The 2011 Ford Focus (Base MSRP: $16,640 to $19,670) is a decent sedan, but its fundamental underpinnings are close to a decade old, and it shows. There are many newer alternatives that experts prefer such as the 2011 Honda Civic (Base MSRP: $15,605 to $25,490) and 2011 Mazda3 (Base MSRP: $15,800 to $23,010). The Focus still offers good ride quality and can be equipped with Ford's optional Sync infotainment system that allows users to control many functions with voice commands.
The omission of a coupe variant is the only significant change for the Focus in the 2011 model year. The new 2012 model will have a coupe variant in the form of a two-door hatchback.
The Focus gets 25 mpg city/35 mpg highway/29 mpg combined fuel-economy ratings from the Environmental Protection Agency when equipped with the five-speed manual transmission, and gets one mile per gallon less on the highway and combined cycles when equipped with the four-speed automatic. Standard safety equipment includes antilock brakes, front and rear head airbags, stability control and traction control.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives the 2011 Focus the highest occupancy-protection rating of Good for front, side and rear crashes. The 2011 Ford Focus isn't listed as a Top Safety Pick because it has not yet been tested for roof strength. Many of the Focus' direct competitors are ranked as IIHS Top Safety Picks, however, including well reviewed models like the 2011 Honda Civic (Base MSRP: $15,605 to $25,490), the 2011 Chevrolet Cruze (Base MSRP: $16,275 to $22,225)and the 2011 Volkswagen Golf (Base MSRP: $17,995 to $19,755). The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does not provide federal front or side crash-protection results for the 2011 Focus, though it does give the car 4 out of 5 stars for rollover accident protection.
One will find more to like in this car's replacement, the all-new 2012 Ford Focus (Base MSRP: $16,270 to $22,765), which is a complete redesign and is already gaining status as one of the best new economy car sedans available due to its sharp looks, sophisticated driving manners and high-quality interior. The new 2012 Ford Focus is a global design and is already on sale in the U.S. It has received very favorable reviews based on first impressions.
This review covers the 2011 Ford Focus in detail, offering a good summary of the model. The lack of refinement and low-rent interior are noted as drawbacks, but Edmunds.com editors do like Ford's optional Sync system. The first sentence overview urges consumers to consider the vastly improved new 2012 Focus.
Review: 2011 Ford Focus, Editors of Edmunds.com
2. Edmunds Inside Line
Reviewer Dan Edmunds takes an initial drive of the all-new 2012 Ford Focus and finds that the new car offers polish, interior quality and driving sophistication that the 2011 Ford Focus couldn't even dream of achieving. He finds the Focus is very poised at speed and in corners with minimal harshness.
Review: 2012 Ford Focus Titanium First Drive, Dan Edmunds, Jan. 27, 2011
3. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) awards the 2011 Ford Focus with the highest rating of Good for front-, side- and rear-collision protection. The Focus is not named as a Top Safety Pick because its roof strength has yet to be assessed.
Review: Small Cars, Editors of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration doesn't have full crash-test results for the 2011 Ford Focus. The Focus is only rated for rollover resistance for which it receives 4 stars out of 5. NHTSA has new testing criteria for 2011.
Review: 5-Star Safety Ratings, Editors of SaferCar.gov
This website, run by the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy, lists fuel-economy ratings for nearly all new cars sold in the U.S.. The 2011 Focus delivers 25 mpg city and 34 to 35 mpg highway, depending on transmission choice. While this is good fuel efficiency, the newest crop of economy cars gets even higher mileage.
Review: 2011 Ford Focus, Editors of FuelEconomy.gov
Because the 2011 Ford Focus has only received incremental updates since its last major redesign, the model remains essentially the same as the 2009 model covered in detail here. This report provides a complete analysis of what experts say about the Ford Focus.
Review: 2009 Ford Focus, Editors of ConsumerSearch.com, March 2009