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:
3 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
21,273 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 engine problems

engine problem

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2013 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 3 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #104

Feb 012014


  • 1,000 miles


The vehicle has been very sluggish since day one of the lease. The transmission does not seem to engage accordingly. Upon acceleration the vehicle hesitates and/or sputters, lurching forward and then hesitating again. I have had the vehicle in for service by an authorized Ford dealer a few months ago but the problems still remain. I plan on taking the vehicle in again since it continues to display the same issues it has since the day we began our lease.

- Dexter, MI, USA

problem #103

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 #102

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 #101

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 #100

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 #99

Apr 152015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 23,530 miles
Driving on the highway the car is non stop bugging down like someone grabs the car and pulls it back. Then when I try to take off the car drops to almost zero rpms and dies in the middle of the road for 3mins and then start but acts like it has zero power and jumps back and forth trying to go. Very dangerous I think!

- El Paso , TX, USA

problem #98

Feb 182015


  • 15,000 miles


The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving at various speeds, the engine stalled and the check transmission warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 15,000. Updated 6/11/15

- Iron Belt, WI, USA

problem #97

Feb 142015


  • 39,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. While driving at approximately 60 mph, the vehicle jerked and the vehicle failed to accelerate when the accelerator pedal was depressed. The failure recurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, where it was diagnosed that the input shaft needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired, but the failure persisted. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and stated that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 14V495000 (electrical system). The failure mileage was 39,000.

- Dunn, NC, USA

problem #96

Sep 102013


  • miles
Pulling from red lights/stop signs is very dangerous due to the transmission stalling, shuttering, grinding. Very easily to get into accidents because stalling in transmission. Please recall this vehicle a lot of families are not safe in this vehicle.

- Santa Ana, CA, USA

problem #95

Mar 022015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 49,500 miles
For the 3rd time in a 3 month span, my 2013 Ford Focus SE stalled while driving. Vehicle would not restart for approximately 20 minutes. This created an unsafe situation where I was stuck with a disabled vehicle. 1st failure instance occurred when I was coming to a stop at a traffic light 2nd failure instance occurred while driving at highway speeds (65mph) 3rd failure instance occurred while just after entering a highway at approx 45mph.

- Allentown, PA, USA

problem #94

Jan 012015


  • 10,000 miles


For a number of months the vehicle transmission shudders, lags, and acts intermittently lurching. Very dangerous. When applying gas, one never knows if the vehicle will go forward smoothly, or instead lurch or shudder potentially causing to be rear-ended by someone or hit because the vehicle doesn't accelerate to queue. All accompanied by a loud grinding sound. A piece of junk!

- Harrison Township, MI, USA

problem #93

Feb 132015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 10,500 miles
2013 Ford Focus was going 35 mph, saw a late 1990's Ford Ranger stop short in front of a fire station and tried to brake. Couldn't stop in time and rear ended the Ford Ranger. The driver of the Focus got out of the vehicle and to speak to the other driver and the engine of the Focus caught fire about 30 seconds later. Firemen were across the street and came over to extinguish the fire. With all of this, the airbags did not deploy. I called Ford to alert them of this issue. They gave me a case number and within 1 business day I was contacted by customer care. They said they would inspect the vehicle to at a local dealership to find out why the airbags didn't deploy. They said they would not cover the cost and were vague about what the next steps were and how long the process would take. When I tried to inquire further, they said they wanted to know what my intentions were. I mentioned were are not trying to shakedown and sue Ford, we simply want answers.the insurance company, state farm, totaled the Focus and they are working with me to give Ford the vehicle, but Ford is not cooperating. I haven't been in contact with someone since the original follow-up and we have questions that need to be answered in order for state farm to give Ford possession of the vehicle. Ford has stopped cooperated and they have been impossible. This is a safety issue that we are trying to address and Ford is dragging this process out as long as they can.

- Playa Del Rey, CA, USA

problem #92

Mar 122013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 2,700 miles
This vehicle has been deemed a "lemon" pursuant to Colorado BBB auto complaint. The clutch has been replaced twice but the vehicle continues to shudder, lag, or intermittently lurch forward. It is a hazard to drive.

- Greenwood Village , CO, USA

problem #91

Sep 242014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 9,500 miles
Anytime while driving this vehicle you will experience grinding, shuttering and hesitation usually at lower traffic speeds, which is sometimes unsafe while merging into traffic because of the hesitation.

- Belle Vernon, PA, USA

problem #90

Jun 262014


  • 38,000 miles
My Ford Focus shudders when accelerating and lurch forward without warning when I'm slowing down or accelerating. I have had it repaired once and need to go back again. How many times do I have to go without a car because the dealership once again has my car in for repairs due to a manufacturer transmission defect. Also, what premature internal wear is this all causing" will I need to replace parts before they would normally need replacing or fixing"! I'm worried the car will breakdown or there will be a crash where someone gets seriously hurt. It has been brought to my attention that Ford knew about the defect and concealed the information and there are numerous law suits out there for this particular issue. I really don't feel safe driving the car anymore. I can't remember the specific date of the first incident but I can find out from the dealership if necessary.

- Ofallon, IL, USA

problem #89

Dec 272012


  • 10,000 miles
My vehicle shudders between first and second gears when accelerating from stopped or low speeds. It jolts randomly when driving in lower speeds. There are sounds of grinding and rattling when coming out of turns/accelerating out of a turn.

- Charleston, SC, USA

problem #88

Sep 042013


  • 3,000 miles
I have noticed that my car shifts awkwardly and makes a grinding noise when shifting into second and sometimes third gear. Sometimes the car will bog down and then get a surge of power and level off. Sometimes I will start going and between first and second gear it will bog and cause me to jerk forward. Some days it won't do it but most of the time it does.

- Dallas, GA, USA

problem #87

Nov 232014


  • 23,900 miles
Car went from 60 mph to 40mph to 20mph to zero and stalled and died in less than ten seconds while driving on the interstate North of atlanta, ga on Nov 23, 2014. Car came to complete halt when I tried to push the gas pedal and accelerate. I almost died. Car has been in the repair shop at Ford dealership for over 23 days now.

- Rex, GA, USA

problem #86

Aug 282014


  • 47,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Ford Focus. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the brake pedal was depressed and the vehicle stalled. Additionally, the check engine, the battery, and the oil warning lights illuminated. The vehicle was able to restart. The failure occurred on several occasions. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failures. The failure mileage was 47,000.

- South Range , WI, USA

problem #85

Oct 012012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
When vehicle is stopped and at idle such as at a red light, the engine shakes and when the accelerator pedal is depressed the car hesitates and does not want to move and feels like the vehicle will stall. Once speed is up to about 10-15mph acceleration is fine with no vibration or shakes. This issue can be very serious when trying to pull out into traffic. Took to the dealership and was told nothing was wrong. Something is wrong and is unsafe.

- Warren, MI, USA

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