Our cars: Ford Focus 1.0T Ecoboost - January
Week ending January 25
Current mileage 8101
Driven this week: 517 miles
Ford Focus review
It's great that Ford fits a DAB radio as standard to the Focus Zetec. Even though many of us listen to a digital radio at home, most car manufacturers have been slow to fit them in our cars.
The Focus's DAB radio has good reception and the sound quality is noticeably better than either FM or AM. In fact, I listen to these wavebands so rarely, I haven’t bothered to program presets for them.
So with the radio being bang up to date, it's a shame the display is so 1980s. Blocky light-blue text on a blue background just doesn't cut it in 2013.
See our Focus on video
Week ending 18 January
Current mileage 7584
Driven this week: 60 miles
The Focus has an annoying trait: when you switch off the engine, it takes a second to actually stop. Some other cars I've driven also do this, and it's usually to ensure that all the fuel is burnt properly before the engine stops, which cuts emissions.
Why is it annoying then? Well, if you’re in a hurry and turn off the engine with the car in gear, and take your foot off the clutch straight away, it’s possible to stall the car – even if you’ve turned the key in the ignition and taken it out of the barrel!
Are any other Ford Focus owners sometimes caught out by this?
Week ending 11 January
Current mileage 7524
Miles driven this week 101
I had the pleasure of driving the Ford Focus 1.0T Ecoboost 100 recently, and it was interesting to put it head to head with my Ecoboost 125 model.
It costs less than the 125 and is slightly cheaper to run, but surely a 1.0-litre engine with 99bhp isn’t enough in a small family car?
Well, yes and no actually. It’s perfectly good around town, but there’s a small but discernable drop-off in performance at higher speeds compared with the more powerful version.
If, like me, you regularly drive on the motorway, the 125 is the better bet. If your Focus will spend most of its time as town transport, I’d recommend the 100.
The best news is that there’s a Focus Ecoboost for everyone, and both are fantastic to drive.
Week ending January 4
Driven this week: 207
Okay, I'll admit it – I was wrong about the radio. When I borrowed our previous Ford Focus 1.6T, I became infuriated by how complicated the DAB system was – to the extent where I gave up and reverted to the FM frequency.
Two weeks with our Ecoboost over the Christmas holiday provided me with the perfect opportunity to master it, and the old adage that 'a bad workman always blames his tools' couldn’t be more appropriate.
Tuning stations and navigating between them, it turns out, is not a complicated process at all; there's a list of stations on the dashboard, with some 'up' and 'down' arrows, and a big 'OK' button on the steering wheel. I was the one making it complicated.
Unfortunately, I've become accustomed to life with a digital radio, and my own car doesn't have one. Incredibly, only 5% of cars sold to date have DAB systems installed, despite 32% of the population listening to digital radio.
I think the time might have come to have an aftermarket system installed.