Ford on form with this top-class Focus

The latest Focus is engaging and enjoyable to drive and boasts some of Ford's finest engines.

The latest Focus is engaging and enjoyable to drive and boasts some of Ford's finest engines. - Credit: Ford

A legend in its own lifetime, Ford's Focus is a family hatchback that towers over the opposition, says Iain Dooley of the Press Association.

Used Car: Ford Focus (2011 onwards)

Engines – This generation of Focus boasts some of Ford's finest engines, with the quiet and refined petrol motors perfectly complementing the more frugal diesels. Compromise is a dirty word in the Ford household as there isn't a duff motor to be found in the range.


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Exterior – It may have grown a little larger over the years and its edgy appearance has softened slightly but this latest-generation Focus has lost none of its original appeal.

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Interior – Build and material quality levels are impressive, and there's no shortage of space for passengers and their belongings. The overall cabin ambience is a pleasingly upmarket one, and allows the Focus to compete head on with more expensive rivals.

Driving – For all the many cosmetic changes, this Focus remains the same engaging and enjoyable car to drive as all the previous models. Crucially, these qualities set the Focus apart from its many rivals. And even if you're not a super-keen driver, the Focus is capable of delivering an easy-going, refined experience for long motorway journeys and urban shopping trips.

Ownership – Easy to drive and own plus boasting the support of a huge dealer network, this is a car that will bring a smile to your face. There's plenty of space for a growing family and running a Focus is unlikely to break the bank regardless of engine choice.

What to look for – There's no shortage of choice and, crucially, condition to choose from. For something this new there's no excuse for a patchy service history. If it was a company car it might be a detailed printout, but at least it's a credible record. Parking dents and kerbed wheels are a fact of life, but they could be hiding more serious damage. Cabin trim should be spotless – any marks or damage should have you walking away.

Model history – 2011, Ford introduces latest-generation Focus hatchback with a wide choice of advanced and frugal petrol and diesel engines. Five-door and estate bodystyles are available plus a generous selection of standard and optional equipment including high-end audio and intelligent safety kit.

Reasons to buy – Plenty of choice, a proven performer, extensive dealer support, good to drive, easy on the eye.

Reasons to beware – Used and abused cars, patchy service records, low-spec cars.

Pick of the range – Focus 1.0 EcoBoost Titanium five-door.

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