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8.3

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
11,473 miles
Total Complaints:
36 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (29 reports)
  2. replace automatic clutch (4 reports)
  3. swapped it for another...ford says their is no solution (3 reports)
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2012 Ford Focus transmission problems

transmission problem

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2012 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #36

Jul 112014

Focus SEL HB 2.0L

  • CVT transmission
  • 23,000 miles

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

Read my description to another customer by Markforjg24 or Mark West. Also had trouble with a/c, heat, sound system shutting down about a year ago due to the computer needing update. Mad as hell when anything goes wrong with this car. Wish I'd never seen it. Bought it for fuel mileage, liked the body style, wanted a HB. Right now I'd rather have a GM product and they were on the very bottom of my list.

- , Christiansburg, VA, USA

problem #35

Mar 052012

Focus SEL 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles

I bought the Focus off the showroom floor the end of Feb. 2012. The very first day I went to drive it to work, it began making a loud grinding noise and would not shift into gear. This within 3 miles of my home. The dash engine light also came on. I went back home and called the Ford dealership. They towed it in but the dash light had gone off and they could not figure out what was wrong. They told me it was a "Microsoft" patch that they had applied. The shifting was still...shaky. I reported it before leaving that day. They drove around the block with me and told me this was "normal". It even rolled backwards when taking off on a hill but they told me this was normal. Each time I took it in for service or for the other issues that came up, I reported the problem. It again failed to shift into gear at all the end of June 2014. Of course, I'm over the 36K mark and now I have to pay. Now they say it is a "transmission module" that needed replacing. They kept my car a week and treated me like I was the problem. The could care less that I'd had problems with it all along. There are other issues as well. Only two years old and should not be having these issues.

- , Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #34

May 012014

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

I bought my 2012 Focus in April. It was 2 years old with warranty left, 15,000 miles. So happy....for a week. Shudders when it backs up, shudders when it shifts into gear. Moves backward when put into park. Leaps forward when put into park. Delays when gas on to move fast. Jerks all day. Went to Ford to fix it, ladies at front desk knew it was clutch in transmission because "they all do that". Ok. They kept it three days. Adjusted it. I get it back. Works for one week. Then same thing. I take it back. They replace clutch in transmission. I get it back. Does same thing. When I am leaving I tell service department I went from a Honda to a Ford and maybe i took a step down, they did not like that comment, told me "no one ever has to come back" after clutch in transmission is replaced. that was a lie. I am now calling them again. I am so frustrated. this was my first car in nine years. I work too hard for my money.

- , Visalia, CA, USA

problem #33

May 072014

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,156 miles

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

After my first service trip to the Ford Dealership late December, and being unable to take it in during a ridiculously blizzard-laden winter, I returned to the dealer on 05/02/2014 stating the same symptoms:

- Hesitation/Stutter when Accelerating from a stop - Rolling backwards on hills

This time they replaced the transmission clutch and seals, because apparently engine oil was leaking all over the clutch, causing it to slip. Again, after about a week or two, the hesitation issues returned. But now the car shuddered noticeably when idling. I have a dashboard GPS mount, and the whole screen shook as I sat at traffic lights ... which is really the only time I look at it. I know I'm more sensitive to the car than the service guys are, and I noticed how much it the floor vibrated after they serviced the vehicle.

However, since this is my first car with a "Hybrid" Transmission (Automatic + Sport mode), I was second-guessing myself, thinking that maybe I'm crazy, and this is really how the car is supposed to feel. I know cars with manual transmissions are a little more "shaky", but I've driven several automatics, friends and families' cars, several makes and models, and they accelerate and decelerate smoothly.

So, I took my car to get a second opinion from another Ford-Certified Dealership on 05/29/2014 (Matthews Paoli) to see if maybe I'm just whining about nothing....

And after a quick inspection (same-day), they confirmed that the pump seal was leaking onto the transmission clutch, causing it to slip. But because it was related to the work conducted by the Jenkintown Dealership, they couldn't service it for me -- I had to take it back to my Jenkintown dealership.

- , Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #32

May 032013

Focus Hatchback SE

  • CVT transmission
  • 12,300 miles

Bought used @ 1 year in 2013 with ,10,000 miles. Was told by salesman that tranny is a manual run by a computer. Turns out it's much more. It has twin independent variable camshaft timing and a dual clutch tranny with computer drive. No problems at first other than lousy pickup when merging on highway. Then started grinding noise under hood and shuddering. Hesitation and slipping feeling of gears, especially in first 3 gears. Took in & had download to computer. A little better for awhile but started back up again. A couple of times it has slipped & hesitated while turning left leaving me feeling very vulnerable to oncoming traffic. I've had it into the shop 3 times for downloads but that is all they can do so they say.

I recently asked them if it could be retrofitted to a standard manual clutch and transmission but was told no, it cannot.

Someone also mentioned on here rattling noises from center dash and around driver's seatbelt anchor. I too have that.

I really like the car, the color, the look, etc., and selling it isn't an option because I still owe on it probably more than I could get for it now. I'm at a loss as to why Ford put this transmission on the market with so many glitches in it and that there is no fix for it. Will it take someone getting killed in an accident before something is done to fix it for good?!

- , New Castle, PA, USA

problem #31

Oct 012012

Focus SEL V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 12,427 miles

the transmission on the new focus is garbage. have been at the dealer many times for shifting problem rattling and shaking. it makes the whole entire car shake ..has been fixed many time and programed and clutch changed but still have same stupid issue.

- , Windsor, Ontario, canada

problem #30

Nov 262013

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles

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

The clutch in the transmission slips during shifting. RPM momentarily spikes by 2000 RPM. I took it to the dealer and their "fix" was to reprogram the shift points to about 500 RPM higher. This relieves the stress on the clutch and I believe covers up the problem. (Until the warranty runs out) I brought the car into the dealer with a 36 MPG (Good mileage is why I bought the car.) The car now runs like it is low gear and the MPG dropped down to 29.

WARNING WARNING if you let these turkeys reprogram your car the changes are permanent and cannot be removed. I now have to shift manually (S mode) to get the advertised MPG. They told me to drive the car 1000 miles so it could "learn" my driving habits. (This will be just long enough so the lemon laws don't apply.) I have to ask my self why could I drive the new car off the lot and didn't have the "learning" before getting great gas mileage.

There is a class action suit in California and they report that a leaky oil seal causes the slippage. I think that this is a great car to buy if you want transmission problems. The company knows about this problem and they put the "shucks" on me with the computer reprogramming "fix". I normally keep a car for 100K miles but today we went looking for a different car. In my opinion, if there was a little honesty I would not seek a different brand.

- , Cumming, GA, USA

problem #29

Dec 312011

Focus SEL

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles

Wasn't long after I bought this car, it started acting stupid. Doesn't shift right and stutters all the time. Sometime you wonders if it's going to stall. I have had it at the dealership 5 times…been given a rental 3 of those times, once I had to buy a rental myself. They tinker with it, once they actually replaced the entire transmission, or so they say. Then they give it back, tell me to give it about 500 miles to learn my driving habits again, blah blah blah….same story every time. After about 2 days, it is doing it again. Sad, really sad. I love my car….I think it is a pretty car and I love the inside, but I can't stand driving it anymore. And Ford just won't do anything to fix it. I know a gentlemen, they actually took his car back….I know another couple, they are having the same problem. So it isn't just me. I am currently shopping to trade mine in. I am a Ford retiree. I get the A Plan….I have yet to set foot an a Ford dealership lot….I will NOT be buying a Ford…terrible that they know there is a problem, yet they don't even attempt to make it right. I am extremely disappointed in this company I was once so proud of …..

Right now…I am looking at a Chevy Malibu. :) Hoping they find one with everything I want on it. Hoping they take the stupid Focus….I'm done with it…piece of CRAP!

- , Mount Washington, KY, USA

problem #28

Oct 282013

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 21,000 miles

Do not buy a focus, it is a lemon! The transmission is bad and Ford knows about this problem. They are selling cars that are dangerous. If mine is not fixed the next time I take it into the Ford dealership, I going to contact the Better Business Bureau. All who have a focus should contact the B.B.B.

- , Southaven, MS, USA

problem #27

Sep 162013

Focus LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,000 miles

I HAVE TAKEN MY AUTO IN TO DEALERSHIP ((Cal Wortherington Ford twice about this problem, slipping transmission, I have been told TWICE by the HEAD Mechanic (a 90 yr old man!!!) that this is normal on this car. One of the younger mechanics there tells me "Oh, it's because inside the gear box it may be automatic but it shifts gears like it's a stick, so it's normal"....

Am I imaging things! Why, because I'm a Woman!!! I'm NOT STUPID! I know the transmission is slipping, I have had two of my friends who one has a Auto shop and the other is mechanically inclined, I TIRED OF GETTING THE RUN AROUND ON THIS! I KNOW WITH THE PAPERWORK I HAVE DOWN LOADED FROM YOUR SITE I HAVE A LITTLE BIT OF A LEG UP ON THEM, AND I AM TAKING IT BACK IN THIS FRIDAY THE 1ST OF NOVEMBER AND I'M TAKING A MAN. LET'S SEE IF ALL THAT I HAVE CHANGES THEIR TUNE!

Update from Nov 15, 2013: I firmly believe the reason they didn't take me seriously was and still is because I'm a female and they thought I'm stupid, so I had a male friend go in with me and he went on the test drive with a lead mechanic and they didn't even make it out of the car lot before the mech stated oh yeah I'm familuar with the problem we will order parts for the clutch and call u back in when we get them, so I'm waiting for the parts to come in still to this date its been two weeks today. If I could place a sexual discrimanation case I would do that, they have no right just because I'm a woman (no penis) should they be allowed to treat me as stupid! So I am waiting on a call when the parts get in

- , Anchorage, Alaska, USA

problem #26

Oct 142013

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,000 miles

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

It tends to roll back, jerking a lot and the dealership said it is a problem with transmission clutch, they had to take it apart. Tends to hesitate when driving, when I get off of work at three in the morning I would pull over to make sure its not going to cut off. While driving the car, it would jerk, making me pull over to check and see if anything is wrong. When the transmission light comes on I would pull over.

My warranty expires soon and I will never feel comfortable with this car getting off of work at night. I would prefer to get another car considering it's not reliable. I would call home letting someone know I am having problems encase I can't make it. Please help me. I shouldn't have to pay a dime for a car that has a common problem.

- , Detroit, MI, USA

problem #25

Sep 012013

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 200 miles

FROM DAY ONE, THE TRANSMISSION HAD A 2 SHIFTING PROBLEMS. IN DRIVE -THE TRANSMISSION WOULD FEEL LIKE IT SHIFTED FROM 1ST TO SIXTH GEAR AT ABOUT 15-20 MPH, THIS WAS FORDS AUTO TRANSMISSION THAT SHIFTED LIKE A MANUAL TRANS. THE OTHER ISSUE WAS IN REVERSE, PUTTING THE CAR IN REVERSE IT WOULD FEEL LIKE SOMEONE WAS HOOKING AND UNHOOKING A TRAILER. THESE PROBLEMS WERE INTERMITTANT. TOOK IT TO THE DEALER MANY TIMES AND AT FIRST THEY KEPT INSTALLING SOFTWARE UPDATES ON THE CAR- DID NOT WORK. THE REVERSE PROBLEM WAS DUE TO A SPINNING BEARING IN THE TRANSMISSION, DEALER SAID FORD MOTOR SAID THAT WAS NOT PROBLEM THEY COULD FIX, NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT. I DUMPED THIS PIECE OF SH** AT ABOUT 20K MILES AND BOUGHT A NEW 2013 CHEV MALIBU, I HAVE HAD IT A COUPLE MONTHS AND I AM VERY HAPPY WITH IT. I WILL NEVER -E V E R BUY ANOTHER FORD VEHICLE AGAIN. I CAN SEE WHY SO MANY AMREICANS BUY FOREIGN VEHICLES, MADE IN AMERICA IS NOT WHAT IT USED TO BE.

- , Pinckney, MI, USA

problem #24

Oct 112013

Focus LS 2.0L

  • CVT transmission
  • 6,184 miles

I have had this car since December 2012....now it needs the transmission repaired??? I feel ripped off! Can just imagine the future problems with this car.

- , San Angelo, TX, USA

problem #23

Jul 052013

Focus SEL V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles

Bought car a year ago and ran fine until about 8,000 miles. Vehicle hesitates, sputters and vibrates hard as if it's going to stall when moving from start to 1st gear. Took the car to dealership at end of August - turns out there was a recall on the transmission. After the recall fix the car ran even worse. Took it to another dealership today (9/23/13) and said since the recall fix was done, there is nothing more they can do - this is how the transmission runs. Problem is, almost got into an accident going from on ramp on to highway because it won't move into 1st gear - hesitates way too long and then runs so rough and vibrates so hard - it's scary. We're taking it to a third dealership this week and we'll see what they say. Also, I called the Ford customer hotline and they said that's how the transmission operates as well. I feel so unsafe in this vehicle I don't even want to drive it. I had someone in my car the other day and they thought I had a manual transmission. Another woman has a four year old car that runs better than mine. This is not right. I regret buying this car and just want my money back so I can drive something I'm not afraid of. Funny part is the first 8,000 miles or so had no problems at all. Will never purchase a Ford again.

- , Avon Lake, OH, USA

problem #22

Jul 052013

Focus SEL V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles

When moving from stop, vehicle rolls back on an incline. So much so that the warning beeps that I almost hit the car behind me were going off. If on a slight bump in the road, it rolls back - alot.

- , Avon Lake, OH, USA

problem #21

Nov 212012

Focus LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,000 miles

It's my first Brand New car and I am very disappointed. The vibration and hesitation should not be happening on a brand new car. The service department acts as though they have never heard such a thing. Then they tell me they "Google" it to find out what to do. They updated my computer system (?) in the car so it wouldn't do it again but it still does. Plus I had to take a day off work because they want the car for the day. Ford should not be so deceptive. They should acknowledge the issue and not give consumers the run around.

- , Everett, Washington, USA

problem #20

Jul 032013

Focus SEL 2.0L Inline 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,500 miles

When I first got the car, I felt the tranny shudder every shift. The kick was minimal and everything seemed fine. Took it into the dealer Boggus Ford, was told that It was normal. After 9,000 miles the kick was so bad I almost ran over a few people outside a grocery store! I almost hit people as I was at a stopped due to the car lunging every shift. I felt neck pain after awhile and from every stop the car would down shift to 2nd gear and fly as if I was trying to race someone! I told myself it was enough already. Took it in to Spikes Ford, they told me the car was deemed unsafe to drive so they couldn't let me leave with it. Apparently the seal was open to the transmission and the transmission was leaking fluids? I was once told it was a dry clutch transmission. Either way they told me fluids were entering the transmission and some fluids were exiting the transmission, don't know how that is possible. They considered it as an assembly error and told me it could have possibly been the assembly plant's error. Took a day to fix the car, replaced all clutches, seals, and fluids. So far, extremely satisfied with how it's working now! No more kicking, no more lunging, just very minimal shudder noise. So far I have 12,500 miles, no more problems. I know every car has it's problems but I'm very glad the dealership didn't hesitate to fix it. One day it was in, and the next day it was out. So far, now I'm satisfied! $980.00 was the total but thanks to the warranty it was covered. If Ford can continue to address my issues as quick as they did with the Focus transmission, I will continue to stay with them.

- , Mcallen, TX, USA

problem #19

Aug 242013

Focus SEL 2.0L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,000 miles

Purchased the 2012 Focus in December 2012 with 33,000 miles on it. It always stuttered when going from a stop, but it seems normal when compared to other focuses with the same engine and transmission. Then on August 24th, there was a complete lack of power and couldn't go past 20mph. It couldn't shift gears and felt like it was going to stall. When it was trying to change gears, it started jerking back and forth crazily. I had to pull over to allow 55mph traffic to pass me. It's a good thing there wasn't a car coming when I was taking a left turn across traffic, otherwise I would be dead. I left the car off for a while, then turned it back on and it seems normal.

I took it to the dealership to have checked out and of course they couldn't recreate what I was experiencing. They never can though, can they? There were a couple of transmission codes in there and they reprogrammed the PCM, but I have a feeling this didn't fix anything.

These cars periodically have transmission failure for which there is no fix. The problems are too infrequent and unpredictable so far that there will likely never be a long term fix unless you replace the transmission and the associated computer.

- , Cottage Grove, MN, USA

problem #18

Aug 172013

Focus

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,000 miles

Just bought the car. I could shift better on a standard transmission than it shifts. Really, Ford does not have a solution to this. I cannot believe they would actually sell a car with this kind of problem only to say that it is a standard part made over to automatic and that is just how it is!!!! Come on Ford!!!

Update from Sep 3, 2013: Took it to the Ford Service Dept. and sure enough they said that is just the way it is on the Focus. So...we went to the Chevy Dealership and swapped it for an Impala. Still have our old 2003 Impala, which we gave to our son and still doing great at over 100,000 miles. Warning do not get a Ford Focus unless you drive in town and until it heats up!

- , Krebs, OK, USA

problem #17

Sep 142012

Focus SEL 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 574 miles

When I stop for a red-light and the car idles briefly it will “stutter” and cause a slight jerky start when I accelerate. This seems to be most noticeable on warm days and is worse on some days than others. The first time I brought my Focus in the computer said that the #2 cylinder was miss firing and that was addressed. The second time the computer said that the #3 cylinder was miss firing and that was addressed. The third time the service manager said it was a problem with the transmission and that it was a problem Ford was aware. Service mgr told me today (12/11/12) that Ford now had a fix and he would order the parts. I hope this solves my problem, my fingers are crossed.

- , Knoxville, TN, USA

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