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. Notes: Ford changed a lot of things for its 3rd generation, just none of them were a good idea.

The transmission tends to hesitate and jerk when accelerating. The new electronically-driven power steering can fail suddenly and without warning. Even Ford's SYNC can be a headache. Actually, scratch that last one --- it's always been a headache.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
18,373 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.

2013 Ford Focus drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2013 Ford Focus:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2013 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 10 of 25)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #309

Sep 042013


  • 24,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving at unknown speeds, when shifting into second and third gear, the vehicle jerked. The failure occurred daily. The contact mentioned that the failure occurred violently when on an incline. The vehicle was taken to a dialer where it was diagnosed that the clutch needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 24,000.

- Ravenswoodwva, WV, USA

problem #308

Jun 192013


  • 10,760 miles
I have a 2013 Ford Focus. The car remains under warranty. Since I bought the car, the manufacture has paid for the clutch to be completely replaced twice due to issues with the car stalling while I have been driving it (it is a manual transmission that is controlled by a computer system and functions as an automatic for the driver). The car was bought in September 2012. The clutch was replaced on 6/19/2013 with 10,760 miles. The clutch was again replaced on 9/24/2014 at 28,215 miles. Both times the clutch has been replaced it has been due to safety concerns about the car stalling while going uphill. Last night (5/16/2015) while on the interstate going approximately 55 mph with my family in the car, I felt the car transmission slip out of gear. I was unable to accelerate/give gas to the engine and the car was rapidly decelerating. It was difficult to get to the shoulder safely. This car appears to have significant safety flaws with the the dual-clutch, automated-manual transmission that make it unsafe to drive.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #307

Feb 102014


  • 36,000 miles
Vehicle has bad issues with the transmission shutters lurches and bucks. Ford will only warranty transmission slippage below 30% throttle any slippage above 30% is not covered by any warranty. This is safety hazard when pulling into traffic. And does not make for a very nice to drive car. No other Ford transmission has that poor of standard. Slippage less than 250 RPM [per event] or over 31% throttle is still a broke car but Ford wont fix it.

- Merritt Isl. , FL, USA

problem #306

Oct 312014


  • 19,900 miles


Car's transmission shutters and jolts. Hesitates to accelerate. Dangerous when merging onto highway or making a turn. Sent it to Ford to fix as per their fsa on the transmission seal. Both dealerships said there was nothing wrong with it, but it still hesitates, shutters, shakes and jolts. This is a safety concern. It needs to be brought up to Ford.

- Allen Park, MI, USA

problem #305

Feb 202013


  • 320 miles
The car will nearly stall (as if transmission slipped/disengaged), engine sputters, transmission grinds and jerks then gears catch and car lurches forwards and speeds off as if it is possessed. This is very dangerous when attempting to enter moving traffic and especially dangerous when crossing multiple lanes of traffic or if the driver is less experienced or isn't aware that he/she needs to accommodate it. The more miles accumulated, the worse and more pronounced the issue. Ford "reprogrammed" my transmission July 2013 (11,000 miles) with no results. Ford's response, "shudder" is normal and the intentional design of the car. The issue worsened to the point the transmission would disengage while climbing hills ( worse on moderate to steep grades) and reliability of this car deteriorated to the point I was rolling backwards down a hill I had attempted to climb at 50-55mph because the car just stops moving forward then the car will grind, bang shake, jerk then lurch forward and speed off like it finally got gas and found the gears (May 1,2015). October 22, 2014, I took the vehicle in for an oil change, with the Ford letter in hand and asked them to check my car again. Parts were ordered and it was safe to drive until then but, if I was left stranded to call roadside assistance. Ford is stalling progress & repair of this issue because they intend to avoid lemon law. My complaints went undocumented on service request paperwork because "shudder is normal/intentional operation" and subsequent complaints were ignored/undocumented because there were no parts to repair it. Resale & trade-in value is low, depreciate at a faster rate and are generally unsafe. Ford needs held accountable, remedy the issue in a timely manner to minimize loss, investment and potential danger to those who unfortunately purchased this defective product. This car is unreliable & dangerous!

- Newton, WV, USA

problem #304

May 102015


  • 31,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the vehicle started to shutter when accelerating. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who reprogrammed the PCM. A few weeks after the repair, the check engine and the PCM warning lights illuminated. The failure mileage was 31,000.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #303

May 312013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 3,164 miles


The car abruptly shudders/jolts between 0-20 mph. This occurs mainly during acceleration. The first time I took it to have it looked at, I was provided a piece of paper from Ford explaining that this was a typical, and normal, characteristic of the transmission within the 2013 Ford Focus models. The issue was verified, but no maintenance was performed. I again took my vehicle in for the same issue 06/06/2013, where it was one again verified, yet no maintenance was performed because Ford was still having dealerships give customers the piece of paper explaining the transmission. I asked that when the transmission blows if it would be covered, and I was told 'yes.' The car was taken in again 02/17/2014 for the same issue, verified, and maintenance was performed this time because Ford has recognized that it indeed was an issue, and not a characteristic. The problem continued to exist, and my transmission was removed and cleaned on 06/30/2014. My car has gone in for additional service due to this shuddering transmission; I was turned away once when I arrived a dealership on a Saturday for this issue, and was told 'it was a known issue, ' and on April 22, 2015, I was told I needed a new clutch, which is on backorder for 12 weeks. The problem will not go away; I do not feel safe driving my car.

- Guilderland, NY, USA

problem #302

Oct 082012


  • 1,422 miles
First incident 10/8/12: Vehicle shuddered violently on acceleration from a stop and shuddered in between gear shifts. Reprogrammed PCM/tcm module, TR sensor relearn, shift drum motor and clutch relearn. Second incident 9/25/13: Vehicle vibrates on acceleration. Reprogrammed PCM/tcm per tsb 13-9-4. third incident 10/29/13: Vibration again on acceleration. Ordered parts per tsb 13-9-4. fourth incident 12/19/13: Install 29 parts ordered on 10/29 visit on transmission including clutch assembly and seals. Fifth incident 10/8/14: Vehicle started shaking and shifting strange on the highway and check engine light came on. Very scary incident as I was afraid the engine was going to die and I would lose control. Managed to get off the highway and was near Ford dealer in downers grove who diagnosed code P090C (transmission) and said he could not get the car in as they were full but said to take it slow and managed to get it back to van drunen Ford for service. Service department reprogrammed PCM/tcm and performed pinpoint test per wsw procedure. Sixth incident 4/16/15: Check engine light came on, vehicle shuddered and tachometer was fluctuating at steady speed. Replaced tcm, reprogram and perform adaptive learn. Seventh incident 5/12/15: Shudder has become worse than when it was repaired the last visit. Vehicle is presently at the dealer after filing complaint with Ford customer care. Vehicle has been in seven times for the same problem and Ford refuses to replace this transmission.Ford has extended the transmission warranty to 100,000 miles and I was outwardly told this was due to the fact that they know there is a problem with this transmission on this vehicle type. You only have to surf the web to find out how many people are having the same problem with this Focus transmission. They need to replace this transmission or extend the warranty indefinitely.

- Lansing, IL, USA

problem #301

Aug 012014


  • 55,000 miles
My 2013 Ford Focus has demonstrated jerky shifting, engine sputtering and stalls related to ineffective shifting of the transmission since it was first purchased. However, at approximately 55,000 miles, the transmission was sputtering and stalling excessively. At that time, we were notified of a recall on the transmission. On September 16, 2014, my transmission was "reprogrammed" by a local Ford dealership. Thereafter, the sputtering slowed for a short period and my gas mileage was also reduced. Not long after that, the sputtering and stalling returned. In October 2014, my local Ford dealership replaced the electronic clutch in my Focus. During the week of May 4, 2015, the car failed to accelerate on the highway approximately three times. On the morning, of May 12, 2015, my transmission failed to shift while I was attempting to exit the highway onto a busy, three lane exit ramp. I put on my flashers and tried frantically to get my Focus to shift into gear and move forward. Rather, it started rolling backwards. Next, a mack truck nearly rear-ended my car. My car has been towed to a local Ford dealership, and I have been told that the Ford dealership will evaluate what is wrong with my transmission, but they have not seen any other Ford Focus automobiles in our area demonstrate these symptoms. I see endless blogs with Ford customers who do have this same problem. I believe that a further recall is required regarding the 2013 Ford Focus.

- Gray Summit, MO, USA

problem #300

Sep 082014


  • 18,257 miles
Vehicle shudders, bucks & hesitates upon take off and acceleration. Feels like its going to stall. Makes grinding noise when changing gears. Have had it "repaired" twice at the Ford dealership where purchased for same issue. First time on 9/8/2014 & 2nd time on 5/4/2015.

- West Palm Beach, FL, USA

problem #299

Sep 122013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 20,000 miles


I bought the 2013 Ford Focus brand new and it has been the biggest headache. The transmission is no good! the car will hesitate to take off and then take off really fast after revving up to over 7500 RPM before shifting into gear and taking off very fast. This is very dangerous and unsafe to me and other drivers on the road! it shutters and shakes, sometimes doesn't want to start. This car is a lemon and not dependable. I sure hope a recall is issued because this is not fair to the consumers who are paying for a car that is defective.

- Granbury , TX, USA

problem #298

Jan 132015


  • miles
Ford is experiencing significant repair obligations due to the defective design of their clutch/automatic transmission arrangement on their 2013 Ford Focus models. The owner of this vehicle is driving a car that has a tendency to stall at intersections and at highway entry lanes. I have been told this condition is being experienced by many other Focus drivers. This is a hazardous condition and as far as I can tell, Ford is telling owners of these vehicles to keep on driving them until the parts can be replaced and the wait time in many cases is extending 90 days or more.

- Nyack, NY, USA

problem #297

Jun 182014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 9,200 miles
I was starting to accelerate up a hill and the engine lost all power and was revving at a high rate as though it were in neutral. I had no idea what was happening. It was scary. After shifting a few times it eventually recovered in a weird, sluggish way. I took it to the dealer (torrington Ford, Lincoln and Mercury in torrington, ct) and they "reprogrammed the PCM and tcm to the latest calibration" and claimed it road tested ok. However, the car still shuddered excessively at times when shifting, especially at low speeds. I brought it in again two months later and the dealer report said "the shudder is present but not bad enough to perform any further repair, currently below 250 RPM difference and no repairs are needed at this time." A few months ago I had the salesperson drive it and he acknowledged the shudder was way more than what it should be with this transmission. He said he would speak with the service department but I never heard back from him until today when he sent me a "hi, how's your car doing" email that was a standard blast email to all his customers. I reminded him of the problem I am continuing to have with the Ford Focus and told him I don't like driving it. I haven't heard back from him yet. Actually the car scares me. Sometimes, like yesterday, the shudder lasts a full 3 seconds. Something is very wrong with this vehicle. Ford keeps saying it is supposed to shift differently than other cars but nobody would buy one if they experienced this kind of shuddering during test a drive. I first noticed the problem at around 7,500 miles, maybe a little sooner but I probably thought it was my imagination or that I was actually feeling a rough road surface.

- Litchfield, CT, USA

problem #296

Apr 232014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 13,648 miles
Clutch shuddering - vibrating at 13,648 miles - took in for repair - car was never quite right after that - now again at 29,000 miles its shuddering and vibrating again - Ford telling me the parts may arrive sometime between 8 to 12 weeks for the repair.

- Orchard Park, NY, USA

problem #295

Jan 302015


  • 14,000 miles
I'm not sure of the exact date of the incident, but I started the car and shifted it into D (drive), and the vehicle revved, jerked, and the "check engine" light came on. I drove the car home carefully, pulled it in the garage, and went to adjust it by putting the car in R (reverse), and the transmission would not engage. I did call Ford up, and the problem was "fixed" but since I have had this car the transmission has always jerked some, and I have heard some rattling in the transmission/power train often. I do not consider these good signs as to the reliability of the 2013 Ford Focus.

- Chandler, IN, USA

problem #294

Apr 222013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 100 miles
Purchased a Ford Focus in 2013 and have had consistent issues since purchase. Am currently on the waitlist (parts are back-ordered and not expected for 3-4 months) for the second clutch replacement. Car shudders when accelerating. Feels unsafe to drive as I can't predict when it will happen. This is a known transmission issue that Ford has acknowledged, however, the clutch replacements can not be the fix since I have already done that. They have also reprogrammed my "brain" so that wasn't the fix either. Now, for the next 3-4 months I have to continue driving an unsafe vehicle waiting for parts. This vehicle should be recalled before thousands of Ford Focus drivers get T-boned by a tractor trailer as their car shudders it's way across an intersection. The NHTSA needs to step in, as Ford isn't aggressively fixing this issue.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #293

Apr 172015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 36,500 miles
My vehicle downshifted from approx 60 mph- 20mph immediately and unexpectedly in rush hour traffics. I temporarily lost control of the car and if I had not been able to get it back under control and almost ran off the side of the road rt. 7 traveling North towards winchester and almost was hit by a tractor trailer in the right lane it lurched. I decided to turn off N aback road to see if this was just a, fluke and it seemed to do its and off, but not as roughly, revving up and down and shifting up and down, then wa fine until I turned onto rt.81 North towards inwood, wv. The vehicle continued to have was seems to be continuous revving and shifting problems, I drive it home and had my best friend follow me slowly to the parsons Ford dealership to be looked at. There is a transmission/computer programming issue that Ford is aware of. I had this issue in the first 1000 miles that occurred once in front of my house on bac creek valley drive, upon parking the vehicle, turning it off and restarting the problem disappeared. I commented on it during the 30,000 mile maintenance and chalks it up to a glitch during the normal break-in period of the vehicle. The last incident almost resulted in a potentially fatal condition, here I almost caused an accident with an 18-wheeler and other vehicles. I do not want my wife to drive this vehicle and feel it is unsafe and should be immediately recalled before anyone gets killed as a result. Based on a research Ford has upgraded the transmissions in the 2015 line of the Ford Focus line, and should replace the vehicles.

- Hedgesville, WV, USA

problem #292

Jun 202013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 2,000 miles
Transmission clutch makes vibration noise, slips, rolls backwards when on hill when you first start, clutch and associated parts have been fixed or replaced at different times, was told at last inspection by dealer there is nothing they could do with it and would have to live with it due to Ford motor specifications. Car has refused to move at different times when you start up from a complete stop.

- Iuka, MS, USA

problem #291

Apr 092015


  • 64,800 miles
Car shuttered, grinded and rpms went up and down, and have temporary loss of power. Took into Ford and replaced transmission. After breaking in the transmission, it has started to shutter and grind again once the car warms up. Car had grinded ever since we purchased it and was told by Ford many times that it was normal, but found out later it was not normal.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #290

Aug 052013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 20,736 miles
This vehicle has been into Ford service for a continuous oil leak from the transmission 4 times, 8/5/13, 8/25/14, 1/13/15, and 4/15/15. The transmission oil is leaking onto the clutches causing violent shuttering when the vehicle is shifting.

- Howell, MI, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?