Ford Focus (2004-2011)

The second-generation Focus didn't create the same stir its predecessor did. Introducing significant improvements was always going to be tough, but Ford pulled it off somehow; the Mk2 Focus was sleeker, better to drive, more reliable and more refined than its predecessor. Thanks to it being the UK's best-selling new car month after month, there are huge numbers available - with an engine, trim and bodystyle for everyone.

Key Dates

9/04: The second-edition Focus arrives in three or five-door hatchback, saloon and estate forms. Engine options span 1.4 petrol to a 2.0-litre diesel.

3/06: A 1.8-litre petrol engine arrives.

9/05: The 221bhp Focus ST appears,

7/06: A coupé-cabriolet is introduced.

12/07: A facelifted Focus brings sharper looks, a much better interior and cleaner engines. The 1.6 TDCi Econetic is introduced.

1/09: The 301bhp Focus RS appears.

Ford Focus (2004-2011) Checklist

  • Clicking noises on the 1.6 auto requires re-routing of the gear shift's control cable.
  • Coupé-cabriolets can suffer from sealing issues.
  • Estates can leak because of poor sealing around the tailgate hinges.
  • Diesel engines can revert to limp-home mode when the intercooler pipe cracks or through throttle butterfly faults.
  • The dipstick on 1.6 diesels can fall apart.
  • Replacing the passenger side headlamp bulb isn't easy.
  • The windscreen can leak in the top centre while the front door seals also work loose.
  • The trailing edge of the front wheelarches can corrode.
  • Windscreen washer pipes leak, allowing water to drain into the spark plug holes, leading to the plugs seizing in place.
  • Starting and running problems can be due to the battery draining overnight; the only fix is a software update.

We Like

  • Value
  • Dynamics
  • Practicality

We Don't Like

  • Ubiquity
  • Breathless 1.4 petrol