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

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2013 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 5 of 25)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #409

Nov 152015


  • 36,451 miles


This is a continuing problem with the dps6 clutch/transmission. Vehicle will launch in and out of gear while standing or moving. Clutch will engage and disengage at will. Vehicle will have complete loss of power starting out from a stop resulting in several near misses. Clutch will shudder at pull out and between gears and you never know if it will engage or not. This is by far the most dangerous car I have ever owned. You never feel safe and every trip could be your last. Ford has been sued over this(and lost) and still will not issue a recall on these cars. Every vehicle with this clutch/transmission can be fixed...Ford has the new clutch/transmission, we just need them to step up and do the right thing and recall/repurchase these death traps.

- Whitehall, PA, USA

problem #408

Apr 012014


  • 40,000 miles
Transmission issues: Clutch repairs X3 (drove off lot with issues. My mistake. I knew something was wrong with it during test drive, was reassured it was new technology.) 1 cleaning, 1 replacing of parts, then transmission control module went out while in motion on city street, going forward 25+ mph, quit completely. Had towed. Ran out of gas (in motion on a highway, 65 + mph) while monitor noted 150 to empty, found to be valve pressure management system failure, resulting in gas tank replacement

- Ellenwood, GA, USA

problem #407

Nov 052015


  • 26,456 miles
I purchased the vehicle at the Ford dealership in columbus ga in September of 2014. I have never owned a Ford before. But doing the test drive the car would roll back on hills, and it also did it after parking with the car in gear and switched off. The salesman explained that it was normal for the car to roll back and we should always use the park brake, on take off the cars transmission would slip and was slow to change gears he said it was normal with all small cars. We purchased the car with just over 19000 miles on it. Three months later I called the service shop about it because the car started slipping at the transmission and we found out there were electrical recalls on the car and warranty call backs about the transmission. After not getting a call back because they were backed up. I call back two weeks ago and told them that the car stalled with me and my grandkids were sitting in the back. Cars had to run off the side of the road to avoid hitting us from behind running at 50 mph plus this was very scary. I was told that Ford wanted all cars with that problem brought in for service right away, then L was told it would be after December 2015 before they could get to me because they were already backed up on cars with those problems. Were are paying for a car that has been sitting. We have had the car for over a year and driven it only 6000 miles because it is to dangerous to drive the car drops from 65 mph to 15 on the freeway with cars running at higher speeds around you they called me back after I informed them of this. After once again not hearing from them for two weeks I called and was given and appointment for 8:30 am the following morning. When the transmission stalls at 60 mph the engine light comes on. I was also told they don't have a loaner car and if its what that think is wrong it could take a month. Guess I will be paying for a rental.

- Columbus, GA, USA

problem #406

Nov 192015


  • 71,000 miles


I have had my car into the dealership 6 times with transmission troubles. The first 4 times I brought it in, I kept being told there was nothing wrong with my transmission. It works as designed. I kept having my car shuttering and lack of power, it was extremely noticeable when I needed to accelerate to cross traffic, at times I was afraid my car would not cross traffic in enough time because it would have a lack of power and then it would all of a sudden kick in. On 11/13/15, my car randomly downshifted and the check engine light came on. My car was having trouble engaging the transmission. A few miles down the road, transmission fault appeared on my information center on my dash. I stopped on the side of the road and shut my car off. Hoping this would possible let the computer re-sync itself. A few minutes later, I decided to see if I could get my car to a safer place since the shoulder I was on was extremely narrow with 50 mph traffic. As I started to move my car, I got approximately another 100 yards down the road and my information center on my car said my transmission was overheating and I needed to stop, at the same time, my car would no longer engage the transmission. I was able to coast to a safe spot on the side of the road. I called Ford roadside assistance and they were not able to assist me. So I called my insurance company. I was stuck on the side of the road for 3.5 hours waiting for a tow truck. I brought my car into the dealership. They were able to look at my car on 11/17/15. They said my car had some old fault codes they removed and that I didn't have the latest update. They said they updated my car and test drove it and everything was running fine. I picked up my car on 11/18/15 in the evening. On the evening of 11/19, my car did the exact same thing it did on 11/13/15. Needless to say my car is still sitting at the dealer.

- Rochester, WA, USA

problem #405

Nov 212015

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving approximately 25 mph, the vehicle stalled and lost all power. The vehicle was coasted to the side of the road where the contact waited a few minutes and then restarted the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to a local dealer who diagnosed and re-calibrated the transmission. The failure recurred. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 29,000. Updated 2/4/16 updated 02/16/16

- Malden, MA, USA

problem #404

Nov 102015


  • 56,000 miles
Purchased 2013 Ford Focus 11/8/15 used. 56K miles. Drove two days then shuttering problem with transmission. Brought car to dealer. Dealer will replace clutch. Takes 4-6 weeks for part. I am concerned that this will happen again. The transmission failed while accelerating on to highway. This is a major safety issue.

- Pennington, NJ, USA

problem #403

Feb 172015


  • 40,000 miles


The car stutters violently when taking off from a stop, and some times stalls. Also the car will on occasion get stuck in first gear. Very dangerous to have the car stall when trying to cross a busy street. Been into the shop three times still no fix, and my understanding is this is a recall and there is no real fix for the problem

- Fort Wayne, IN, USA

problem #402

Nov 102015


  • 38,000 miles
On 10 Nov 15 at 0900hrs I picked up my 2013 Ford Focus after the replacement of an ignition coil/spark plug and the reprogramming of my transmission control module (Ford recall 15B22). At 0930hrs while driving North on hwy 295 at about 40 mph on a straight portion of the highway, all my warning lights turned on and I lost engine power. The vehicle also felt as if it shifted into neutral. I had to use emergency driving procedures to pull onto the shoulder. I attempted to restart the vehicle but the starter did not even attempt to turn over. I called for a wrecker and had the vehicle towed back to the dealership for corrective action. I have not experienced am engine or transmission failure like this in the past. I believe that it may be due to the reprogramming of the transmission control module. It should be noted that the Ford Focus in question is a Canadian version, with 62000km/38000miles to date. I felt compelled to report this incident as it required me to use emergency driving techniques to bring the vehicle to a safe stop (although the brakes continued to function). Had I not been trained in those techniques the likelihood of a collision with another vehicle at high speeds would have been likely.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #401

Mar 022015


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving at various speeds, the vehicle began to violently jerk without warning. The failure recurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the clutch failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired twice, but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 82,000.

- Macon, GA, USA

problem #400

Oct 282015


  • miles
Purchased vehicle Oct 2013 with less than 400 miles, within a few days I called dealer to say I heard a grinding shuttering noise coming from transmission to be informed that was "normal". car began to get louder and began hesitation so I took it in and was told computer needed recalibrated. Ran ok for awhile then began to do the hesitating and shuttering again. I was informed there was a recall on the clutch seal..took it in for replacement. Ran fine for awhile began hesitation and shuttering yet again and had to have computer recalibrated again. Now with 28000 mile it has began to shift hard, shudder and hesitate yet again. Service is scheduled for Saturday 11/14/15.

- Minster, OH, USA

problem #399

Nov 012013


  • 50,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While operating the vehicle, the transmission malfunctioned and shifted irregularly causing the vehicle to shutter. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission was faulty and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired, but the failure recurred two months later. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 50,000.

- Proctorville, OH, USA

problem #398

Oct 232015


  • 36,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving approximately 15 mph, the vehicle independently switched gears without warning. On another occasion, when the gear was switched into the drive position and the accelerator pedal was depressed, the vehicle rolled backwards without warning. The contact also mentioned that when the accelerator pedal was depressed, the vehicle hesitated to accelerate and suddenly jerked violently. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, but was diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 36,000....updated 02/19/16

- Ocean City, NJ, USA

problem #397

Oct 302015


  • 54,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While accelerating from a stop, the vehicle hesitated to move forward and the check engine light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the transmission failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 54,000. The VIN was not available.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #396

Nov 022015


  • miles
Letter from senator burr on behalf of constituent re 2013 Ford Focus issues. The consumer stated while driving on the freeway at 65 mph, he noticed dead spots in the steering function, the vehicle seemed to drift in a direction and while trying to correct it, nothing happened right away. Then it would catch. The consumer also stated after driving the vehicle for a month, it was apparent there was a problem with the transmission. It was hesitating trying to shift and making noises. The dealer was aware of the problem and it stated it was called shuddering. The dealer informed the consumer it depended how fast he took off from start and it was standard for the vehicle. The consumer discovered there was a fix for the problem. However, records indicated the transmission had already been fixed on the vehicle.

- Winston-Salem, NC, USA

problem #395

Nov 022015


  • miles
2013 Ford Focus. Consumer writes in regards to vehicle transmission issues. The consumer stated the vehicle was serviced three times, within the past 16 months for transmission shutter problems.

- Livonia, MI, USA

problem #394

Oct 251015


  • 48,000 miles
The weatherstripping came loose on the paaengerside rear door, the dealer service dept reglued it back on and told me not to open that door for 24 hrs. This I did, but when I picked my wife up at the daycare and she gotmin the paas. Side front the weatherstrip came loose again and the glue smell made me sick. Also I am having transmission issues such as shudder starts, slipping shifts. I got into a row with the people at the dealer, friendship Ford, bristol, tn 37620 and was told by the owner never to come on his property again or I will be escorted off by the police.

- Bristol, VA, USA

problem #393

Oct 292015


  • 51,700 miles
The transmission disengaged while going 60 mph on highway. The engine light and traction control light came on and the warning (hill start assist not available). I coasted to the side of the road and had it towed to the Ford garage, where they replace the tcm. This was after many transmission reprogrammings and a clutch replacement because of the shuddering and shifting problems.

- Topton, PA, USA

problem #392

Oct 222015


  • 59,936 miles
I purchased my Ford Focus 2013 titanium from royal oak Ford in Michigan, it was made to order. All of its regular maintenance was performed at a certified Ford dealership and I take very good care of it. I have had issues with the clutch from the start however and am very concerned about its reliability, and my safety. After multiple instances of my vehicle slipping out of gear during steady highway driving (RPM jump with loss of vehicle speed) I tried to explain the issue to russ milne Ford multiple times being told that if I can¿T replicate it for them then they can¿T fix it. Russ milne Ford finally believed me after I produced a video of it happening. After the video, in April 2014 russ milne Ford reprogramed the PCM/tcm, replaced both the inner input shaft seals, and cleaned the clutch. The odometer was at 29,209 during this service. In October 2015 I was leaving a meeting in detroit, mi where my car shut off mid-commute in the middle of a crowded intersection. I put it in park, and tried to restart my vehicle but the engine did not even turn. After a few more attempts I put it into neutral and was able to push it to the side of the road with the help of bystanders. I had my car towed to bob maxey Ford where after explaining the issue to a mechanic he was able to guess what the issue was and said it was common on the Ford Focus. They kept it over the weekend to reprogram the PCM/tcm, replaced both the inner input shaft seals, the clutch, and a leaking bearing. The odometer was at 59,936 during this service. My questions to Ford: Is the new clutch sitting in my car any different from the original" or will this clutch fail 30,000 miles from now like before? if so, when are you going to address this issue? what is your confidence in the Ford Focus transmission"

- Macomb, MI, USA

problem #391

Jul 012014


  • 250 miles
When starting to accelerate, or driving and press hard on the accelerator, the engine may take off as expected, or may sputter, and hesitate, and have a jerky acceleration. I some intersection left turns, I have almost gotten into an accident due to this problem. I have learned to be careful, and assume the worst, and to allow plenty of time to make the turn. This is a very dangerous situation. I have owned this car for about 3 years, and this has happened many times through the 3 years. I have taken the car to a Ford dealer 3-4 times, and they tell me there is nothing wrong - the care is within the specs it is supposed to be within. Nothing they can do.

- Urbana, IL, USA

problem #390

Oct 222015


  • 45,000 miles
Purchased a new 13' Focus and within the first couple months it started making the grinding/shutter when shifting. Have taken the car in a total of 3 different times for same issue. Since the last time it was taken in (10/07/2015) the noise is still present and the gears now seem to be slipping when the car attempts to shift at anything over 3K RPM. Discovered the issue trying to merge on to the highway when the RPM's went above 6K but the car would not shift into any gear as if transmission was/is slipping in high RPM's.

- Henderson, NV, USA

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