Pre-loved: Ford Focus 2011-2022

2011 Ford Focus 1
2011 Ford-Focus


Ford Focus is a small-medium European model that has never had the success it deserves in Australia.

That’s probably because dual-clutch automatics sold from 2011 till 2015 had many problems and this led to the car earning a poor reputation.

The dual-clutch was replaced by a six-speed conventional torque converter automatic transmission in September, 2015 as part of a major makeover of the complete range.

Ford Focus is pretty well made these days, though generally not to the extremely high standards of the Asian models.

What the Focus does do better than the Asians is providing superior handling and overall driving pleasure.

That’s even in the standard models which have attracted quite a few keen drivers.

Even better, Focus comes in several sports variants.

Ride comfort is pretty good in the standard cars, but they can be on the harsh side on rough roads.

However, the sports models may be on the firm side for those looking for comfort ahead of road holding.

Showing its Euro heritage, Focus is very good at high speed on motorways where speed limits are 130km/h. 

Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a 130 limit in Australia?

Sadly, that’s highly unlikely because of the nonsense being preached here that “Every K over is a killer”.

The third generation of the Ford Focus arrived in Australia in November, 2011 as the LW series.

The gen-four, tagged as LZ Focus replaced it in July, 2015.

The LZ is actually a solid facelift of LW not a full-on new model.

Every visible component in front of the windscreen was changed.

This resulted slimmer headlights and a sleeker slope of the bonnet.

Ford’s signature trapezoidal grille was modified with a sharper look. 

The rear-end has slimmer lights and modified lines that give the Focus a wider look.

Focus LZ is probably the one to aim for you can afford it.

It has Ford Sync2 which lets the driver operate the air conditioning, audio system, satellite navigation and a linked smartphone with voice commands.

Aiming to give the Focus a more upmarket image Ford Australia dropped the lower cost Ambiente model.

The LZ no longer had the turbo-diesel option and the non-turbo 1.6-litre petrol engine was replaced with a new design 1.5-litre turbo-petrol — EcoBoost in Ford speak.

These EcoBoost Ford powerplants are hi-tech units that are significantly better than previous engines and are well worth finding extra money in your budget.

In April, 2021 Ford Australia added a premium flagship to the Focus ST range, the limited-run Focus ST-3.

It was available as a single, range-topping model limited to 200 units. 

The Focus ST-3 has a panoramic sunroof, heated and electrically adjustable front Recaro sports seats with lumbar support, B&O Play 10-speaker sound system with sub-woofer, and head-up display.

It sits on 19-inch machined alloy wheels fitted with 235/35 Pirelli P-Zero tyres.

The front and rear brake components are clearly visible, standing out with red brake calipers to give it a sporting look.

Inside, the Focus ST-3 has heated and electrically adjustable Recaro sports seats trimmed in leather and suede with larger bolsters for improved lateral support during cornering.

Both front seats feature ST logos and have lumbar support.

With Ford now offering Puma and Escape SUVs the Focus was discontinued at the end of 2021. 

Ford is strongly represented in Australian country areas reflecting, in particular, the love of Falcons by buyers in the bush.

Dealers in more remote areas may not have spares for the Focus in stock, but can usually get them shipped in within a few working days.

Routine service work can be done by a competent amateur.

Please don’t tackle any safety related items yourself, though. A workshop manual is always a smart investment in any car.

With the exception of the sports models, insurance charges are usually moderate.

If insurance premiums seem too high and you have a clean driving record it’s smart to shop around and even haggle for a lower price.

Some companies are happy to do this, others aren’t …

2011 Ford Focus 2
2011 Ford Focus



Scratches on the top of the rear bumper probably mean someone used it as support when loading and unloading the boot.

Look for damage to the seats and door trim, as well as carpets.

Previous body repairs may have caused uneven panel work.

Sight along the surfaces against the light to see if there are ripples.

Similarly, paint that doesn’t quite match from panel to panel and/or paint over-spray on non-coloured surfaces is another sign a car has probably spent time in a repair shop. 

Check the dual-clutch PowerShift automatic transmission isn’t harsh in its changes and doesn’t slip out of gear.

Be sure the electrical systems are okay by turning everything on and off.

The owner’s manual gives you a list of all functions.

Shuddering under braking probably indicate warped brake discs.

2015 Ford Focus 1
2015 Ford Focus



Expect to pay from $4000 to $7000 for a 2011 Ford Focus CL; $6000 to $10,000 for a 2013 Trend; $7000 to $11,000 for a 2015 Ambiente; $9000 to $14,000 for a 2014 Titanium or a 2011 XR5; $12,000 to $18,000 for a 2015 Sport; $15,000 to $21,000 for a 2017 Titanium or a 2019 Trend; $18,000 to $25,000 for a 2018 ST-Line; $22,000 to $30,000 for a 2019 ST2; $26,000 to $35,000 for a 2016 RS; and $32,000 to $43,000 for a 2021 ST-3.

2011 Ford Focus RS
Focus RS



Take a friend with you when shopping for a used car.

That way they can keep the chattering sales person at bay while you check out the car without interruptions.

Used car prices have generally increased during the period of new car stock shortages.

Start looking at adverts for used vehicles several months before you intend buying.

That way you can get a feel for the price being asked and whether they are rising and falling, as dealers need to clear stock due to overcrowding.

Keep an eye on adverts for new cars that say there are specials on particular models.

This can lead to a lot of traded-ins taking up too much space in yards and they will be discounted to get rid of them.

Keep an eye open for ads of unpopular cars, as there can vary greatly in price.

Owners struggling to find a buyers may be forced to grit their teeth and drop their asking price.

If checking a used car at a dealership look at other cars on the lot. 

This can provide an insight into the quality of the vehicles in which the dealer specialises.

If buying privately ask for proof of ownership and make sure the insurance covers you for taking a test drive.

Take a slow walk around any car you’re considering, looking for obvious defects.

It amuses us how many people dive into tiny details, only to discover later a major ding somewhere on the other side of the car.

Ideally any road test of a car you’re getting serious about should be done with the engine stone cold. Early morning is best.

If you’re serious about buying a vehicle, tell the seller you would like to take it for a good long test drive.

If they insist on coming that’s understandable, but try to avoid them “selling” the car to you.

Put bluntly, ask them to shut up,

In their later years, cars with a reputation for being long lived and trouble free sometimes attract buyers who have no intention of ever servicing them.

The next owner may suffer as a result.

2021 Ford Focus 1
2021 Focus



To browse recalls on all vehicles go to the ACCC at:



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