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Focus

Hi:
Interesting post. The Focus was among my top 3 choices when it came to getting a replacement for my Escort. My partner was also looking for a car and we drove a Focus wagon, although not the PZEV model. I was impressed by the room (much larger than the Escort I was replacing). I wasn't able to get anywhere near the price you quoted for your Focus, however. The wagon with the PZEV engine would have run me about 17k, not including tax and license, with a decent option package. I was also drawn to the ZX5 with the same engine, and that would have cost me about 16k before tax and license.
My second choice (after the Prius) was a Jetta TDI wagon or a Golf TDI hatchback. My partner has a TDI wagon; it is very well engineered, but the A/C just died on him at 70k miles and the dealer wants about 250 bucks just to look at it; God knows what it would cost to actually fix it. It is a fun car to drive and handles well especially on corners.
When I finally test drove a Prius, something clicked. I realize there are cars that perform better and get great mileage, but something about this car tweaked my enthusiasm the way few other cars ever did. It is cutting edge future technology and I made a committment to invest in the technology with the most promise for reducing emissions as well as getting good mileage. The Prius is all about emission reduction; the mileage is a bonus thrown in because it is so efficient.
I read Consumer Reports, and I have to agree with the other poster who mentioned CR. The Focus and the Jetta are nowhere near as reliable as the Prius (read "Toyota"). For about 6k more than the Focus and about what I would pay for the Jetta, I bought into the next generation of automobile. I don't expect to make my money back in gas savings and I think people are kidding themselves if they think they will. I do expect reliable service from a company that makes the best cars on the planet and I expect to have a lot of fun driving it.
Performance is measured in many ways: I know the Focus and the Jetta will accelerate faster than my Prius, but I still prefer driving my car to driving my partner's Jetta.
Bob in Seattle
 

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Attempt to answer the original question Why?

I have seen few responders answer the question posed.
Here is my try at answering the question:

1) The Prius uses no gas when it is stopped in traffic or crawling on the beltway. If you live in the Washington DC metro area, this is a way of life. I doubt you would see 30 mpg going 5 mph at rush hour with the AC running in the Focus.

2) People talk like 30 mpg is great. well 45 mpg is 50% better. I don't consider that to be a small difference. If everyone's car got 50% better than the Focus there would be no need for enemy oil or our soldiers defending it.

3) The Prius is very very quiet. Even with the engine running at highway speeds you can listen to the radio at low volume.

4) As others have mentioned, Ford is not known for its high reliability. I have first hand experience with this as well.

5) The car has much better gadgets and equipment than the Focus. The gadgets were well thought out.

6) Prius has a cult following that does not require shaving your head and wearing a bathrobe.

7.) You can confuse people by putting an NRA sticker on your Prius.

8.) Purchasing a Prius makes the most powerful political statement an individual can peacefully make. The only way to get car manufacturers to change is by hitting them in the wallet. At over 100,000 cars sold and a waiting list, the big two are seeing their market share erode. Once bankrupt, the same conservative politicians who refused to regulate fuel economy due the cost, will find zillions of dollars under the mattress to bail out the bankrupt company executives but not the workers pensions. (Sorry I got carried away here, hard to stay off that soap box.....)

9.) The analysis you used for cost/benefit only works for todays cost of gas. When I installed in-floor heating in our house in 2000 everyone laughed at me and said we would never ever recover the cost of the system. Well in last years cold winter we were getting $100 a month heating bills while our neighbors were paying $400 to $500 per month. Our break even point is now two more years at todays prices.

10.)The Focus is a nice car, it was our second choice to the Prius, but we were blessed with a good year and as a recovering Republican I had to get the Prius.
 

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Well for all of the upity Prius owners out there who have been insulted, threateend, felt under fire, etc. by the initial post and his questions - get over it. I posted here a month ago - the radar detectors, 107 mph, cool toys post - and just as I experienced, I see this poster is also getting both barrels from this group.

Based off of my rather limited experince, the typical prius owner is an upity, better than thou, smug little *******.

Its a fucking car - get over it.
 

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michaelsteiner1 said:
Well for all of the upity Prius owners out there who have been insulted, threateend, felt under fire, etc. by the initial post and his questions - get over it. I posted here a month ago - the radar detectors, 107 mph, cool toys post - and just as I experienced, I see this poster is also getting both barrels from this group.

Based off of my rather limited experince, the typical prius owner is an upity, better than thou, smug little *******.

Its a fucking car - get over it.
Wow, are you rude to all your friends like this? Upity? Smug? Bastards? and if we don't like what you say, we should just "get over it"?

Oh, please. :roll:

Nobody got "both barrels." Don't be silly. Do you overstate everything whenever somebody disagrees with you?
 

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michaelsteiner1 said:
Well for all of the upity Prius owners out there who have been insulted, threateend, felt under fire, etc. by the initial post and his questions - get over it. I posted here a month ago - the radar detectors, 107 mph, cool toys post - and just as I experienced, I see this poster is also getting both barrels from this group.

Based off of my rather limited experince, the typical prius owner is an upity, better than thou, smug little *******.

Its a fucking car - get over it.
*clears throat*

Look, you can attack ideas all you want but the moment you start attacking people then that is where I start stepping in and telling people that they need to cool it.
 

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Re: Attempt to answer the original question Why?

[
10.)The Focus is a nice car, it was our second choice to the Prius, but we were blessed with a good year and as a recovering Republican I had to get the Prius.[/quote]
Is being a "recovering Republican" like being a recovering Catholic? I'm the latter but have never considered being the former.
Bob
 

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I had a 2001 Focus station wagon and replaced it with my 02 Prius! Why you ask? The Focus is a very well engineered car that I think Ford ruined with cheap cost cutting manufacturing. Here is what I experience with The Focus wagon I purchased. It only a 12 gallon gas tank and at best got 21 or less mpg. This required gasing up much to often (almost every other day). Another reason was, the Focus was so noisy at freeway or highway speeds, I had to turn the radio up to uncomfortable levels to drown out the road and engine noise and than if that were not enough, there where the recalls to correct dangerous mechanical conditions with the Focus!

With all this and Fords well earned reputation for poor reliability, I decided to get rid of it.

I purchased a 2002 Prius and I have not had any regrets.
 

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michaelsteiner1 said:
Well for all of the upity Prius owners out there who have been insulted, threateend, felt under fire, etc. by the initial post and his questions - get over it. I posted here a month ago - the radar detectors, 107 mph, cool toys post - and just as I experienced, I see this poster is also getting both barrels from this group.

Based off of my rather limited experince, the typical prius owner is an upity, better than thou, smug little *******.

Its a fucking car - get over it.
Lol. I am not insulted, threatened or feel under fire, however, the description of "upity, better than thou, smug little *******" fits me to a T.

Got a problem with that? :twisted:
 

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Re: Attempt to answer the original question Why?

Bob Allen said:
[
10.)The Focus is a nice car, it was our second choice to the Prius, but we were blessed with a good year and as a recovering Republican I had to get the Prius.
Is being a "recovering Republican" like being a recovering Catholic? I'm the latter but have never considered being the former.
Bob[/quote]

Bob,

I am not sure, perhaps you have had better judgement than I.
Sam
 

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I have held my tongue as long as I can. My daughter has a first year focus and it has had a lot of recalls. I see this as a good thing. Ford is stepping up to the plate and fixing problems. I see a number of recalls / update / what ever on the Prius also first model year. This is also good. I think the manufactures are changing their attitudes maybe not fast enough but changing.
On the issue of the environmental friendliness between the Focus and the Prius there is no contest. Remember I bought this car for my daughter, if you do not have a daughter you do not get it but if you are lucky you will. From day one the Prius was built to be environmentally friendly. We get hung up on the gas millage thing, and the low emissions thing, and this is important, but the Prius goes way beyond this. It is 90%+ recyclable. The plastic used in the car is not Petro plastic but bio plastic. There is a plant waiting to recycle our batteries. The NMH was chosen over other system so it could be recycled. This is a echo car. Echo car is job one. The Ford is commendable but it does not touch the Prius standard. My daughter covets a mini but I would be proud to see her in a car such as the Prius for "her first car" i.e. the one she buys her self.
 

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In my first (15 pages back in January of 2003) of four letters to toyota (all went basically unanswered - even one by my local assemblyman to the president of toyota asking at least for a response of some sort), I recall telling toyota ALL about my purchasing decision, vehicle problems, unresolved problems and seemingly blow off treatment. It included my diplomatically disuade my wife away from the ford focus and selling her on my choice the (much more expensive) prius. Unfortunately, in my case, I found myself running back and forth to dealerships (4) with the problems I was having with my car. The major items included the 12 volt battery that was shot shortly after one year and had me stranded a few time after leaving the hazard lights on for no more than five minutes, three sets of tires, rack replacement, multiple alignments, and a steering wheel that could not be aligned (two dealers tried as well as two different stores of the Mavis discount tires chain for a total of three times).

I had subsequentlhy heard about the poor ratings the focus received and the numerous recalls. I touted this to my wife towards the wisdom of my choice in the prius. I LOVED the car, the hybrid technology no doubt, but as I looked around and saw an emerging (same) pattern in the cars, I felt that my problems were much more than the luck of the draw. "MY" dealings with toyota at Torrence California, the factory service reps, specially trained service and write-up persons were revealing as the heart of my situations ripened in their face: noone then stepped up to the plate. I felt that because so few private individuals had the car, it seemed easier to gloss over the issues and try to placate me. I had two vehicles when I bought the prius and still had them two years later. I spent a slot of money and time on the Prius. In my case, it did not seem like toyota was living up to their written claim to quality and committment to customer satisfaction. Two abritration ensued. I paid to have transcripts made of the second, wherein they again seemed to fein knowledge of the problems. The problems many were having with the tires and rack: Pictures and videos of many cars and Toyota Dealer servicing notwithstanding.

I would not have bought the focus; if it was not a Hybrid, and the prius at that, I would not have bought a new car. Given my experience and situation, I'd like to make sure that whatever the problem, users in here searching for a wider perspective or answers, see one and with such information seek to have toyota properly address and FIXIT.
 

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On the other hand...

From an economic/environmental standpoint, I do think that it is important to remember that not everyone who's interestered in weighting enviromental considerations into their car purchase can afford a $20k+ car. The Focus does offer a decent PZEV package at a lower price point. I'd like to see all PZEV vehicles heavily promoted.

As a VERY long time subscriber of CR, yes, I do think reliability of the Focus line is on the upswing. Nonetheless, as someone who would like to see Ford do better for reasons I won't get into, I remain disappointed that it took them this many model years to get to somewhat above average ratings.

But, given I do have enough wherewithall to afford the Prius and my PERSONAL EXPERIENCE with Toyotas and Nissans vs. Fords and other American makes in regard to reliability (and with some techno-geekiness and other considerations thrown in), I decided on the Prius.

Nonetheless, although environmental concerns are a big component of my decision for a daily driver, I'd still like to have a Maserati Bora some day as an occasional fun car. Yes INCREDIBLY fuel inefficient, unreliable, and unsafe. But hey, I accept the one's personal motivations may be in opposition at times.

About a month away from a Salsa Red #9
 

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FIXIT,

I'm a simpleton, and am unable to follow your post. Are you complaining about the Focus, the Prius, or both? I really couldn't tell. If you had a problem, can you describe it with smaller words and be more precise?

I'm not trying to come down on you, I simply don't know what you said. :)

Earlier, someone called Prius owners Rude and Upity (or something like that). Your opinion is fare. But I think your profanities at the end are uncalled for. It certainly invalidates everything you said before it.

As for Recovering Republicans vs. Recovering Catholics; I've known both. They were recovering from being burned by what they believed in. So in a way, it is the same.

cthulhu, I'm a huge Mustang fan. I'd love to own an old Mustang with a 351 Cleveland engine in it!!! Here is a car that gets crappy gas millage, is a FORD, and has little smog reduction added to it!!!! :D

Now I'm going to take my "Upity" self outa here and see what going on in the Technical side!! :)
 

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CaPriusLover wrote:

cthulhu, I'm a huge Mustang fan. I'd love to own an old Mustang with a 351 Cleveland engine in it!!! Here is a car that gets crappy gas millage, is a FORD, and has little smog reduction added to it!!!!
My first car was a 65 Mustang, however, it was only a 189 and was prone to overheating in the summer and I had to replace the clutch twice in 5 years. I should point out that it was older than me when I got it :) But it was generally easy to work on even with my limited ability.

My partisan bias towards Ford derives from the fact that my dad worked for Ford Aerospace and we'd get a new Ford lease car every year. It is very telling though that our second car was a Toyota Corona that my family got new in 1968. When I became totally frustrated with the Mustang in 1986, I used the Corona as a replacement until I bought a Tercel. It was still running well when my Dad sold it a couple of years later. I'm amazed to continue to see the occassional Corona on the road every year. Hundreds of thousands late 60's Mustangs were produced and there's a big fan base so doesn't surprise me to see them but I'd guess that the number of Corona's that made it over numbered in the low thousands. Consider the respective survival rates...
 

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speaking of Ford

from the Ford Escape Hybrid website

"The Environment has long been a part of the Ford philosophy."

That's enough to make a cat laugh.
 

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michaelsteiner1 said:
I think I also wanted to see if Prius owners are as self-righteous as rumored. I'm working on that answer.
I actually considered printing a bumper sticker that reads "This car powered by my own self-righteousness" as a joke.
 
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