Ford Focus (2004 – 2007) Review

Ford Focus (2004 – 2007) At A Glance


+Superb blend of keen handling and ride comfort. Seats five in comfort. five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating.

-Bland styling. Estates lack sufficient sound proofing. Turbo failure increasingly common on high mileage 1.6 TDCIs. DMF and DPF failures can also make a cheap Focus diesel very expensive.

On average it achieves 86% of the official MPG figure

The original Ford Focus set the benchmark by which all future hatchbacks will be judged for many years to come. So with such high expectations, replacing that car was no easy feat, but Ford managed to deliver with the second generation Ford Focus. Nothing else combines practicality with such a fine driving experience.

Even Volkswagen admitted that the qualities for the original Focus were its goal when designing the 2004 Golf. This Ford Focus moved the game on even further with improved refinement and quality, while the cabin has a more upmarket feel.

There were criticisms when it was first introduced. Mostly to do with the looks as many people thought it has lost its cutting edge styling and was bland as a result. But the spacious cabin and great handling more than made up for this and when Ford replaced this model with the new Ford Focus in 2008 (essentially a facelifted model) it freshened up the design up, giving it a much sharper look.

There's a great choice of engines available, both petrols and frugal TDCI diesels, plus there's the superb performance Ford Focus ST version. But whichever model you opt for, you'll be rewarded with a car that's enjoyable and easy to drive, whether it's in town or on the motorway.

The all round abilities of the Ford Focus are what has made it so popular and as a result there are no shortage of examples on the second hand market, so you'll be spoilt for choice.

 Ford Focus 2005 Range Road Test


Real MPG average for a Ford Focus (2004 – 2007)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

25–65 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

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Ask Honest John

Ford Focus Mk2 - timing belt or chain?
"I have just bought a 60 plate Ford Focus Mk2 1.6 TDCI and I was wondering if it has a timing chain or belt and when this would need replacing. I do not have any paperwork to show the timing belt has been changed, so is there any way of determining myself if this has been done as I do not want to change it unless I need to?"
This engine uses a timing belt. I'd suggest changing it every 60,000 miles or five years (whichever comes first). If you don't have any history paperwork for the car then I'd assume it hasn't been done.
Answered by Dan Powell
What should I buy to replace a Ford Focus?
"Our Ford Focus 1.8 Edge has just passed its MoT with 160,000 miles and still goes like a rocket - everything works. The engine has never been apart and it has the same clutch, exhaust, alternator etc. At the end of this year it will be goodbye. What should we buy next? "
Most conventional Focus buyers are now looking at crossover SUVs. The Ford Puma is one of our favourites – could be a good choice if it's big enough (it's more Fiesta than Focus-sized, although it does have a surprisingly big boot thanks to a 'megabox' storage bay in the boot). If you'd rather stick with a family-sized hatch, a Toyota Corolla Hybrid ought to be a very reliable choice with low running costs.
Answered by Andrew Brady
Should I pay for a gearbox oil change?
"I own an 2007 Ford Focus. It's done 150,000 miles and never had an oil change, should this have been done? Is it too late to do this? "
This version of the Ford Fiesta uses a four-speed torque converter auto transmission, which has a very good reputation for reliability. Unless the car is in mint condition, I'm not sure it's worthwhile spending £300 - £400 draining and replacing the gearbox oil.
Answered by Dan Powell
I need to buy an diesel car on a £1000 budget. What's going to be reliable?
"I'm looking to buy a Ford Focus diesel as I drive an average of 600 miles per week for my job. Budget of about £1000 so 2004 to 2009 model years. Which is the best, most reliable diesel engine at this price? I know the miles will have to be high so what should I look out for? Thanks."
Most diesels for sale at this price will be worn out with sky high mileages. I do not think you'll get much value. I would recommend buying something smaller and petrol-powered, like the Fiesta 1.25 petrol. Ford's four-cylinder engine returns 50mpg on-the-road and has a bullet proof reputation for reliability:
Answered by Dan Powell
More Questions

What does a Ford Focus (2004 – 2007) cost?