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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
40,795 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2001 Ford Focus electrical problems

electrical problem

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2001 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 1 of 7)

problem #129

Jan 032014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 150,000 miles


Ignition switch on the vehicle is completely locked up and will not turn. My wife is a diabetic and has numerous health complications due to her diabetes. If we were out and became stranded it could have cost us her life. I am disappointed with Ford for not fixing this issue.

- Stanley, NC, USA

problem #128

Dec 052007


  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Ford Focus. When the contact attempted to start the vehicle, the key became stuck in the ignition. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and they stated that the ignition switch needed to be replaced. Prior to the failure, the contact noticed that the key would occasionaly become stuck in the ignition, but could be removed. The current mileage was 97,000 and failure mileage was 75,000.

- Lenoir, NC, USA

problem #127

Jan 062009


  • 102,200 miles
2001 Ford Focus ignition switch not turning when trying to start vehicle. My started early morning after work -20 outside. Lucky I was home. Googled and somebody said hit it with hammer and it will turn or replace new ignition switch. Hit it many times and now it got worse. Fix is not cheap and it is a very common complaints from many people all over the country. This is a safety issue due to it could happen while driving or in severe weather condition or safety evacuation that would not be possible if you can't start your vehicle. Can somebody do something about this because Ford is getting away with negligence or I suppose will just bail them out so they can keep ripping people off with expensive vehicles and faulty equipments. Is that how this works. Screw the tax payers and consumers who keep this country productive. Ford needs to be responsible for their products and their commitments to their customers. Please recall this defect.

- Watseka, IL, USA

problem #126

Nov 152007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 170,000 miles


Ignition switch seizing, unable to start vehicle. 2001 Ford Focus wagon. Has happened, and been replaced 2 times. I understand this has happened to thousands of Ford owners, yet Ford refuses to acknowledge it as they do not see it as a 'safety issue'. the second time it happened to me, it was around 11pm on a Friday night, on a small side road near mack and woodward, downtown detroit. There's no way in hell anyone can convince me my safety was not in jeopardy because of this faulty part!

- Windsor, 00, USA

problem #125

Feb 022008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,007 miles
Key will not turn...can't start car..key tumbler defective.

- Roseneath, 00, USA

problem #124

Nov 092007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles
I bought my 2001 Ford Focus in April 2007 from a used car dealership. One day a couple of months ago I went into a store and when I came out my key would not go into the ignition and the steering wheel was locked. Fortunately I grabbed a passerby to help me and he was able to get the key into the ignition and I was able to drive the car. Then a few days ago I got home from work one night, parked my car, and went inside. Next morning when I tried to leave for work the key would not go into the ignition and the wheel was locked again. After an hour of trying to get the key in, I had to call a mechanic to tow the car to the shop and get it repaired. It cost me $400.

- Prospect Heights, IL, USA

problem #123

Nov 092007


  • miles


Ignition switch- my key won't enter the ignition. I have read hundreds of complaints online about this defective part. Ford needs to issue a recall on this faulty part.

- Malibu, CA, USA

problem #122

Oct 072007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles
2001 Ford Focus ZX3 ignition failure the key gets stuck in the ignition and does not turn and the car I guess is known for it and the company does nothing about the problem the customer has to pay for the new ignition every time it happens and the car is known for doing this.

- Milford, NH, USA

problem #121

Jul 172007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,290 miles
I had to have my ignition switch replaced because the key would not turn in the ignition. The mechanic indicated that this is a common problem with the 2001 Focus.

- Princeton, WV, USA

problem #120

Jul 152007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 53,000 miles
The contact owns a 2001 Ford Focus. The contact was unable to turn the key and unlock the steering wheel when he attempted to start the vehicle. The dealer stated that the ignition cylinder needed to be replaced. As of July 16, 2007, the vehicle has not been repaired. The current and failure mileages were 53,000. Updated 09/05/07

- Spokane, WA, USA

problem #119

Jul 092007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


My wife owns a 2001 Ford Focus LX, we have been having intermittent ignition problem with this car for months where the key did not turn the ignition. I called Ford service, and they advised to replace the ignition which will cost between $380 and $480. I could not afford this, , and lost time at work to go and mess with the ignition. I had to wiggle it back and forth, sometimes taking me 2 hours, to get the key to turn. I read forums on the internet that many people had the same problem. Why could not Ford reimburse any cost or do this for cheaper then the amount I was quoted. The cars will sit in the driveway until I could get enough money for repairs. The car wont even turn now even after wiggling it back and forth, so I may have to get the car towed to the dealership.

- New Carrollton, MD, USA

problem #118

Jun 242007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 75,000 miles
Ford Focus ignition key will not insert. This is a safety problem because I am stranded with an immobile car.

- Grosse Pointe Park, MI, USA

problem #117

Mar 262007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
My ignition and steering wheel locked when I was trying to leave work. After having the car towed to a garage, I found out it is going to cost me about $400 to replace the ignition switch. My problem is the gentleman who towed my car told me this was the third Focus he towed this week for the same problem. The mechanic told me that this is a common occurrence in focuse's. I worked really hard to pay for the car and expect better service from Ford. If this a common occurrence, I feel it should be a recall.

- Framingham, MA, USA

problem #116

Jan 022007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles
- the contact stated that ignition will not turn with the key. This happened four times, and shetook the vehicle to the dealership on 1-3-07. The contact stated that the weather was not a factor, and she will have the repair order from the work done.

- Danville, VA, USA

problem #115

Dec 102006


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
When I tried to start my 2001 Ford Focus this morning to return home, the ignition locked. I had this problem fixed 2ce before while under warranty. It is no longer under warranty. When I went on the web for info I spent hrs reading of all the other consumers with the same problem and that Ford has done nothing to solve this. It was suggested I write to this site.

- Rockwell, NC, USA

problem #114

Dec 062006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 41,000 miles
2001 Ford Focus: Ignition key will not turn after insertion, so the car won't start. Jamming key hard into column and maybe rocking the steering wheel eventually enables the key to turn and start the vehicle. Intermittent, but now becoming more frequent. Last time it took 40 minutes to start car - could be personal danger.

- St. Charles, MO, USA

problem #113

Oct 242001

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,610 miles
Ford Focus year 2001 - the ignition has locked up twice. Had aaa locksmith make a new key that worked better- old key you have to hit with force to make it work. Now it turns but won't start.

- Layton, UT, USA

problem #112

Oct 172006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles
Ignition lock failure. Key will not turn in ignition.

- Grand Forks, ND, USA

problem #111

Oct 152006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles
: the contact stated while attempting to start the vehicle, the key would not turn the ignition switch. A locksmith was called and the ignition switch was replaced. The dealer was not alerted.

- North Plainfield, NJ, USA

problem #110

Oct 032006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,000 miles
Ignition switch deteriorated resulting in a failure; there were no prior indications of the imminency of this failure. Ignition subsequently completely failed to turn. Entire ignition switch system replaced. The keys will be the next to fail, as they are wearing down in a much more substantial manner than I have ever seen an automobile key deteriorate.

- Dekalb, IL, USA

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