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$5,612 - $7,781
$16,500 - $22,700

Pros & Cons

  • Superb handling
  • Attractive, high-quality interior
  • Great fuel economy
  • Complicated infotainment system




Critics' Rating: 9.3
Performance: 8.4
Interior: 7.7
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.5
Safety: 9.0
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2012 Ford Focus Overview

Some test drivers said the 2012 Ford Focus’ four-cylinder engine has plenty of power, while others thought the Focus is a bit sluggish. They were thrilled with the standard five-speed manual transmission and said it’s a joy to shift. However, some critics said the available six-speed automated manual transmission is slow to shift when more power is needed. The Focus gets an EPA-estimated 28/38 mpg city/highway, which is excellent for the class. An available super fuel economy package (SFE) boosts highway fuel economy to 40 mpg. Reviewers agreed that the Focus has a smooth ride, sharp steering and handles exceptionally well for a compact car, tackling corners with confidence.

Reviewers said that quality materials and solid craftsmanship make the 2012 Focus’ cabin feel more upscale than some rivals’. Most test drivers said the front seats are very comfortable and supportive and the back seat offers adequate head- and legroom. However, a few critics said there isn’t as much rear-seat legroom compared to rivals. The Focus is available in sedan and hatchback body styles. The sedan offers a competitive amount of cargo space for the class and the hatchback offers even more room. The 2012 Ford Focus comes standard with a four-speaker audio system with a CD player, an auxiliary input, a tilt and telescopic steering wheel, power front windows and power door locks. Available features include a MyFord Touch infotainment system with a touch screen, Ford’s voice-activated SYNC system, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, front and rear parking sensors, a power-adjustable driver seat, leather seats and navigation. Also available is Ford’s MyKey, a safety feature that lets parents limit the car’s top speed and the audio volume. Most reviewers said the MyFord Touch system is complicated and takes time to master. Some also wrote that it is prone to errors or slow to respond to inputs.

Other Cars to Consider

Test drivers said the 2012 Mini Cooper offers great cornering ability and an available turbocharged engine with plenty of power. If you like to row your own gears, reviewers also praised its slick six-speed manual transmission.

Reviewers liked the 2012 Volkswagen Golf’s upscale interior, which they said features quality materials. The diesel-powered Golf TDI gets great fuel economy ratings for the class, and critics said that all models offer composed handling.

Compare the Focus, Cooper and Golf »


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