Common Ford Focus transmission problems

The Ford Focus is one of the world’s most famous hatchbacks which means that pretty much everyone is aware of the Focus. It is a car that manages to sell pretty well all around the world, even in today’s day and age when SUVs and crossovers rule the market. However, Ford decided to retire the Focus in favor of making more SUVs and crossovers.

This means that there are loads of potentially great Ford Focus used cars on the market, only waiting to be snatched by their prospective new owners. However, before you buy anything, you need to be aware of everything that comes with a used Focus, primarily in the reliability and dependability department.

One of the most talked-about components in a Ford Focus is the transmission that isn’t the very best automatic transmission on the planet. It suffers from common issues such as issues with stalling, shaking and shuddering, and hesitation which seem to be common on many Ford Focus models.

All in all, the Focus is a fairly popular second hard car for a reason as it truly does manage to satisfy the hatchback market niche really well. If you are interested in one, be sure to do a pre-purchase inspection in order to be 100% sure that the car is in good order.

 Ford Focus transmission stalling problems

Because of a faulty calibration to the transmission control module, the Focus is known to sometimes stall. Ford recognized this issue and they stated that the automatic transmission found in the Focus “may exhibit intermittent concerns of loss of transmission engagement while driving, intermittent no start, or a loss of power.”

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Many customers have reported these issues and the most common occurrence is that the car suddenly shifts into neutral and it prompts the “transmission problem service” warning light. Owners state that these issues are prevalent both on low speeds and high speeds such as on a highway. It comes as no surprise that a transmission issue such as this one at highway speeds could even cause an accident.

There is some data to indicate that this issue is associated with a faulty clutch as well. Some even say that a faulty shifting unit could also be the case. No matter which one of these is the issue, be sure to take your car to a Ford dealer if you ever come across any of these issues as you don’t want them to happen ever again.

Ford Focus transmission shaking and shuddering issues

According to many customers who bought various generations of the Focus, the transmission isn’t particularly smooth or welcoming because it can shake and sometimes even shudder in a violent fashion. Ford states that “a degree of vibration, or shudder, when the all-new automatic transmission operated at low speed,” and said it was, “similar to what is experienced with a manual transmission.”

However, not everyone is convinced that these issues are as little as Ford wants you to believe. Many owners have complained about these exact issues, but in a manner in which the car feels unsafe, unstable, and often on a brink of stalling. Because these issues are often experienced during acceleration, if you stall in a busy intersection, you could get rear-ended really easily.

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Some say that this even led to the transmissions’ clutch failing completely and leaving them stranded on the side of a road. No matter what a Ford dealer might tell you, you ought to get your transmission checked because way too many owners complained that these issues eventually resulted in something more serious.

Ford Focus transmission hesitation issues

The Ford Focus transmission is also known to be slipping or hesitating while going through gears. According to experienced Ford mechanics, these issues are directly associated with either transmission fluid contamination or the transmission’s control module. Both of these require you to act promptly, otherwise, the transmission could fail completely.

When it comes to fluid replacements, these should be done according to Ford’s recommendations. You simply can not forget to do these as contaminated transmission fluid can kill your transmission completely which means that a new transmission is in order and those tend to cost way too much money.

The control module can easily be replaced or sometimes even a simple reset could solve the issue. All in all, these can be fixed without too much trouble, but always be sure to replace and flush your transmission fluid whenever necessary.

FAQ Section

Should I buy a Ford Focus?

If you want a fairly affordable, yet relatively dependable modern hatchback that can seat four people without a problem, the Ford Focus is a great choice. There are many hatchbacks out there yet the Focus often seems to be one of the most popular choices out there. The reason why is simply because the Focus is a really well-rounded car.

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It is really a shame Ford decided to discontinue it, especially when you consider that the Focus RS was one of the most exciting and most capable hot hatchbacks out there.

 How much does it cost to fix a Ford Focus transmission?

Average Ford Focus transmission repair costs range between $1,500 and $2,500 for a new clutch. A completely new transmission unit is likely going to cost you between $3,500 and $5,000. Some people are even willing to go for a used Focus transmission which can sometimes be a good idea, but it can also often be a really bad idea.

No matter which way you decide to go, be sure to keep the transmission in its optimal state if you want it to last a considerable amount of time.

Which Ford Focus models suffer from transmission issues the most?

As stated in plenty of forums and charts online, the 2012 to 2016 Ford Focus models seem to be the ones that experience transmission issues the most. That is not to say that these models should be avoided, but rather that you need to pay extra attention to the transmission if you are interested in buying a Ford Focus from this era.

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Marko Mikulic

Why do you love writing about cars? I love writing about cars as cars are a huge personal interest of mine. I was raised in a car enthusiast community and ever since I was young, I always wanted to do car-related work.

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