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.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
47,595 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.

2009 Ford Focus engine problems

engine problem

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2009 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #15

Jul 112016


  • 100,000 miles


Driving on highway in rush hour traffic at 65 miles an hour when suddenly losing throttle control down to 35 miles an hour the gas pedal would not respond. Yellow wrench light and wavy car warning lights appeared. Coasted to side of the road and sat for 10 minutes. Started car and tested pedal. Eased back on freeway. Scared to drive this car.

- Livonia, MI, USA

problem #14

Sep 122015


  • miles
The car had been running perfect then after a motor mount was replaced the car started then went dead immediately. The car will turn over but it isn't firing right now it gave no warning. The computer read a throttle actuator trouble code and that's all. The car will keep turning over after I release the key it has not done this before now we had some trouble with the ignition locking up and we have to turn it really hard to start get the key in the starting position. The ignition system is one of the problems and the throttle body will update when I find out more.

- Gilbertown, AL, USA

problem #13

Jun 102015


  • 120,000 miles
Freeway driving at 70 mph the indicator light for the throttle body/transmission light up and the car went into limp home mode. Very dangerous at these speeds. Same problem as the Ford escape that were under the warranty extention

- Bowling Green, OH, USA

problem #12

Apr 012015


  • 57,000 miles


On cold start RPM's fluctuate several hundred RPM's. brought to dealership but no codes were present. Tech suspected dirty throttle body. Part not under warranty because no codes when scanned. Problem continues especially on cold start but occasionally while in drive at a stop.

- Norton, MA, USA

problem #11

Nov 102010


  • 2,011 miles
I purchased my vehicle in 2010, at the time the vehicle had 37,000 miles. A less than a month later the transmission failed. It would not move in any gear, when I placed my foot on the gas it would not move but then it jolted with great force. It also grinds really hard when you're shifting gears. I called the dealer and they agreed to fix the vehicle. I was told that a new transmission was put in the car. About a year later the same problem with the transmission happened. The car was stopped and would not move in any gear. I took it to Ford again and they said a bolt was loose and they fixed it. A few days later the same problem I took it back to Ford and they found that there were metal shavings in the transmission. Yesterday my wrench light came on and my transmission is doing the same thing it did the first two times. Since purchasing the vehicle a little over 5 years ago I have put less 35,000 miles on this car. It should not be having transmission issues. The transmission is the only problem I've had and continue to have with this vehicle.I I am very concerned about this issue and do not feel safe driving my vehicle. I do not understand why this issue keeps happening.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #10

Dec 192013


  • 30,000 miles
The car was on the interstate traveling at 55 mph ; the engine stalled and restarted, when existing to see whether it would gain speed, the car slipped out of gear. It went into reverse, backing up. After trying to correct it. The car sped up almost causing a major accident, the car restarted with the shift out of drive, I drove the car three blocks to my home. I left the car wherever it stopped, the next day, I tried to drive it; the car placed in drive went in reverse backing up. I left it there and had wrecker company to take it to a transmission shop on union avenue. They inspected the car and said it would take $2,0000 to get the transmission repaired. Since, the car was under engine warranty from Acura dealers of memphis, I had the wrecking company to take the car back to the dealership. They sold me a 2013 Toyota corolla which is experiencing the same problem. Now, I have another car from the sane dealership which apparently sells used cars with transmission problems.

- Memphis, TN, USA

problem #9

Apr 292014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 26,140 miles


I have a 2009 Ford Focus. When turning on the vehicle one morning a wrench light was on and pressing on the gas there was no acceleration. When taking it to mechanic I was told it was the P2111 and the throttle cap was stuck open. This is a known Ford problem and the escape had them recalled already. The car only has 26,000 miles on it and was a 3 year warranty unfortunately not covered.

- Darien, IL, USA

problem #8

Apr 132011


  • 15,000 miles
Wrench light came on when starting...and went off..gradually came on and stayed on until I turned off engine and restarted...bob ridings Ford here in Decatur said they could not check it unless the wrench light stayed on...which never happened...gradually the light would come on when car was being driven...and stalled down at a place I could not get off road to restart...luckily not in heavy traffic which could have caused an accident. Next the wrench light went off and the engine light came on...before I could get it to the garage to be checked, all the lights went off...said palmer from palmer tire and auto checked it and got one code which he tried to get Ford to help him with..before he could hear back (if ever he would have) I took it to bob ridings in taylorville (I had bad experience with one in Decatur)and they called said to get his diagnosis..and discussed the fact that both had replaced throttle control on other Focus cars which Ford motor did not recommend doing! this cost me $569.10 which I believe would have been under warranty if it had been repaired in 2011; and this should have been a recall as it is a dangerous condition when driving in traffic., I think Ford owes me...and probably others...and is a problem warranting a recall! I guessed at mileage and time but know this problem occurred the year after I bought the car and it only had 9000 miles on it when I purchased it...making it have around 15,000 when problem began.

- Decatur, IL, USA

problem #7

Aug 012013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
Exactly as described in other entries on this site, and similar to the problems described in the nytimes today about GM cars (although mine is a Ford- probably the same faulty component is in both GM and Ford). Numerous times and at various speeds, including on the highway, the car will inexplicably "stall out"- the engine completely shuts off and no longer accelerates. First time was with my wife driving with our babies on the highway. She was terrified, and did a heroic job of getting over to the shoulder. She turned the key off and then was able to restart the car. A few weeks later it happened to me on a country road- without any warning, the car completely shut off while going about 40 mph. I took it to a mechanic. They drove it over a hundred miles and couldn't find anything wrong with it. In another week or so, it did it twice in one day, both city driving in heavy traffic. I'd put on the hazard lights, come to a stop and restart the car. Took it back to the mechanic. They drove it another 75 miles with the same lack of diagnosis. The next time it happened I was on an empty stretch of open road going about 40, and I was able to just shift into neutral while coasting and turn the key off and back on to restart the car while never actually stopping it. Realizing that this was actually better than stopping traffic and potentially causing an accident, this is how I have restarted the car and resumed acceleration in the several times it has done it since. But I am a very skilled driver- shifting into neutral and restarting the engine while coasting in traffic is definitely not a solution for the average person having this problem, and I am not advising anyone to do it. I've put a ton of miles on this car quickly, so other people with 2009 focuses may not have had this problem. But more will likely begin to experience it as their cars get older. Please recall.

- Derwood, MD, USA

problem #6

May 042009

Focus 4-cyl

  • 30,000 miles
While driving at speed, driver loses all control of gas pedal and has to put car in neutral and shut ignition off in order to restart car to reset control of gas pedal. This situation has happened several times over the last 5 months. On Oct 2 it happened 5 times on the same drive that day. This is a very serious problem that could cause injury or death. It is lucky that we have been aware of this and it hasn't cause us an accident. But now we must get it repaired because fate will catch up to you at the wrong time. I have researched this on the internet and found other people have had similar experience with this. After research some people have been told it is the throttle body which has a non replaceable sensor on it that controls a signal to the gas pedal. To repair it the throttle body has to be replaced. Please please investigate this. I have called Ford dealership about this and they show no concern or interest in finding out if this is a national problem they may kill someone. Please investigate before someone dies that is not aware of this.

- Warren, MI, USA

problem #5

May 252013


  • 54,000 miles


This happened on two separate occasions. The first occasion, my wife was driving the Focus at around 50 mph, when all of the sudden the car stopped accellerating (it didn't stall) and the wrench panel light came on. Luckily she wasn't in an accident, so she pulled over and restarted the car and it ran fine, and the light was off. Three weeks later we were driving on the highway at 75 mph when the exact same thing happened, the car just stopped accelerating, the wrench light came on, and again we were lucky we weren't in an accident and were able to pull off the road. We restarted the car and it was fine again. At this point I called Ford and they agreed to take a look at it and provide me a rental car. After a week, they said they thought it was a throttle body, but were unable to diagnose it because they needed to have it happen to them. I told them it was unreasonable because it happened three weeks apart, and the chances of it happening were slim within a week. I was trying to urge Ford to cover this since the car only had 54K miles on it, and it was dangerous to drive. They said since they couldn't diagnose it, they couldn't fix it, and even if they could diagnose it, it wouldn't be covered since its not under the powertrain warranty. I feel like this is a safety issue that they are very aware of, and the fact that they are 99.9% sure its a throttle body (the dealership employees told me they're getting tons of throttle body repairs coming in and the parts are on back order), they should be responsible to fix them for the safety of the consumer. There was no maintenance we could have done to prevent these dangerous situations from happening. Now I have to find a way to pay for this repair on my own so my wife can drive a safe vehicle. So Ford's defective part has already put my wife and I in danger, and now is costing me money I don't have!

- Waterford, MI, USA

problem #4

Feb 042013


  • 49,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled without warning. The failure mostly occurred when accelerating. The contact stated that the vehicle would also suddenly decelerate while the accelerator pedal was being depressed with the illumination of the wrench warning icon. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The failure mileage was 49,000 and the current mileage was 50,700.

- Fresno , CA, USA

problem #3

Jun 212013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
Last year during the summer I would be driving and the engine and wrench lights would come on and I would lose power. Pressing the accelerator did nothing, no response. This has continued to happen occasionally but in the last couple of weeks it has been a daily thing and it happens numerous times each day. I live in Virginia and it has not happened in the winter or early spring when the temps are cooler. I drive about 60 miles round trip and the majority of it is on the highway. This is a dangerous situation. I get to the side of the road and turn the car off, let it set for a minute or less and then start it again and it runs. I don't have to let it stay off for any amount of time, I can start it shortly after shutting it off with no problem. The tach jumps up between 2000-3000 rpms and then settles down. I don't have my foot on the gas when this happens. Sometimes it won't happen again for the rest of the trip but sometimes I drive only a couple miles before the situation repeats. When I'm parked with the car running I can watch the tach falter and drop below 1000 rpms but it catches itself and returns to normal. This is getting old and is nerve wracking while driving on the highway waiting for it to happen.

- Harrisonburg, VA, USA

problem #2

May 182013


  • 61,280 miles
Car went into limp home mode (wrench light) while pulling into traffic, sudden loss of power almost led to accident. My two year old was in the vehicle, with her side exposed to oncoming traffic when the car lost connection between the accelerator and throttle. Returned home immediately. Went out to start it later, no warning lights, ran fine. 2 days later, it went into limp home mode on the freeway, this time cel came on. Code P2135, indicating a problem with the throttle body. Part replaced, problem hasn't recurred. Research online indicates this is a known problem (there is a tsb). I would regard it as a safety issue based on the failure rates of widespread (albeit anecdotal) evidence. Though it isn't uncontrolled acceleration, it still is a loss of control; this system is drive-by-wire, the same as Toyota. I would think it should be given consideration for recall. Below are experienced shared on various forums regarding the vehicles affected (2008-2011 Focus):"T=271461"T=174484&highlight=wrench+light countless more on

- Redford, MI, USA

problem #1

May 142013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 69,500 miles
The contact owns a 2009 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the wrench warning lamp was illuminated. Also, the contact mentioned that on a different occasion, she attempted to turn off the vehicle; the key was removed but the vehicle continued running. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 69,500.

- Jeffersonville, IN, USA

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