Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
29,613 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.

2004 Ford Focus transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #7

Apr 142010

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


2004 Ford Focus. Consumer states transmission gave out with a mileage under 20,000. Consumer requests reimbursement. In July 2009, the vehicle needed a new battery. About a week after the new battery was installed, periodically the cluster lights would make a sound and the lights would blink on and off. It would happen twice in a matter of seconds, but did not happen everyday. The consumer followed instruction on what to do. The situation was a little better, but the cluster blinking, etc still occurred periodically. A week later, as the consumer backed out of her driveway, there were sounds coming from the vehicle and they seemed to get worse. The consumer had the vehicle towed to a transmission shop. Upon inspection, the transmission plate which was located under the engine showed transmission fluid an D excessive amounts of metal fillings. The mechanic showed the consumer the damaged parts where the teeth in the gears were not working properly which caused the metal fillings in the transmission plate.

- Westbrook, ME, USA

problem #6

Aug 192009


  • 83,000 miles
On 8/19/09, I was driving my 2004 Ford Focus and all of a sudden while I was driving, it felt like pressure (or having to force car to go) with my foot on gas pedal. After I eased my foot off gas pedal, car would switch in to gear. This same pattern of pressure and easing foot off gas pedal so that car would go into gear happened each time I would make a stop. Car is currently at sheehy Ford dealership and I have been told that the transmission has failed with 2nd and 4th gear not working & that I could not drive car home until transmission is replaced because also transmission is ready to fall out of car due to weak support is holding transmission in place. Car has approx only 83,000 miles.

- Richmond, VA, USA

problem #5

Nov 042007


  • 80,000 miles
On acceleration from stop car tacks out to 6 and transmission revs then shifts very hard, called Ford and they told me it was they way I drive my car. Said transmission learns how to shift that way, car still not repaired.

- Vacaville, CA, USA

problem #4

Apr 012006


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


2004 Focus belt tensioner broke and battery failed. The front door had to be aligned and the door seal was replaced. The throttle cable had to be re-routed due to the cable binding. The front wheel bearings were replaced. The left rear motor assembly was replaced, the 3rd brake light lens and right side cv axle was replaced. The transmission started shifting erratically. The consumer attempted to make a turn, and the transmission would shift from 1st to 2nd gear until the engine revved up past 6000 RPM. The consumer was told there was a problem with the servo pistons. The transmission was eventually repaired. The battery failed 5 times.

- Gun Barrel City, TX, USA

problem #3

Oct 302005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,812 miles
I was on my way home and I started to here a noise from the front end. Then it felt like my car was stopping while I was accelerating. When I put it in reverse my front tires locked. I put it in neutral to try to push it back put it would not move. I had my kids in the car and I was glad we were not in traffic. I took it to a dealer and they are taking their time and haven't looked at yet. I pay 334. A month and my car is a death trap. I have nothing to drive and I cant afford to keep up a rental car. 2004 Ford Focus.

- Portsmouth, VA, USA

problem #2

Feb 162005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 14,478 miles
Car was purchased new 6/15/04 with 317 miles. There has been over $1500 worth of factory work done on this vehicle from brake pads, rotors, sensor being replaced on transmission. Now the car is constantly jerking when accelerating at 20 mph and stalling. On February 16th, my car wouldn't start and was jerking. I had it towed to my home. On Friday, February 18th the radio came on without the key being placed in the ignition. I have filed the lemon law and suggest others do it as well if there problems aren't resolved. I was told my car has an electrical shortage, but don't want it back. I have a small child and am afraid something terrible will happen.

- Fayetteville, GA, USA

problem #1

Apr 072004

Focus Diesel

  • miles
Vehicle was driven less than seventy miles after being released from the manufacturer. Within that time, upon merging onto the highway, transmission failed. Transmission started slipping with engine revving to 3000 rpms, and vehicle slowly accelerated onto the highway. Within a few seconds the transmission engaged, but only in the first gear. This entire incident occurred after the manufacturer had held the vehicle because of a quality control issue. The dealership wanted to replace the entire transmission.

- Hilton Head Island, SC, USA

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