Compact car; Built in Mexico
  • 2-door hatchback
  • 4-door sedan
  • 4-door wagon
  • transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $2,000 – $6,200*

2000 Ford Focus 4-door sedan

2001 Ford Focus ZX3 2-door hatchback

2000 Ford Focus interior

2001 Ford Focus 4-door wagon

2001 Ford Focus 4-door sedan

  • Cargo room (wagon)
  • Control layout
  • Fuel economy
  • Handling/roadholding
  • Acceleration
  • Engine noise
  • Rear-seat entry/exit (hatchback)

Less refined than a class-leading Honda Civic and not as polished as the more conservative Toyota Corolla, the Focus offers more room, style, and body types than any competitor. Despite timid engines, it’s also fun to drive. Word of advice: Don’t buy a small car without checking out the Focus, but avoid trouble-prone 2000 models.


Named Car of the Year in Europe in 1999, Ford’s subcompact premium Focus arrived in North America as a 2000 model. Slightly larger than the fading Escort, the Focus came in three body styles: hatchback coupe in sporty ZX3 trim; four-door sedan in LX, SE, and top-of-the-line ZTS form; and as a 4-door SE station wagon. Compared to the Escort, the new Focus was 3 inches taller and about 4.5 inches longer, in both wheelbase and overall size. A 110-horsepower version of the Escort’s single-cam 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine went into LX and SE models. Standard in the ZTS and ZX3, optional for SE, was a 130-hp twincam 2.0-liter four, as used in the Escort-based ZX2 coupe. Both engines teamed with either 5-speed manual shift or a 4-speed automatic transmission. Rear child-seat anchors were installed, and head/chest front side airbags were optional. Antilock brakes were standard on the ZTS, optional on others. Head/chest front side airbags were optional. During the 2000 model year, a special Sony Edition joined the Focus lineup.

Yearly Updates

2001 Focus
Ford’s AdvanceTrac antiskid control system became optional in the Focus’s second season, intended to counter skids in turns. Combined with all-disc brakes, it was available for the ZTS and ZX3. The ZX3 got a newly optional Premium Group, and its Power Group added power locks and remote entry.
Powertrain choices were shuffled a bit. The 110-hp engine remained standard in LX and SE sedans. The 130-hp twincam four was standard in the SE wagon as well as the ZTS and ZX3, and optional in the SE sedan. Previously offered only with automatic, wagons could now have a manual transmission.
2002 Focus
Focus added a new body style, a sport-trim wagon, and a sporty SVT variant for 2002. The SVT came only as a 2-dr hatchback with manual transmission and included a sport suspension and 17-inch wheels. A new ZTW wagon had standard leather upholstery, fog lights, and 16-inch wheels.
Newly optional on higher-line models was an antiskid system that included ABS and traction control. A sunroof and 6-disc in-dash CD player were other new options.
2003 Focus
Ford added a 4-door hatchback version of the sporty SVT. New options included an MP3 player and hi-intensity discharge headlamps on the SVT.
2004 Focus
Standard on top-trim models was a new 2.3-liter 4-cylinder engine that made 145 horsepower. It mated to either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission. The optional antiskid system that was added in 2001, was no longer available.


transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive

In 2000, two engines were offered, both 4-cylinders: A 110-horsepower single overhead-cam 2.0-liter, and a twincam 2.0-liter that produced 130 horsepower. Both engines could have either a 5-speed manual transmission or optional 4-speed automatic. Focus SVT hatchback carried a 170-hp 2-liter 4-cylinder and 5-spped manual, a 6-speed manual transmission was offered later. Added in 2004 was a 2.3-liter 4-cylinder with 145 horsepower. It could be had with either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic.

ohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.0/121
Engine HP 110
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 125
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.0/121
Engine HP 130
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 135
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.3/138
Engine HP 145
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 149
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.0/121
Engine HP 170
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 145
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
5-speed manual
6-speed manual


Road Test

Any Focus tackles twisty roads with linear, communicative steering, well-controlled body lean, and outstanding grip from the 15-inch tires that are standard on most models. Firm suspensions yield a flat, wallow-free highway ride, but bumps register with a thump. Honda’s Civic rides softer and is quieter. Antilock braking feels strong and stable, with only moderate nosedive in simulated “panic” stops. Sporty SUV tackles twisty roads with the tenacity of a sports coupe, but suffers from too much body lean and an overly firm ride.

Base 4-cylinder provides tepid acceleration with either manual or automatic transmission. Dual-camshaft engine has adequate power, running from 0-60 mph in 9.3 seconds with manual transmission. The larger 2.3-liter engine added in 2004 feels more energetic–especially with automatic–reaching 60 mph in just 9.1 seconds. Zippy SUV model has best acceleration, racing from 0-60 mph in just 8.1 seconds, but delivers best go above 3000 rpm where engine noise grows annoying. Base engine with manual transmission averaged 26.2 mpg. A 2.3-liter four with automatic averaged 22.3 mpg. Wind rush is noticeable, but noise is acceptable otherwise and engines are tolerably smooth.

Few subcompacts are roomier than a Focus. Occupants sit comfortably upright on Charlie cushions, enjoying bountiful head clearance and plenty of rear leg space, though rear head room is less generous. Controls are conspicuous and smooth-operating, and the air conditioner operates in all vent modes. No gauge is unobstructed, but the tachometer in the ZX3 and SSTs lacks a redline. Large front-door frames ease entry/exit, but rear doors don’t open all that far. Cargo holds are generous, and rear seats flip/fold flat. Liftover are low, and the sedan’s trundled hinges don’t intrude into luggage space. Some test models have had poor-fitting interior panels.


Model Tested: 2001 Ford Focus LX sedan

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 3
Fuel Economy - 7
Ride Quality - 4
Steering/Handling - 5
Quietness - 4


Controls/Materials - 7
Room/Comfort Front - 5
Room/Comfort Rear - 5
Cargo Room - 3


Value - 8

Total: 51


2-door hatchback
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
103.0 168.1 66.9 56.3
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
18.5 13.2 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.3 38.7 43.1 37.6
4-door sedan
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
103.0 174.9 66.9 56.3
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
12.9 13.2 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.3 38.5 43.1 37.6
4-door wagon
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
103.0 178.2 66.9 57.0
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
55.3 13.2 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
39.3 40.0 43.1 37.6
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2000 Focus 2-door hatchback


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Front Passenger Injury - 5

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 4
Rear Passenger Injury - 1


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision 103
Injury 120
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Climate control
Description: The ventilation system may make fluttering noises when using the panel/defrost setting due to a problem with the linkage or whistle when the blower is running due to a gap on the resistor mounting. (2000)
Engine noise
Description: Engine vibration while idling in reverse may be due to stones lodging in the rear, engine roll restrictor. (2000-05)
Fuel pump
Description: The fuel hose between the filler neck and tank may flake and clog. In-tank fuel filter and hoses are being replaced under a recall. (2000)
Heater core
Description: Installing a restrictor in the heater inlet hose may repair heater cores leaks. (2000-2002)
Vehicle noise
Description: The right motor mount could break due to defective hardware resulting in noise, vibration, and possible driveshaft damage. Redesigned mounts were being installed under a recall. (2000)
Water leak
Description: Rough engine running in wet weather caused by water leaking onto wiring from gap near center joint in cowl grille. (2000-02)

Recall History

Description: Hub retaining nuts can loosen, allowing left rear wheel and brake-drum assembly to separate.
2000 w/speed control
Description: Control-cable core wire could catch on sleeve at cable end during wide-open throttle acceleration, preventing throttle from returning to idle.
Description: Decklid wire harness on certain cars can fatigue and develop broken wires, resulting in loss of individual lamp functions or electrical short.
2000-01 wagon and hatchback
Description: In certain vehicles with folding 60/40 second seat, when the 60-percent portion is folded down and load is applied to front edge of load floor, outboard-hinge pivot could disengage.
Description: A switch located in the plastic cover of the wiper-motor gear case could malfunction and overheat, potentially resulting in loss of wiper function or fire.
Description: Cars equipped with Zetec engines may have faulty battery cables, causing a short to occur, and possibly resulting in the illumination of the check-engine light and fire. Dealer will inspect and replace affected part.
Description: On certain cars, bolts in the steering knuckle may become loose, resulting in vibration and eventual decrease in steering control. Dealer will inspect and tighten all loose bolts.
2000-04 four-/five-door
Description: Build-up of corrosion at pawl pivot area of rear door latch on certain cars sold or registered in specified states can cause binding; if not latched properly, the door may open while vehicle is moving.
Description: Seatback recliner handle spring on some vehicles could be damaged, causing seatback to be loose or to recline unexpectedly.
Description: Contanimation of fuel-filter delivery module can block fuel flow to the engine, causing stalling.
2002 SVT
Description: Throttle may not return to the closed position when the accelerator is released. It may be necessary to depress the clutch and apply the brake to stop the vehicle.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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