Cost & verdict

Ford Focus Estate review

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Ford Focus Estate
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10 Dec 2015 10:41 | Last updated: 21 Aug 2018 10:03

In this review

Cost & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Ford Focus estate running costs

Its CO2 emissions are competitive, so the Focus Estate – the 1.5-litre diesel model in particular – is a popular and good-value choice for company car drivers. Ford routinely offers good finance deals for private buyers, too. You’ll be able to haggle big savings off the list prices if you’re a cash buyer, but weak resale values mean that a Focus Estate could actually cost more over three years than rivals such as the VW Golf Estate.

The diesel Focus Estate should be economical – the hatchback version of the 1.5 TDCi 120 achieved 58.5mpg in our real-world True MPG economy tests, and the estate should get close to that. However, the 1.0-litre three-cylinder Ecoboost petrols struggle for economy in the real world, so don’t expect any more than 40mpg in everyday use.

Fixed-price servicing is available at reasonable cost, and can be split into monthly payments.

Ford Focus Estate

Ford Focus estate equipment

Entry-level Style Focus Estates get the bare essentials, including electric front windows and door mirrors, and key multimedia functions such as a USB socket, Bluetooth and digital radio, but they miss out on alloy wheels. Zetec is our pick of the range because it offers the best mix of equipment and price. It adds niceties such as alloys and a heated windscreen to Style’s kit list, and it’ll hold its value better than the cheaper trim level, too.

Zetec S brings sportier looks and suspension, but is a big price jump up from standard Zetec. Titanium and Titanium X are even more expensive, to the point where you’ll be getting better value by going for Zetec and adding a few select options. You can add sat-nav, rear parking sensors and cruise control to Zetec and still spend less than Titanium costs, even though Titanium also doesn’t get navigation as standard.

Of the ST models, ST-2 is the best bet because it gets all the kit you could want, including climate control and automatic lights and wipers. All you’ll want to add is sat-nav and it’ll still be much cheaper than an ST-3.

Ford Focus Estate

Ford Focus estate reliability

The Focus achieved slightly below-average scores for reliability in our latest ownership survey. Faulty windscreen wipers, squeaky brakes and battery problems were among the most common complaints. Having said that, the Focus shouldn’t be particularly troublesome overall, and it has the advantage of cheap parts and Ford’s numerous local dealerships.

It’s a shame that it comes with a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty when Hyundai offers a five-year warranty and Kia offers seven years of cover, but you can extend the warranty to four years and 80,000 miles, or five years and 100,000 miles for a reasonable extra cost.

Ford Focus Estate

Ford Focus estate safety and security

Every Focus Estate comes with stability control, hill-start assist (which stops the car from rolling backwards when pulling away on an incline) and seven airbags, including one for the driver’s knees. It also has a system that distributes the engine’s power to the front wheel with the most traction, helping to reduce any possible wheelspin through corners.

Blindspot monitoring is optional on most trims, while you can add adaptive cruise control and lane-departure warning systems to high-end versions. You’ll also have to pay extra for automatic emergency city braking on all but Titanium and Titanium X models. The Focus Estate gets four stars here because some rivals, including the VW Golf Estate, offer emergency city braking as standard on all models.

It should be safe in an accident, however. While the Focus Estate has not been crash tested by Euro NCAP, the hatchback version has. That got the maximum five stars overall in its 2012 test, with impressive scores of 92% for adult occupant protection, 82% for child occupant protection, and 72% for pedestrian protection; we’d expect this estate version to perform similarly well. An engine immobiliser and an alarm are fitted to all Focus Estates. Security experts Thatcham rated the car as competitive within its class for security, awarding it five out of five for resisting being stolen, and four out of five for resisting being broken into.

Ford Focus Estate
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Verdict

The sweetest-handling small estate, but not the most practical

  • Sweet handling
  • Refined petrol engines and strong diesels
  • Competitive company car costs
  • Big discounts and tempting finance offers
  • Not as spacious as some rivals
  • Average interior quality
  • Resale values are comparatively low
  • 1.0 petrol engines’ real-world fuel economy
There are 6 trims available for the Focus estate. Click to see details.See all versions
Style
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Fuel Petrol, Diesel
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£17,687
Average Saving £1,363
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Zetec
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Fuel Petrol, Diesel
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£18,919
Average Saving £1,461
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Titanium
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Fuel Petrol, Diesel
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£21,006
Average Saving £1,624
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ST-Line
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£21,026
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Titanium X
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Fuel Petrol, Diesel
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£22,185
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ST-Line X
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Fuel Petrol, Diesel
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£23,344
Average Saving £1,806
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