airbags, Three rear inertia reel lap/diagonal seatbelts, Tyre pressure monitoring system

Seats

3 seat bench in 2nd row, 6 way power adjustable driver seat, Driver's lumbar support, Front passenger seat manual height and lumbar adjust, Heated driver and front passenger seats, Height adjustable front headrests, Isofix child seat preparation, Rear centre headrest, Single front passenger seat

Security

Ford keyfree system with Keyless entry and keyless start/sleep mode key fob, MyKey system, Remote central locking & engine immobiliser, Thatcham category 1 alarm

Transmission

Electronic limited slip differential

Wheels - Alloy

19" 5x2 spoke alloy wheel with magnetite finish

Wheels - Spare

Mini steel spare wheel

General

Badge Engine CC: 2.3
Badge Power: 280
Based On ID: N
Coin Description: EcoBoost
Coin Series: ST
Generation Mark: 4
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 34E
Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 12
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 1
NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: 96
NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: 87
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: 5
NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: 72
NCAP Safety Assist %: 75
Service Interval Frequency - Months: 12
Service Interval Mileage: 12500
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 60000
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
Timing Belt Interval Frequency - Months: 120
Timing Belt Interval Mileage: 150000
Vehicle Homologation Class: M1

Emissions - ICE

CO2 (g/km): 179
HC+NOx: N
Particles: N
Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb: 185
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEH: 186
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - TEL: 185

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft: DOHC
Catalytic Convertor: True
CC: 2300
Fuel Delivery: TURBO DIRECT INJECTION
Gears: 6 SPEED
Transmission: MANUAL

Fuel Consumption - ICE

EC Combined (mpg): 35.8
EC Extra Urban (mpg): 45.6
EC Urban (mpg): 26.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb: 8.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEH: 8.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - TEL: 8.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High: 8
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High: 7.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low: 11.8
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium: 8
WLTP - MPG - Comb: 34.9
WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEH: 34.9
WLTP - MPG - Comb - TEL: 34.9
WLTP - MPG - Extra High: 35.3
WLTP - MPG - High: 39.8
WLTP - MPG - Low: 23.9
WLTP - MPG - Medium: 35.3

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs): 5.7
Engine Power - BHP: 280
Engine Power - KW: 206
Engine Power - PS: True
Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 310
Engine Torque - MKG: 42.8
Engine Torque - NM: 420
Top Speed: 155

Test Cycles

Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP
RDE Certification Level: RDE 2

Tyres

Alloys?: True
Space Saver?: True
Tyre Size Front: 235/35 R19
Tyre Size Rear: 235/35 R19
Tyre Size Spare: SPACE SAVER
Wheel Style: 5x2 SPOKE
Wheel Type: 19" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Length: 4378
Wheelbase: 2700
Width: 1825
Width (including mirrors): 1979

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 52
Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 1250
Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 273
Max. Roof Load: 75
Minimum Kerbweight: 1508
No. of Seats: 5
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 10.7

FOCUS GROUP (used) 21/10/2021

By Jonathan Crouch

Introduction

The fourth generation 'C519'-series Ford Focus launched in 2018 put its maker right back into contention in the family hatchback segment, with smarter looks, much improved interior quality and extra technology. There was also greater efficiency beneath the bonnet from a completely rejuvenated range of engines and what Ford claimed to be class-leading levels of safety. The best part though, was that this car still remained as rewarding to drive as it had always been. The Focus might have grown up in this form, but it certainly didn't lose its spark. Here, we look at the early 2018-2021-era models.

Models

[petrol] 1.0, 1.5 & 2.3 EcoBoost / [diesel] 1.5 & 2.0 EcoBlue

History

It's very difficult to over-state the importance of the Focus family hatch to Ford's European business. By the time of the launch of this 'C519'-series MK4 design in 2018, it had been on sale for over two decades with 16 million global sales. For our part of the world, it had proved to be the company's most important market offering since the Model T. To understand this fourth generation version's significance, we'll need to press the rewind button for a moment and shuttle back to 1997. Ford's family hatch contender during this period was the fifth generation Escort, a car so all-encompassingly woeful that the brand was almost embarrassed to sell it. When the time came for a replacement, everyone expected something better. But what we got in the Focus model first launched in 1998 was something much, much more than that, a contender that, at a stroke, offered arguably the biggest step forward in family car design the market had ever seen. Here at last was technology directed firmly at the man in the street who, in this apparently humble family hatchback, could experience a car more entertaining and rewarding to drive than almost anything this side of a sizeable lottery win. It was asking a lot for the MK2 model we saw in 2005 to repeat such a seismic step forward but that second generation Focus was still quite good enough to remain acclaimed as the driver's choice against rival Astras and Golfs that made up for their dynamic failings with a better ride and a more luxurious big car feel. These were attributes the Focus needed too and when it came to developing the MK3 version, first launched early in 2011, then updated in 2015, Ford tried to provide them without compromising the car's class-leading handling. That was also the goal with this more sophisticated MK4 model, announced in the Spring of 2018. It was about the same size as before and though the lighter, stronger bodywork didn't look too different, it clothed an all-new C2 platform that enabled a longer wheelbase that for the first time allowed this car to offer properly class-competitive rear seat room and luggage space. Much had changed beneath the bonnet too, with clever cylinder deactivation for the petrol models and the all-new 1.5-litre three cylinder petrol unit we'd first seen in the Fiesta ST. The diesel engines were new too. So was the much higher quality cabin which featured half the number of previous buttons. On top of all that, the brand claimed class-leading camera-driven safety standards too. This car did, in short, promise the kind of significant step forward that was absolutely necessary for Ford if the brand was to retain its place amongst the sales leaders in this segment. This MK4 Focus was updated with a mild hybrid version of the 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol unit in 2020; then fully facelifted at the end of 2021. It's the pre-facelift 2018-2021-era models we look at here.

What You Get

Here's a car that in this MK4 form certainly grew up - matured - in almost every way. You might, like us, wish that Ford had been a touch more adventurous about this fourth generation Focus model's design, but you can see at a glance that it better meets the key criteria for the kind of car a family hatchback should be. The wheels are further apart, the glass area's larger, the overhangs shorter, all of this part of the brand's 'human-centric' design philosophy. To some extent, that works. Put this 'C519'-series Focus next to its pre-2018 'C346'-series predecessor and it certainly looks a more expensive proposition. There was also an estate model as an alternative to the usual five-door hatch. Inside, Ford hoped buyers would find the ambiance of this fourth generation model much more inviting. To that end, the dashboard was pulled forward and there was a slimmer, lower centre console, plus the new body shell freed up more room for shoulders and knees. As a result, you no longer feel quite so hemmed-in at the wheel, but by the same token, there's also slightly less of the cockpit-style positioning that we rather liked before. You can't fault the cleaner, sharper ergonomics though, aided by a massive 50% reduction in button clutter, with as many functions as possible relocated to the cabin's prominent SYNC 3 infotainment screen that, in keeping with current automotive fashion, sprouts from the top of the dash. All of which is interesting - but perhaps not quite so fundamentally significant as the changes which took place further back in this fourth generation model. The space on offer here certainly doesn't redefine what the family hatchback segment can offer, but at the launch of this MK4 model, it did at least begin to typify it. In a Focus, back seat folk were with this fourth generation design treated much as they would be in a rival Golf, thanks to 56mm more knee clearance, 78mm more legroom and 60mm more shoulder room. The boot also upgraded itself to meet the class standard in 2018, offering 341-litres of capacity if you load to window level - or 375-litres with a tyre repair kit fitted. A typically-specified estate model fitted with a mini-spare offers up to 575-litres. Fold down the 60:40-split rear backrest and between 1,250 and 1,320-litres of space can be freed up in the hatch model, depending on the size of spare wheel the car in question uses. An estate fitted with a mini-spare will give you up to 1,620-litres.

What You Pay

We'll quote pricing based on a Focus hatch; the Estate version values at around £500 more. Prices start at around £11,800, which gets you the 1.0-litre 84PS petrol model in base 'Style' trim, with values rising to around £16,100 for one of the last pre-facelift '21-plate cars. You'll probably want the perkier 1.0 EcoBoost petrol turbo engine though, which values in the £12,300-£17,000 bracket for base-trimmed 100 and 125PS 'Zetec'-trimmed models sold between 2018-2021. The 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol unit starts at around £14.000 ('18-plate 'Active' trim), with values rising to around £18,600 for a later '20-plate car. For the 1.5 EcoBlue diesel version, prices with 'Active' trim start at around £14,300, rising to around £17,800 for a later '20-plate car. For the 2.0 EcoBlue diesel auto, you're looking at a starting price of around £14,000 for a 'Titanium'-spec model, with values rising to around £18,500 for a later '20-plate car. Finally, the top 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol ST hot hatch model prices from around £21,700 on a '19-plate, with values rising to around £24,700 for one of the last '21-plate pre-facelift cars. All quoted values are sourced through industry experts cap hpi. Click here for a free valuation.

What to Look For

As usual with a family hatch, check the interior for child damage. And with top-spec versions, check the alloy wheels for scratches. Look for any dents, dings and scratches to the panelwork - 'base 'Style' and 'Zetec' models didn't get parking sensors, so may be more susceptible here. And ensure that the clutch engages smoothly and that the car goes into gear easily. The 1.5-litre diesel engine is fitted with a diesel particulate filter, but this may be clogged up if the previous owner hasn't completed too many highway journeys. There were a few recalls that should have been applied to any early MK4 Focus models you might be looking at. On some cars built towards the end of 2018, the brake pedal hinge may not be to specification. And some owners of early 1.0-litre and 1.5-litre petrol models were getting a warning message for the particulate filter incorrectly stating it to be full; this required a dealer trip to reprogram the system. Some cars built between April and August 2018 had issues with the rear child locks; there were some front suspension bolt issues on cars made between September and November 2018; there were some wiring loom recall issues between March 2018 and March 2020; an issue with the power distribution box on some cars made in October 2019; and some seat belt anchorage issues on cars made between May and September 2019. Insist on a fully stamped-up service history and you'll know that all of these recall issues have been attended to.

Replacement Parts

(approx based on a 2020 Focus 1.0 EcoBoost - Ex Vat) An oil filter is in the £15 bracket. An air filter costs around £22. A pollen filter costs around £13. A rear brake disc costs in the £150 bracket. A front brake pad set is in the £35-£59 bracket; rears in the £28-£50 bracket. A front brake disc is in the £103-£151 bracket; a rear disc around £118.

On the Road

This fourth generation Focus, like its predecessors, has a reputation as a family hatchback with the ability to entertain at the wheel - and if you enjoy your driving, that's something you'll appreciate pretty early on the first time you try one. Twenty years ago, the original version of this model achieved much the same thing by standardising advanced multi-link rear suspension across its model line-up. With this MK4 model, you only get that on the most powerful 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol and 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel variants. If, on the other hand, you go for the 1.5-litre EcoBlue diesel or, more likely, the 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine, then the damping's a little different. These volume models come with a much less sophisticated torsion beam arrangement, though Ford embellished it with the clever 'force vectoring' rear axle springs that it first developed for its Fiesta ST hot hatch. As a result, the ride isn't overly firm, but body control through the bends is still exemplary, allowing you at the wheel to make the most of the stiff C2 platform, the feelsome power steering and the torque vectoring control system that helps you get the power down through the bends. It all combines to create a car that really can still reward at the wheel, even in its most affordable forms: there's still nothing else in the segment from this period that feels quite the same. Yet it still does the sensible stuff well too, being decently refined, with confident braking and a lovely tactile gearshift. Efficiency's up to scratch, even if you select one of the mainstream petrol engines, all of which are three cylinders in size. Most tend to go for the 1.0-litre unit, offered with either 85, 100 or 125PS. The latter option manages 58.9mpg on the combined cycle and 108g/km of CO2 (both NEDC figures). That's providing you select the most frugal of the three provided standard driving modes - 'Eco'. 'Normal' and 'Sport' settings are also available. The quicker powerplants were available with the option of Ford's 8-speed auto gearbox, which adapts to your driving style.

Overall

Has any car had more of an impact on modern era motoring than the Ford Focus? Other family hatchbacks from this era can better the fourth generation version of this car in some regards, but they still can't make their family hatchback contenders drive like a Focus. It's true that there are some caveats in that regard. The lower-powered models with their more basic torsion beam suspension set-up don't have quite as fluid a feel as those further up the range that feature the 'control blade' multi-link rear damping system. Even in its most basic form though, this Focus remains an entertainer at heart, a car you'll feel at one with thanks to its progressive body control and steering precision. As a result, it's still a default pick amongst family hatchbacks from the 2018-2021 period if you like your driving. But not everyone does. Many family hatchback folk are buying a car of this kind simply because it ticks the right boxes for safety, practicality and running costs and we've a suspicion that it's these people who'll have their perceptions most changed by this much improved MK4 model. They may, like us, wonder why it couldn't have been just a touch more visually interesting. And wish for a slightly more classy cabin. But they'll certainly like the responsively frugal new-generation engines, the higher safety standards, the improved quality and the fact that at long last in a Focus, there's decent rear passenger and luggage space. In short, if you can afford the asking prices, you'll find that here's a family hatchback that in this form has its priorities right, a car that grew up on MK4 form, but one that in this guise still knew how to enjoy itself. Smarter and more sensible, it was, more than ever, number one for a reason.

QUALITY ST (new2) 09/08/2019

Ford's Focus ST hot hatch is back, with a mission. Jonathan Crouch takes a look at the revised version.

Ten Second Review

The improved version of Ford's fourth generation Focus ST is now smarter - and more sophisticated inside. In hatch or estate guise, with manual or paddleshift automatic transmission, it's a car that's easy to get the most from. And a machine you can enjoy to the full on your favourite road without afterwards having to pay for it with the kind of over-firm ride you simply don't want in everyday traffic. Ultimately, so many quick cars can feel.... well, rather irrelevant. Here's one that's anything but....

Background

'ST' is a badge that, when it comes to Ford, stands for 'quick but not concussive', a performance level that sits just above the company's fast-but-family-friendly 'ST-Line' models. A badge applied to the kind of car a red-blooded racer could afford, enjoy and use every day. A car like this - the improved version of the fourth generation Focus ST. The Focus ST is the kind of car that's always democratised performance, giving you something of the speed of a supercar within the body - and the budget - of something much more ordinary. Other brands promise this kind of thing but in reality, often do little more than bolt a set of spoilers and a turbo onto something more mundane. Ford though, has a different approach, the Blue Oval brand boasting a long history of developing proper performance versions of its mainstream models, designed by enthusiasts to be driven by enthusiasts. That's certainly seems to be what's been delivered with this improved MK4 Focus ST. Let's take a look.

Driving Experience

Ford now only offers one engine to Focus ST customers, but it's the one you probably wanted anyway, the 280PS 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol unit. The 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel option has been dropped. Buyers choose between a 6-speed manual gearbox or a quick-shifting 7-speed auto transmission with steering wheel paddleshifters. Selectable Drive Mode technology enables drivers to adjust the car's character to suit the kind of drive experience they want. The various settings tweak steering feel, throttle response and stability control thresholds - plus suspension response too, courtesy of the 'CCD' 'Continuously Controlled Damping' system that further improves the sophisticated 'SLA' multi-link suspension set-up. CCD monitors steering, braking, suspension and body inputs 500 times a second to adjust damping responses to deliver optimal ride comfort and cornering control. You also get an 'e-LSD' Electronic Limited Slip Differential. The system uses hydraulically activated clutches to limit the engine torque delivered to a wheel that has reduced traction on the road surface, and redistributes up to 100 per cent of available torque to the wheel with more traction to counteract wheel spin that can hamper acceleration through, and out of, corners. You'll want to know how fast it is; well, plenty quick enough. This car offers 420Nm of torque and uses the most free-revving Focus ST engine ever, sprinting to 62mph in less than six seconds.

Design and Build

After a third generation Focus ST that didn't really look dynamic enough, Ford styled the original version of this fourth generation model to have a bit more pavement presence - and that evolution continues with this facelifted design, available as before in hatch and estate forms. It features a bold exterior design with details that include honeycomb upper and lower front grilles, large side vents, side skirts and aerodynamically-optimised spoilers on the lower fascia and rear roof. A smarter design of 18-inch alloy wheel is standard, with optional 19-inch wheels also available. As with other models in the revised Focus range, this updated ST has smarter LED headlamps with built-in foglights. plus the brand badge has been moved from the bonnet to the front grille. And the darker rear tail lamps have a smarter 'loop light' illuminating signature. Inside, the big (and rather disappointing) new is that Ford no longer offers grippy Recaro front seats to ST customers. The brand reckons that the replacement 'Performance seats' are better - you be the judge. These seats have been given the seal of approval from the leading spinal health organisation Aktion Gesunder R??cken e.V. (AGR) (the Campaign for Healthier Backs). Fourteen-way power seat adjustment, including four-way adjustable lumbar support, helps drivers reach their ideal driving position, while standard seat heating contributes to high levels of comfort. As with other upper-spec Focus, the improved cabin now features a larger 13.2-inch 'SYNC 4' central touchscreen. In a controversial move, Ford has decided that this monitor should now incorporate the ventilation controls, giving the dashboard a cleaner, less cluttered look. Luggage space still isn't particularly noteworthy either; there's 341-litres of capacity if you load to window level - or 375-litres with a tyre repair kit fitted. A typically-specified Estate model fitted with a mini-spare offers up to 575-litres.

Market and Model

Focus ST pricing starts at around £30,000, so it's no longer the bargain it once was, though Ford points out that this is explained to some extent by the fact that stripped-out entry-level trim packages are no longer offered. There's just a single spec this time round, though you do get the choice of either five-door hatch or Estate body styles, the latter requiring an £1,100 premium. Either way, there's the choice of either a 190PS 2.0-litre EcoBlue diesel engine or, for around £2,500 more, the 280PS 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol unit that most will want. If you think that premium sounds quite high, bear in mind that it gets you not only a more powerful engine but also adaptive 'CCD' damping and an 'e-LSD' Electronic Limited Slip Differential. All variants come well equipped with 19-inch 5x2-spoke alloy wheels, Adaptive LED headlamps, LED tail lights and a full body kit including a large rear spoiler, plus there's unique ST Sport suspension. Inside, you'll find part-leather Recaro seats, a 675-watt 10-speaker B&O audio system, alloy pedals, polished stainless steel scuff plates, a heated steering wheel, keyless entry and adaptive cruise control.

Cost of Ownership

The EcoBoost powerplant uses a low-inertia twin-scroll turbocharger, which scavenges exhaust gas energy more effectively using separated channels to minimise interference between gas pulses. An electronically actuated waste-gate allows closer control of boost pressures for optimised engine performance. In addition, a unique exhaust system that reduces back pressure, bespoke air intake system and optimised intercooler further improve breathing. Let's get to the figures; up to 35.3mpg on the combined cycle and up to 183g/km of CO2 (it's 35.8mpg and 182g/km for the auto). What else? Well we'll tell you about servicing. Two pre-paid servicing plans are available and maintenance bookings can be done online through the 'My Ford' portal. This is part of the 'Ford BlueService' scheme that wraps up all of the care and maintenance of your car into one bundle that includes a free 30-point 'eCheck' of vital parts and highlights any work required with a red, amber and green traffic light warning to rank items that need attention in order of importance.

Summary

Ford hasn't set out to make the fastest hot hatch in the Golf GTI segment here. Or the most wild-looking. Or the most track-ready. If, in buying a car of this kind, your over-riding priorities lie in any of these three areas, there are other rivals we'd point you towards. But if what you'd really like is a car that can combine all those virtues in one very complete package, we'd absolutely direct you to include a Focus ST high up on your wish list. There's a difference between a mere hot hatch and a properly developed performance car and if you want to know exactly what that is, we'd recommend that you try this Focus, then go and drive one of its rivals. Some may be faster. Others may feel more up-market. But few, if any, are so enjoyable to drive quickly. This Focus ST is arguably the very definition of what a car of this kind should be, a guilt-free fast hatch with near-supercar performance and technology that's relatively affordable and perfectly practical. You get a class-leading ride and handling balance, plus estate versatility if you want it. All in a car that deserves to be remembered fondly in a fine tradition of fast Fords.

SHARPER FOCUS (new2) 01/06/2018

Ford has significantly improved the fourth generation version of its Focus. With smarter looks and extra technology, it'll still give its rivals plenty to think about, thinks Jonathan Crouch.

Ten Second Review

The Ford Focus has evolved, this improved version of the MK4 model offering slicker looks, a much improved 'SYNC 4' infotainment system and extra technology. There's also impressive efficiency beneath the bonnet thanks to the hi-tech range of engines. The best part though, is that this car should still remain as rewarding to drive as it's always been. The Focus might have grown up but it certainly hasn't lost its spark.

Background

It's very difficult to over-state the importance of the Focus family hatch to Ford's European business. To understand its significance, press the rewind button for a moment and shuttle back to 1997. Ford's family hatch contender during this period was the fifth generation Escort, a car so all-encompassingly woeful that the brand was almost embarrassed to sell it. When the time came for a replacement, we all expected something better. What we got in the Focus model first launched in 1998 was something much, much more than that, a car that, at a stroke, offered arguably the biggest step forward in family car design the market has ever seen. Here at last was technology directed firmly at the man in the street who, in this apparently humble family hatchback, could experience a car more entertaining and rewarding to drive than almost anything this side of a sizeable lottery win. It was asking a lot for the MK2 model we saw in 2005 to repeat such a seismic step forward but that second generation Focus was still quite good enough to remain acclaimed as the driver's choice against rival Astras and Golfs that made up for their dynamic failings with a better ride and a more luxurious big car feel. These were attributes the Focus also needed and when it came to developing the MK3 version, launched early in 2011, Ford tried to provide them without compromising the car's class-leading handling. That's also been the goal with this more sophisticated MK4 model, announced in the Spring of 2018, then updated three years on to create the car we're going to look at here.

Driving Experience

There's one thing you always know about a Focus: which is that'll usually be a great steer. And of course nothing's changed in that regard with this updated model. As before, the ride isn't overly firm, but body control through the bends is still exemplary, allowing you at the wheel to make the most of the stiff C2 platform, the feelsome power steering and the torque vectoring control system that helps you get the power down through the bends. It all combines to create a car that really can still reward at the wheel, even in its most affordable forms: there's still nothing else in this segment that feels quite the same. Yet it still does the sensible stuff well too, being decently refined, with confident braking and a lovely tactile gearshift. The engine range was significantly updated as recently as 2020 with Ford's latest Mild Hybrid technology and of course that's carried forward, though the line-up kicks off with a conventional version of the brand's 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine in 125PS form with a manual gearbox. You can have the same engine in mHEV mild hybrid form, though only if you're prepared to specify Ford's 7-speed PowerShift auto gearbox. The 155PS version of this mHEV mild hybrid 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine can be had with either manual or PowerShift auto transmission. Higher mileage drivers will be pleased to see that the 1.5-litre 120PS EcoBlue diesel engine's been retained in the range - though only with 8-speed auto transmission. And at the top of the line-up, the ST hot hatch continues on with the 280PS 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol unit, offered with either manual or 7-speed auto transmission. One change we'd like to have seen relates to suspension. A little disappointingly, Ford continues to equip the lower-powered 1.0-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel Hatch variants that most customers choose with a cruder twist-beam damping set-up. If you want the more sophisticated independent rear double wishbone suspension system that improves ride comfort, you'll need an estate, the 'Active' crossover version or a more powerful hatch variant. The top 'ST' high performance version for instance, which gets stiffer, lowered suspension.

Design and Build

Both hatch and estate versions of this improved Focus are marked out by smarter LED headlamps with built-in foglights. plus the brand badge has been moved from the bonnet to the front grille. And the darker rear tail lamps have a smarter 'loop light' illuminating signature. As before, there are separate styling details to mark out the different trim levels, with varying front grille designs for 'Titanium', 'ST-Line', 'Active' and 'ST' versions. The 'Active' model, as before, gets SUV-style visual changes, including extra lower body cladding, larger side vents and a higher ride height. Bigger changes are reserved for the cabin, which now in most models features a larger 13.2-inch 'SYNC 4' central touchscreen. In a controversial move, Ford has decided that this monitor should now incorporate the ventilation controls, giving the dashboard a cleaner, less cluttered look. We're not sure that this is actually a step forward but the infotainment system's ability to now accept over-the-air updates certainly is; as a result, you'll get into your Focus one morning and find it able to do something it couldn't do the day before - which is rather cool. As before, rear seat space isn't exemplary, but there's decent room for a couple of adults. Luggage space still isn't particularly noteworthy either; there's 341-litres of capacity if you load to window level - or 375-litres with a tyre repair kit fitted. A typically-specified Estate model fitted with a mini-spare offers up to 575-litres. Fold down the 60:40-split rear backrest and between 1,250 and 1,320-litres of space can be freed up in the hatch model, depending on the size of spare wheel you decide upon. An Estate version will give you up to 1,653-litres. The Estate's load area also now features a wet zone, with a load-floor liner inserted into the space to provide water resistance against items such as wet suits and umbrellas.

Market and Model

Pricing hasn't changed much, kicking off from around £22,500 and running up to around £37,000 for the top ST model. The estate body style attracts a premium of £1,200 over the equivalent hatch. The Focus range kicks off with the base 'Trend' variant, before progressing through 'Titanium' and 'ST-Line' variants, both of which are also available in plusher 'Vignale' forms. An SUV-style 'Active' version (also with a 'Vignale' variant) and an 'ST' performance variant are also available. Equipment levels reflect the fact that most customers will be paying upwards of £25,000 for this once very affordable compact family hatch. Even the base Focus 'Trend' comes as standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, full-LED headlamps, navigation, drive modes and air conditioning. Avoid base trim and you get Ford's latest 13.2-inch 'SYNC 4' touchscreen incorporating navigation, 'Apple CarPlay'/'Android Auto' smartphone-mirroring, a DAB digital radio with Bluetooth and Emergency Assist. Plus there's an electronic parking brake, autonomous emergency braking, tyre pressure monitoring, Hill Start Assist and a Lane-Keeping Aid. For sporty drivers, the 'ST-Line' variant offers unique body styling, including unique upper and lower grille, rear spoiler and polished twin tailpipes. Inside there's a flat-bottomed steering wheel, black headlining, an aluminium gear knob, alloy finish pedals and red stitching. New safety systems added across the range include 'Blind Spot assist', 'Intersection assist' and 'Local Hazard Information' (which can warn drivers of hazardous situations on the road ahead). Plus there's 'Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go', 'Speed Sign Recognition' and 'Lane Centring' (which helps to ease the strain of driving in stop-start traffic). 'Pre-Collision Assist with Active Braking' helps drivers avoid or mitigate the effects of collisions with vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists, while 'Active Park Assist' operates gear selection, acceleration and braking to enable fully automated parking manoeuvres simply by holding down a button.

Cost of Ownership

Ford has re-fettled its engines in recent times pursuit of greater efficiency. The biggest change has been the introduction, back in 2020, of 48-volt mHEV mild hybrid technology for the brand's core 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol unit. The mHEV system uses a beefed-up starter/generator driven by a belt at the front of the engine that stores the energy harvested when you brake or decelerate in a tiny 48-volt lithium-ion battery secreted at the back of the car. Let's get to the figures, which we'll quote using WLTP measurement for fuel and WLTP measurement for CO2. Bear in mind with all the engines that if you choose the optional 8-speed auto gearbox, you'll hit your efficiency readings by around 10% - which isn't the case if you go for a Volkswagen Group model with DSG auto transmission. The latest version of the 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol unit that most choose gets increased injection pressure to facilitate efficiency. In mHEV mild hybrid form, this unit gets a lower compression ratio and a larger turbo. And the mHEV version has been embellished by a beefed-up starter/generator driven by a belt at the front of the engine that stores the energy harvested when you brake or decelerate in a tiny 48-volt lithium-ion battery secreted at the back of the car. That 1.0 EcoBoost petrol unit comes in two forms with 125PS (standard as a manual and mHEV as a PowerShift auto), both of which return up to 52.3mpg on the combined cycle with a CO2 reading of 121g/km. For the 155PS manual version of this 1.0-litre mHEV engine, the figures are up to 54.3mpg and up to 116g/km of CO2 (it's 53.3mpg and up to 119g/km of CO2 for the auto version). What about the diesel? Well, for the 1.5 EcoBlue unit with 120PS and auto transmission (the only spec on offer), you're looking at up to 61.4mpg on the combined cycle and up to 120g/km of CO2. For completion, we'll also give you the figures for the ST 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol variant - up to 35.3mpg and up to 183g/km (35.8mpg and 182g/km for the auto). As before, this Focus features selectable Drive Mode technology, enabling drivers to choose an 'Eco' mode for extra efficiency, this setting, like the alternative 'Normal' and 'Sport' modes, adjusting the responses of the throttle pedal, the steering and (if fitted) the auto gearbox. A standard 'Active Grille Shutter' closes a flap in the front gill to reduce drag at speed. Plus there's clever 'Air Curtain' technology that guides airflow across the front wheels in a way that reduces turbulence. As for the warranty, well like all Fords, this one comes with a 36-month 60,000-mile package that also includes one year of Europe-wide breakdown assistance. On top of that, there's an anti-corrosion guarantee for 12 years. Ford also offers the chance to extend this cover - to either four years and 80,000 miles or five years and 100,000 miles.

Summary

Has any car had more of an impact on modern era motoring than the Ford Focus? Other manufacturers can better this car in some regards, but they still can't make their family hatchback contenders drive like a Focus. It's true that there are some caveats in that regard. The lower-powered models with their more basic torsion beam suspension set-up don't have quite as fluid a feel as those further up the range that feature the 'control blade' multi-link rear damping system. Even in its most basic form though, this Focus remains an entertainer at heart, a car you'll feel at one with thanks to its progressive body control and steering precision. As a result, it's still a default pick amongst family hatchbacks if you like your driving. But not everyone does. Many family hatchback folk are buying a car of this kind simply because it ticks the right boxes for safety, practicality and running costs and I've a suspicion that it's these people who'll have their perceptions most changed by this much improved version of the MK4 model. They may, like us, wonder why it couldn't have been just a touch more visually interesting. And wish for a slightly more classy cabin. But they'll certainly like the responsively frugal new-generation engines, the higher safety standards and the much improved 'SYNC 4' infotainment system. In short, if you can afford the asking prices, you'll find that here's a family hatchback that now has its priorities right, a car that's grown up, but one that still knows how to enjoy itself. Smarter and more sensible, it is, more than ever, number one for a reason.

FOCUS ON QUALITY (family) 15/10/2021

June Neary tries out the latest version of Britain's best seller, Ford's Focus

Introduction

The Ford Focus has always been regarded as a sensible set of wheels, with the added bonus of being rather good to drive. You'd certainly know that Ford's current MK4 Focus is, well, a Focus. The styling is familiar and this is a car that I've always liked. This latest evolution has sharpened the whole package visually. Ford says the design makes the car look as if it's moving, even when it's standing still. Judge for yourself, but I think it's clear that while this is a volume product, it's far from bland and an even more interesting car to look than the previous model. As before, there's a body style choice between the five-door hatchback models and a smart estate. In all, it's a package that has the looks and the features to suit me.

Will It Suit Me?

I remember the original Focus as suiting drivers of all sizes with wider opening doors and more headroom than the class norm. The latest model expands on this theme, offering an optional electrically adjustable pedal set. The multi-adjustable steering column helps in ensuring a comfortable driving position and Ford have integrated a number of practical aspects from the C-MAX mini-MPV including a glove box big enough to house a 1.5-litre bottle, a sunglasses holder, a dash-top cubby and class-leading luggage space.

Practicalities

The elephant in the room when it comes to the Focus is always its bootspace. You get around 341-litres, which is better than used to be the case with a Focus but is still significantly less than some competitors. Fortunately, most potential owners don't seem to mind and I certainly had no issues during the families duties undertaken in my time with the car. Buggies, shopping and one expensive IKEA trip all were dealt with in untroubled fashion. For the flat-pack stuff, I had to fold the rear bench, which freed up a 1,320-litre space. For passengers, the curved rear roofline suggests that headroom might be a little compromised in the rear where you sit high-ishly positioned for a good view of the road ahead. In fact though, the extra length and a longer wheelbase of this design have enabled the designers to pull a rabbit out of the hat and create perfectly acceptable levels of head and legroom, even for taller folk. Provided, of course, there are only two of them. As usual in this class of car, three large adults are going to need to be very friendly to share rear seat space together. When it comes to gadgets, I just can't get enough of them. After all, they really do increase the 'feel good factor' when you spend so much of your day behind the wheel. The plush variant I tested had features such as a heated windscreen, keyless start, hill start assist, a premium stereo, 17-inch alloys, active park assist and heated leather seats. Some of the options offered on the Focus are the sort of thing only seen on flagship super saloons not so long ago. The park assist system, which guides you into a parking space, is one and then there are five systems that use a set of inbuilt cameras. These comprise Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Aid, Driver Alert, Traffic Sign Recognition and Auto High Beam.

Behind the Wheel

Behind the wheel, the quality really is quite impressive and there's a driver-orientated positioning of seat and controls. The engine range initially looks familiar, but closer inspection reveals that it's been heavily revised. As before, the range primarily hinges around Ford's familiar three cylinder 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol unit, which gets a new turbocharger and cylinder head and is available in 100 and 125PS guises, plus it can also be had in mHEV mild hybrid form. There's also a new 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol engine with 150 or 182PS. Plus a fresh 1.5-litre EcoBlue diesel with 95 and 120PS. And a 2.0-litre EcoBlue unit with 150PS. As for the suspension, well a little disappointingly, Ford has followed Volkswagen's lead in equipping lower-powered 1.0-litre petrol and 1.5-litre diesel Hatch variants with a cruder twist-beam set-up. If you want the more sophisticated independent rear double wishbone suspension system that's supposed to improve ride comfort, you'll need an estate, the 'Active' crossover version, top-spec 'Vignale' trim or a hatch with 1.5-litre petrol or 2.0-litre diesel power. The top 'ST' high performance version gets stiffer, lowered suspension and a choice of either 280PS 2.3-litre EcoBoost petrol power or a 190PS version of the 2.0 EcoBlue diesel engine.

Value For Money

Prices start at around £21,000 with a trim line-up starting with 'Zetec', before progressing through 'ST-Line', 'ST-Line X', 'Titanium', 'Titanium X' and 'Vignale' variants. An SUV-style 'Active' version and an 'ST' hot hatch are also available. Equipment levels reflect the fact that most customers will be paying getting on for £25,000 for this once very affordable family hatch. Even the base Focus 'Zetec' comes as standard with 16-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, alomng with an 8-inch SYNC3 touchscreen incorporating a DAB digital radio with Bluetooth and Emergency Assist. Plus there's an electronic parking brake, autonomous emergency braking, tyre pressure monitoring, Hill Start Assist and a Lane-Keeping Aid. Whatever your budget, you'll find the Focus cheap to run: there are major components throughout the vehicle, which are designed to require minimal or even no maintenance.

Could I Live With One?

If I needed reminding just how good the Focus still is, this fourth generation model does just that. The smart styling is attractive and distinctive and the cabin now feels a more appealing place to be. There's no doubt the new Focus is brilliantly adapted to the cut and thrust of daily life.

Ford Focus average rating: 4.5/5 (96 reviews)

Mr J Norton - 13/04/20, owner of a Ford Focus

User rating: 4.5/5

User comment:
I really do enjoy my new Ford Focus, its really smooth as ride. Really comfortable and simply as it expect.

Mr L Linford-Smith - 24/04/20, owner of a Ford Focus St-Line X Tdci

User rating: 5/5

User comment:
Excellent. Can't fault it.

Mr D Birchall - 23/03/20, owner of a Ford Focus ST X

User rating: 5/5

User comment:
Very happy with my Focus ST line X. Lots of useful points. There are three driving modes, normal eco and s are beneficial. I haven't used s yet. Adaptive headlamps and cornering lamps should be particularly very good for safe driving at night, but I haven't used the car a night yet. The car is a pleasure to drive, or to be a passenger. I would certainly like another Focus ST line X when it comes time to change.

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