What used Ford Focus hatchback will I get for my budget?
You certainly won’t be stuck for choice when it comes to finding a Focus, but you will need at least £3000 if your heart is set on a third-generation model. For this kind of money, you’ll get a 1.6-litre TDCi diesel with plenty of miles on the clock. Petrol cars with a 1.6-litre engine cost from about £4000 – that price increase primarily because they won’t have covered nearly as many miles.
Increasing your budget to £5000 will get you into a 1.0-litre Ecoboost or a 1.6-litre TDCi with fewer than 60,000 miles on the clock, while facelifted (post-2014) cars cost from £6500.
The sporty ST model wasn’t introduced to the third-generation Focus until 2015, so don’t expect to find a used example for significantly less than £15,000, or an RS for less than £22,000.
How much does it cost to run a Ford Focus hatchback?
Pre-facelift cars were at their most efficient as a 1.6-litre TDCi Econetic, from which you can expect 55mpg (the official claimed figure was actually more than 80mpg), but it’s worth noting that non-Econetic models are vastly more common and almost as frugal in everyday driving.
Opt for a more powerful 2.0-litre diesel and fuel economy drops to about 50mpg in normal driving, with the optional Powershift automatic gearbox further denting that figure by as much as 5mpg.
Petrol engines range from a 1.0-litre through to a 1.6-litre either with or without a turbocharger (the former was intended to offer a more fuel efficient alternative to a naturally aspirated 2.0-litre). In everyday use you can expect between 35-45mpg from these engines, with the 1.0-litre being at the higher end of the scale, as well as being eligible for free road tax in its lowest power output guise. In fact, unless you opt for a 1.6-litre petrol Focus or one of the high-performance versions, you’re unlikely to need to pay more than £30 per year in tax, as long as they were registered before the tax changes that came into effect from April 2017.
The post-2014 facelift 1.5-litre engines resulted in improved economy in official tests, but in normal driving it's actually only the diesel that is more fuel efficient than its predecessor.
Other running costs are also low, thanks to Ford offering competitive servicing prices and parts being in plentiful supply. Ford offers a number of different servicing plans for older cars, allowing payments by direct debit. Cars over three years of age will qualify for Ford’s Motorcraft servicing regime, under which an annual service at a Ford dealer will cost £149. You'll pay even less at an independent Ford specialist.