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.

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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
67,798 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.

2005 Ford Focus drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2005 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #18

Dec 012015


  • miles


Bought the car for my mother it had 91,000 miles on it and ran fine. It now has 106,000 miles on it and the automatic transmission has failed with a broken intermediate band, looked up the problem and found lots of complaints about the same problem again and again. It will show up as a shift solenoid "D" problem but if you fix it, it will not help. The band is broken and must be replaced. Car would not shift smoothly from 2 - 4 gear.

- Mooresville, NC, USA

problem #17

Jun 062005

Focus 4-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
Car surges when braking usually under 5 to 10 mph. Transmission does not want to gear down. Especially when braking fast. Problem not constant. Talked to dealer several times, they said they could not recreate. When it happens you have stand on brake or put in neutral to stop forward surge.

- Mokena, IL, USA

problem #16

Jun 062011

Focus 4-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
So idk every [xxx] year! for the last few years! it goes good then she starts acting funny boom battery light comes on. I use the voltmeter and everything's fine full charge same with the alternator. A week or so passed then the starter went out replaced 7/3/13!! wtf! fried put a new one in. Now my[xxx] clutch feels different don't know what it's not slipping but it's really smooth.2 days go by and boom acts like the battery is dead..nope take key out get voltmeter it's at 12.5 so I try again seems ok doesn't turn over. Again turn key all lights on seems ok nothing.... ok 1 more turn key struggles like starter then lights flicker dash wacks out boom dead nothing!!!!! get out still 12.5volts. I don't know try 1 more time I pumped the clutch ad it hesitated to turn over and boom it works!!!! get home. Turn it off all is well acts like nothing is wrong! 4 to 6 days again this time it did it 2 him just's the kicker!!!!! it's fine fully charged all lights ok all volts ok he pulls out ( ha ha pulls out!) then she idles irregularly like a loop higher loop get it home and keeps looping. So I remember this from like 5 yrs ago it was something with the maf or ecg I believe so I look for answers.... now he goes out 4 hrs later nothing dead won't turn over won't do nothing!!!!! I hate this car!!!!! I swear I will find the [xxx] problem to this [xxx]!!!!! I can't believe this [xxx] car! she was so good now she's a lil [xxx]! I know it's something stupid as [xxx] and watch just like last year in August the [xxx[ clutch is going to go out again! I loved this car but from reading constantly I've decided this is a serious Ford issue!!!! I have spent thousands on this! if I didn't have lifetime warranties on the alternator etc I could only imagine the cost!! through all this horror I've also had to replace O2 sensors maf sensor all engine mounts 3 times!!! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #15

Jun 012005

Focus 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles


When braking coming up to stop light or stop sign usually under 15 mph transmission does not gear down and seems to surge. Happens randomly. You have to almost stand on brakes and shift to neutral. Surge may last approx 5 seconds. Varies depending on speed your braking from. In the beginning talked to Ford dealer and was told they could not duplicate. Had a Ford escort for my son in mid 80's and he experienced a similar problem. Vehicle now has approximately 72000 miles and seems to getting worse. I believe it's been an ongoing problems for years and not acknowledged. I would be very surprised if many others have not had the same experience.

- Mokena, IL, USA

problem #14

Dec 092013


  • 60,000 miles
I purchased this car when it was only a year old and it has been a nightmare. First, all the door handles broke off making it impossible to get in and out of the car. Second, the accelerator stuck almost causing an accident and now the transmission went out while I was going through a busy intersection. Buyer beware, this car is not only junk but dangerous!!!

- Wheelersburg, OH, USA

problem #13

Jul 162013

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,600 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the key became stuck in the ignition. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnosis and the contact was informed that the gear shifter would need to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 83,600.... updated 08/19/13 the shifter was replaced on July 30, 2013

- Duncanville, AL, USA

problem #12

Jun 122012


  • 115,000 miles


Beginning last year, there have been multiple occasions when I was decelerating and the entire front end of the car would begin to vibrate and the steering would become difficult to handle. Took the car to an independent repair shop, they could not duplicate the problem, asked me to make note of road conditions, etc. Tires replaced sometime in the past year. Alignment performed within past two months. Tires are wearing in diagonal pairs oddly. Blew fuse which operated the automatic safety locks, cruise control and the locking control on taking the car out of park. Called Ford dealership, was told to pop small piece of plastic off the shifter deck and stick a screw driver in to be able to shift out of park. Was also told this could be a big problem and to bring it in. After charging me $130 to "diagnose" the problem, they then charged me $10 to replace the fuse, could find no reason for it to have blown. Then told me my transmission fluid needed to be replaced. Too many dollars later, I left the dealership. Two weeks later, fuse blew again. Took to independent garage, $ 0.95 for the fuse and $30 to try and figure out why it was blowing out, unsuccessfully. The shimmy in the front end was getting worse and I was debating dealership or independent, decision was removed from my hands when the front of the car began swerving toward traffic in rush hour at 45mph on Monday night 6/24/13. Suddenly, there was a loud noise and I managed to wrench the steering wheel to the right and hit a curb instead of oncoming traffic. Friend behind me witnessed incident and said the car looked like it jumped sideways. Both right tires off rims, shredded, unknown further damage at this point as the shop hasn't had a chance to make an assessment. My insurance company is already considering totaling the car out. It has 128000 miles or so. I feel like I have sideways whiplash. No airbag depl.

- Madison, WI, USA

problem #11

Jun 062013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, the vehicle would not accelerate. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnosis. The mechanic stated that the transmission would have to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 90,000.

- Beloit , WI, USA

problem #10

May 122013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 97,651 miles
Key stuck in ignition. The column was not locked. On the gear shift there is a plastic sleeve. I put the gear shift in park and slid my hand below the knob and pulled the sleeve up and the key comes out.

- Roswell, GA, USA

problem #9

Feb 012013


  • 94,000 miles
All I can say is this car has been a problem. The car started this hard starting issue a while ago when I contacted Ford they told me this was normal I had the car for a few years and all of a sudden this sound when starting will come from the trunk and take at least 5 cranks to start and this is normal. As of this week I was driving on I-95 on my way to work at approximately 60 mph. When all of a sudden my car starting revving as if it was in neutral and I couldn't accelerate once off the highway the car worked fine. After work on my way home the same thing happen but while I was on the entrance ramp I was able to get up to 35mph and all of a sudden it was in neutral I was almost hit from behind. My car only has 94000 miles on it and it needs a transmission. I bought this car in 2008 with 49,000. And for the past two years this car has been nothing more than a problem. I will never own or recommend a Ford to anyone.

- Stony Point , NY, USA

problem #8

Sep 202012


  • 68,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus wagon. The contact stated that while driving 65 mph, he depressed the accelerator pedal but the vehicle failed to accelerate properly. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who diagnosed that the solenoid in the transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was repaired. The failure and current mileage was 68,000.

- Kettering, OH, USA

problem #7

Sep 062011


  • 153,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that while driving approximately 10 mph, a loud noise emitted from the front end of the vehicle. The contact was able to continue to drive. The failure occurred whenever the transmission shifted in the first, second or third gear. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who stated the failure could possibly be related to front end bearings or axle. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 153,000.

- Central, SC, USA

problem #6

Mar 082012


  • 134,105 miles
After starting the car when it has set a few hours the overdrive off light is flashes yellow, odometer just shows dashes, and speedometer dosent work. Car still operates but shifts gears hard, when it reaches the speed for door to lock everything starts working. I have had multiple problems with the engine mgmt fuse, and have had 3 altenators changed out in the last 2 years. Also I had a problem with key not coming out of ignition and found out that a peice of the shifter had broke off and slid down and kept it from going all the way into park, after removing part I have had no problem with the key. Also engine light stays on was told by auto zone it was vaccum system took it to Ford place they said it was motor mounts, they were replaced 20,000 miles ago and it still hasnt helped.

- Temple, GA, USA

problem #5

Nov 062007


  • 43,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. While driving approximately 35 mph, the transmission began to hesitate and shift gears erratically with a loud bang. The vehicle was taken to both the dealer and independent mechanic for diagnosis. The technicians informed the transmission exhibited internal damages and would require replacement. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 43,000.

- St. Louis , MO, USA

problem #4

Sep 212010


  • 43,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the transmission would not shift into second or third gear. The vehicle was taken to a mechanic who inspected the failure and advised that the shift solenoid and transmission needed to be replaced. The dealer was notified of the failure who informed her to bring the vehicle in and they will perform a full diagnostic test at her expense. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 43,000.

- St Louis, MO, USA

problem #3

Jan 152009


  • 66,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Ford Focus. The contact was driving 35 mph when the vehicle became resistance to acceleration attempts. The vehicle was taken to a dealer who was unable to diagnose the failure. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure and the vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 66,000.

- Bothell , WA, USA

problem #2

Sep 022010


  • 62,000 miles
Automatic transmission was in drive and under way when rpms raced up. It seemed to be out of gear. Transmission indicated it was in drive. I thought that the od gear had malfunctioned. After disengaging the od the vehicle seemed to be locked in 2nd gear (as engine RPM & sound indicated). After taking it to the repair shop it was determined the shift solenoids were ok & it required the transmission to be torn apart for inspection. Mazda provides the automatic to Ford. The transmission should not fail at this mileage. According to the repair shop it was the 4th low mileage vehicle in a week requiring a complete rebuild of the transmission.

- Newnan, GA, USA

problem #1

Sep 152005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 19,000 miles
There was shaking in the front of my car...I finally went to the dealership where I bought my 2005 Ford Focus and when they checked it out, they said that they would have to replace the right front axle assembly....then in Nov. 2005 I moved to sylva, and have been to andy shaw Ford 3 or 4 different times for them to check the shaking in the front of my car, twice to be told that my tires were out of balance, and that nothing else was found at the time...the first couple times I went there, I was told that my tires were out of balance, and they charged me for balancing my tires...which this was not the problem, nor did it fix the problem...around the third time I went to the dealership in sylva, they did a test drive with me in the car and was told by two representatives of the dealership that nothing was wrong with my car and that it rode like any other Ford Focus...I purchased 4 new tires for my car at a local tire dealer this past Saturday, and today I went to an auto repair shop and told them what was happening with my car, and they put my car up on a lift, and started my car and gave it the gas so that my two front tires would spin, and the driver's front side tire was not spinning right, but the other front tire was spinning smoothly...the fellow told me that it could be my wheel, or my tire, and I told him that I had just purchased new tires...then I went back to where I bought my new tires, and ask them would they put the driver's front tire on the new wheel that I had in my car and they did and I test drove the car, and the problem was not fixed...I talked to a Ford certified mechanic that has his own shop and was told that it could be the tie rod, he went on to tell me that someone else had came to his shop with the same problem, same type of car, same year, and all... I have been to the Ford dealership in salisbury, nc where I bought my car, as well have made several trips to the Ford dealership here in sylva to be told that my tires were out of balance.

- Sylva, NC, USA

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