From £13,785
Great for out of town driving, but ride is compromised for economy

Our Verdict

Ford Focus 2011-2014
A big seller is the 113bhp 1.6-litre diesel in Zetec trim.

Can the Ford Focus capture the hearts and minds of hatchback buyers?

13 May 2008

What is it?

Ford has improved the car’s aerodynamics, adding side skirts and a rear spoiler and modifying the grille and front bumper. Lower suspension, narrower low-resistance tyres and almost-solid wheel trims complete the package. The engine is unchanged, but the transmission uses a low-viscosity oil.

What’s it like?

The car is very driveable B-road, A-road and motorways speeds, with five well-spaced ratios and plenty of mid-range torque. Things are less impressive around town, where the lack of low-end torque makes stop-start driving something of a trial.

Though perfectly acceptable over speed bumps, the Econetic’s ride over potholes and broken surfaces suffers as a result of its higher pressure tyres. It breaks away slightly earlier than its siblings, but on the whole lives up to the Focus’s excellent reputation for handling.

Economy is excellent for a five-seater – it averaged 49.6mpg over a 100-mile test run of mixed urban and rural driving.

Should I buy one?

The Focus Econetic is the ideal economical hatchback for out-of-town driving. At today’s fuel prices, the slight premium (£250) over the similarly equipped model should repay itself within a few months. Those with a lot of town driving to do might want to look elsewhere.

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Join the debate

Comments
3

14 May 2008

[quote Autocar]Ford has improved the car’s aerodynamics, adding side skirts and a rear spoiler and modifying the grille and front bumper. Lower suspension, narrower low-resistance tyres and almost-solid wheel trims complete the package. The engine is unchanged, but the transmission uses a low-viscosity oil.[/quote] I can't help wondering why most of this package isn't extended to the whole Focus range. Surely it would make sense to make the whole range more "efficient" even if not all as good as this particular model. It seems to me that a premium of £250 is just a bit of cynical money making by Ford; surely it would be better to encourage people to buy one of these by making them the same price as or even cheaper than the mainstream models.


Enjoying a Fabia VRs - affordable performance

14 May 2008

I can't really see the point in the ECOnetic Focus when the standard 1.6TDCI gets 62.8mpg and rides and handles better. Plus the ECOnetic doesn't look good (ok the Focus isn't the best looking car in the world, but the body kit on this one looks cheap, and the wheels are nasty). For company car tax drivers there is no benefit of the ECOnetic as the standard 1.6 falls into the 13% tax category. I would happily sacrifice a few mpg for better ride, handling and looks. Also avoid the 90bhp engine, when the 110bhp is much faster and just as economical.

14 May 2008

Do they only make the 90bhp so they can charge more for the 110bhp, I know this is n't just a Ford thing, but it is boring.

Nice car though, shame about the bodykit.

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