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10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,949 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.

2003 Ford Focus electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 8 of 14)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #121

Mar 032008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 139,382 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. The contact attempted to start the vehicle, but was unsuccessful. She called a mechanic and the ignition was replaced. The current mileage was 140,030 and failure mileage was 139,382. Updated 04/22/08.

- Coldwater, MI, USA

problem #120

Mar 142008

Focus 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The key ignition is locked and won't turn on the car.

- Baldwin Park, CA, USA

problem #119

Feb 112008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. In an attempt to drive the vehicle, the contact placed her key in the ignition and it would not turn. The vehicle had to be towed to a mechanic and they replaced the entire ignition. The VIN was unknown. The current and failure mileages were 90,000.

- Mt. Clair, PA, USA

problem #118

Jan 272007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,779 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Defect in the key ignition; key would get stuck and car would not turn on at all. Your would not be able to turn on the car at all. The keys would be $100 each and they had to be program. Several repairs finally had to replace the hold ignition for a total of $411.62. This was a defect on the Ford companies part; did a small survey and everyone with Ford vehicles or Ford focuses had the same problem; but had to pay of their pocket for the repairs when their warranty ran out. I believe Ford owes me for the repair. The doors also get stuck and won't open.

- Kingsville, TX, USA

problem #117

Jan 202008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,100 miles
The ignition on my 2003 Ford Focus keeps seizing up. The only way to get the key to turn is to tap it with a hammer. I ran a google search for Ford Focus steering lock and found thousands of complaints for this same problem. Many of which said that Ford does not recognize a problem and charged them for the repair. I have not taken the car in for service yet and am reluctant to waste my time with the dealer given the complaints I see and the fact I could have it done cheaper elsewhere. Ford needs to recognize this and recall or reimburse. This is a dangerous situation in cold weather. From what I understand the ignition part was redesigned in 2005 and now functions properly.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #116

Jan 202008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles
Ignition switch won't turn. It's like the key is from the wrong car or something. I was stuck in 5 degree weather while waiting for a tow-truck driver to take my car to the dealership, which was closed anyway. The two-truck driver told me that he's personally seen about a hundred focuses (foci?) with the same problem, and that they are "notorious" among the tow-truck drivers for this problem. He was able to get the key to turn, and I was able to get home, but now I have looked on the web and seen that there are hundreds or thousands of owners with the same exact problem. There is a class-action lawsuit in California over it.

- Columbus, OH, USA

problem #115

Jan 152008

Focus 4-cyl

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I am writing because I believe that there should be a recall for my car due to many complaints with the same problem with my car. My wife was shopping and when she went to start the car the steering wheel was locked and the key would not turn. We ended up having to have the car towed to our home. We went online and researched and saw that many people with the same car and year that we have has the same problem. Our car is a 2003 Ford Focus and its an ignition lock problem. The average repair is between $300 - $500. I believe that it is a huge safety issue as my wife was stranded with our 7 week old and 4 year old in very cold weather with no way to start the car for any heat. Its dangerous and the complaints are many. All you have to do is google it and you can see. I contacted Ford to see if they will take care of the issue and they are supposed to get back to me by tomorrow at 2 to let me know. I believe that they should as again they know that this is a very common problem with this vehicle and have yet to ever issue a recall for it. Thank you.

- Downingtown, PA, USA

problem #114

Jan 152008

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,600 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. While attempting to start the vehicle, it would not unlock or allow her to start the vehicle. A professional stated that the ignition cylinder does not unlock, which prevented the vehicle from starting. The vehicle is currently being repaired. He called the manufacturer and is waiting for a response. The current and failure mileages were 60,600.

- Dowingtown, PA, USA

problem #113

May 012006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the key has a tendency to stick inside the ignition when starting the vehicle. This prevents the ignition from turning. An authorized Ford dealer recommended that she take a hammer and gently tap the key when inserted into the ignition in an attempt to lodge it out. The contact heeded the advice and the remedy worked temporarily. After a few weeks, the failure worsened and currently occurs three times per week. The steering column sticks whenever the vehicle is parked on a flat road surface with the steering wheel turned upright. The contact stated that is was difficult to turn the steering column. Ford stated that nothing could be done. The powertrain was unknown. The failure mileage was 120 and current mileage was 67,000.

- Dunkinsville, TX, USA

problem #112

Dec 272007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,810 miles
I am having problem with my ignition. The key does not turn at all. The car has less than 50,000 miles but its already causing problem.

- Pocatello, ID, USA

problem #111

Dec 232007

Focus

  • miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Over the past two years, we have had recurring challenges associated with removing the ignition key from the ignition cylinder/tumbler on our 2003 Ford Focus ZX3. On December 23, 2007, I was no longer able to remove the key after hours of trying to jiggle or cajole the key and/or cylinder. I was forced to call for a tow truck. And I was without a primary car over christmas. The Ford dealer has informed me that this is "a well known problem." The "resolution" was replacement of the part and a substantial service charge.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #110

Dec 222007

Focus

  • miles
Key fails to turn in ignition in 2003 Ford Focus.

- Mountain View, CA, USA

problem #109

Dec 182007

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have a 2003 Ford Focus. I have the common complaint that my ignition needed to be replaced. The wheel became locked and I was unable to turn the key. I have found countless stories similar to mine on the internet and it's so common that the Ford dealer and all the locksmiths that I have talked to in the last two days have known exactly what I was talking about. This problem needs to be addressed. Thank you.

- Alexandria, LA, USA

problem #108

Dec 122007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 55,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. The ignition switch locked up constantly and the contact can no longer drive the vehicle because the steering cannot be unlocked. The dealer stated that the ignition cylinder needed to be replaced at the cost of $375. The part is not under warranty and there is no recall. The current mileage was 57,000 and failure mileage was 55,000.

- Springvalley, CA, USA

problem #107

Dec 122007

Focus

  • miles
The ignition lock has locked itself and as a result we have not been able to turn the vehicle on. From what I've gathered on the internet it was not an isolated incident. I talked to one of the local repair shops and was told it was cost around $500 to have the part replaced.

- Fremont, CA, USA

problem #106

Dec 072007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
My 2003 Ford Focus, left me sitting on a Friday evening because the ignition key cylinder would not allow me to turn the key. Not only was the ignition key cylinder locked, but so was the gear shift and the steering wheel. I couldn't move the vehicle at all. It was dark and I was left sitting with one of my two children. I had to call for a ride, get the car towed and then pay to get it fixed. All along, Ford knew that this was, as they stated on their website, "a defect". obviously this is an ongoing problem for the Ford Focus. I have a friend who also had this problem. It's a issue that needs to be faced and probably be considered for recall, in my opinion. I feel that paying for this "defect" is unacceptable. I believe that Ford should have this on recall and take care of replacing the ignition lock cylinder for it's customers!

- Camp Hill, PA, USA

problem #105

Nov 212007

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have had a few prior problems getting my key to turn in my ignition, which I was eventually able to fix myself. Last night however, I was unable to get my key to turn in the ignition. I was left stranded in a less than ideal neighborhood after 30 minutes of trying to start my car. This ignition lock problem has happened the eve before thanksgiving which leaves me without a car on a holiday weekend.

- Gettysburg, PA, USA

problem #104

Nov 122007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,256 miles
When I put my key into my car it will not turn. While this may not be an "obvious" safety risk, it can lead to serious problems if you are stranded somewhere. Ford knows about this problem with Focus, yet has done nothing to correct it. I ended up stranded for over an hour as I waited for someone to pick me up, finally I banged the key out of frustration and I was able to turn it. This is a serious safety matter to me, as I am a single woman. Ford needs to take responsibility and recall their defective ignition cylinders. I will now have to spend at least $400 to fix this, and it's something that there is no guarantee won't happen in the future, as it will be replaced with the same defective mechanism.

- Tualatin, OR, USA

problem #103

Nov 082007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,194 miles
I am currently leasing a Ford Focus ZX5, I've been driving this car without any problems for just over 6 months. After stopping at the grocery store with my 17 month old daughter, my key doesn't turn in the ignition!! not only is this frustrating it is dangerous. My daughter was crying from the cold that night and I had to walk home with her in my arms!! so in conclusion I feel that the fact that the ignition cylinder can go at any time without warning is a definite and unnecessary risk to safety. My daughter is now sick because of this!

- Liverpool, NY, USA

problem #102

Oct 082007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Ford Focus. When attempting to start the vehicle, the ignition switch failed. It took the contact approximately 20 attempts to start the vehicle. The ignition cylinder is currently being repaired by a local mechanic. The contact filed a complaint with the manufacturer. The current and failure mileages were 59,000. Updated 03/14/08.

- Wichitasalls, TX, USA

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