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: For the third year in a row, the 3rd generation Focus is experiencing massive transmission problems.

Most notably owners keep complaining about how there's bad hesitation and jerking when starting from a stop. This isn't the result of an old, worn out part. In fact, the average mileage it's reported to us is just over 15k miles.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
7 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
14,984 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.

2014 Ford Focus drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2014 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 17 of 23)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #126

May 042015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 20,100 miles


Car unexpectedly hesitates, due to transmission design, when accelerating from a stop. This causes vehicles behind you to rapidly catch up, making a rear impact/accident more likely. Also, this same transmission hesitation causes the inability to accelerate out of harms way when necessary.

- Richmond, TX, USA

problem #125

May 052014


  • 16 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the vehicle hesitated to accelerate, lunged forward, and stalled without warning. The contact mentioned that the gears were difficult to change over into second and third gear. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where they replaced a seal within the transmission but the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer, who replaced the clutch but the failure recurred. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer, who replaced the clutch a second time and a fuel vacuum line but the failure recurred. A fourth occasion, the vehicle was taken to a dealer where it was diagnosed that the clutch needed to be replaced a third time, however the part was on back order. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 16.

- Crawfordville, FL, USA

problem #124

Sep 252014


  • 100 miles
Auto clutch surges, jerks, drags. Shifts into reverse when you are in drive.

- Lakewood, WA, USA

problem #123

Mar 012015


  • 25,000 miles


I have owned my Ford Focus for about 1 year- it's a 2014 model. I bought the car after I was told it would not have the same problems as my 2012 Ford fiesta, which I traded in for a Focus after having the transmission completely rebuilt because of transmission problems. The dealer who sold me the car had suggested I go to a Ford Focus and told me the transmission was different from my fiesta. He clearly was not honest with me about this issue and now, I have started experiencing the same problems Ford Focus as early as last month; the same issues that led them to rebuild my fiesta transmission, which did not end up fixing the issue. It has begun shaking and grinding when accelerating. It grinds while in motion at speeds below 40 miles per hour. I have been doing research and have been finding that several reports and law suits have been filed with no response. I am filing a complaint in hopes that something will be done about this. It is not ok that these cars are being sold.

- Eden Prairie, MN, USA

problem #122

Feb 162015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 100 miles
The 2014 Ford Focus has a problem with the transmission. It lurches as slow speed of less than 20 mpg and it hunts for a gear when passing other cars (50 to 60 mph). The transmission is two three speed manual transmissions shifted electronically and it does not work. I would imagine there have been accidents because if you are not ready to catch the car when it lurches it will run into other vehicles. I have taken the car back to two different dealerships and neither one of them can fix the problem. What I think needs to happen is Ford needs to get an engineer that understands how to program the transmission and spend some time working with the shift points.

- Rushville, IN, USA

problem #121

Aug 102014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 2,588 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Ford Focus. While driving at various speeds, the engine stalled. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 2,588. Updated 6/4/15 the consumer stated the vehicle would stall, shudder and slip out of gears. Updated 12/17/15.8jb

- Louisville , KY, USA

problem #120

Apr 152015


  • 39,903 miles


Vehicle shakes, hesitates, shudders from stop and at slow speeds. Very jerky and inconsistent shifting through the first 2 to 3 gears. Not as apparent at speeds over 25mph.

- Springfield, MO, USA

problem #119

Feb 192014


  • 1,200 miles
Transmission slippage, bucking, kicking, jerking, rough engagement, sudden acceleration, delay in downshifts, shuddering and delayed acceleration.

- Kemah, TX, USA

problem #118

Apr 012015


  • 40,000 miles
Transmission feels like it is slipping upon acceleration. Feels like driving in high gear, lots of jumping & jerking.

- Arkadelphia, AR, USA

problem #117

Jun 032014

Focus 4-cyl

  • miles
Within the first few hundred miles I drove the car I noticed that when I was at highway speed and tried to accelerate the car acted like it couldn't get in gear and go. The acceleration was delayed dramatically. That has continued ever since. More recently from a dead stop when I accelerate the car shudders, makes loud, odd noises and accelerates with difficulty. This car is a danger to me and to others.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #116

Nov 202014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 3,000 miles


The Ford Focus has had shifting issues since first purchased. Ford performed a reprogramming of the computer module, did not solve the problem. Ford repaired the clutch and it seemed to solve the problem for a few months. The sluggish shifting reappeared a few months after the repair conducted on battlefield Ford (va). Took the vehicle to ted britt, Ford chantilly va, according to the technician the problem could not be replicated. "Ford states that some shifting lag is acceptable" of concern is that I've owned a Ford, Ranger/Fusion/Explorer/ Ford Fusion hybrid, none of these vehicles have this issues with shifting. Its Ford going to wait until someone gets seriously hurt?

- Chantilly, VA, USA

problem #115

Nov 042013

Focus 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
Transmission shudders upon acceleration. On numerous occasions the car has almost stalled out almost causing us to be rear ended. I have taken the car to the dealer, the first time they replaced the clutch assembly. 2nd time they had to reprogram the part that was replaced. Car is currently in the shop awaiting outcome this time. Very upsetting considering this is supposed to be a reputable company that has been around for many years. I am very disappointed and I hope they do recall on these transmissions.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #114

Oct 082014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 6,000 miles
Vehicle on multiple occasions has slipped/stalled when trying to accelerate. Sometimes it is from a dead stop and sometimes it is at speed. Car will shudder, high rev and not shift, start to go and stall. I feel unsafe in this vehicle and Ford has not corrected the problem.

- Aurora, CO, USA

problem #113

Apr 012014


  • 50 miles
The car's transmission has acted up almost since the very beginning when I purchased the vehicle. This was my very first brand new car and was unaware of the car sounds and how it feels when driving it. However, a problem in the transmission started getting more noticeable as time passed by, suddenly it would slip and hesitate at low speeds. I couldn't believe it since I've had the car for only a few months. I recently took it to the Ford dealership and all they did was reprogram the computer and gather information for the Ford manufacturer. Now the car is even worse than before and doing things it did not do before I took it in. I want the Ford manufacturer to buy back this vehicle; I don't feel secure in it anymore and I don't consider it a reliable way of transportation anymore. I'm strongly considering not to go for another Ford vehicle ever again, I'd rather go with other makes and models. My experience with Ford had been bad, I had this car for only a year and only 11,000 miles and I'm already dealing with the transmission.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #112

Mar 222014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 3,500 miles
On several occasions (while pulling into traffic). From a stop the transmission revs but car will not accelerate. This is a safety issue that needs to be addressed. This car was purchased new for my daughter so she would have a safe reliable vehicle to drive to school. A transmission causing a loss of acceleration while in normal driving conditions is not safe or reliable.

- Richardson, TX, USA

problem #111

Mar 292015


  • 24,700 miles
When pulling forward out of a gas station, I hit the accelerator, the car started shuttering and jumping, then reed up to 3,000 RPM after I took my foot off the gas, I was only trying to go forward about 20 feet. It then kept going without any input from me as the driver. I had to hit the brake all the way down to stop it and prevent the car from going into another vehicle. The car then shifted really hard and almost lurked my passenger into the dashboard. This transmission is not safe and this was not the first time it has happened.

- Salt Lake City, UT, USA

problem #110

Aug 012014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 400 miles
The vehicles transmission was making noises, shuttering and hesitating when taking off. I took it to the dealer 3 times and finally on the third time (after getting the regional Ford customer service representative involved) they told me that they had to replace the automatic clutch. They kept the car for a week and when I got it back I have to admit it drove better. However now 9 months and 15K miles later the transmission is making the same noises again and it is not shifting properly. The vehicle is doing exactly what it did when it only had 400 miles on it. I did some research and found out that a lot of people are having this same problem with the Ford Focus.

- League City, TX, USA

problem #109

Mar 212015


  • 9,027 miles
While taking turns at 10 - 15 mph speed and/or while accelerating from a stop, the vehicle gives out a series of rattling noises with the transmission. This seems to occurs at no / partial throttle being applied. At times, while accelerating from stop, the vehicle shatters quite strongly. The shudder is pretty strong when it occurs when accelerating from a stop on an incline.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #108

Mar 212015

Focus 4-cyl

  • 1,800 miles
We were sitting at a stop light on a slight incline (no more than a driveway). When the light turned green, I took my foot off of the brake and the car started rolling backward. I applied normal gas pedal and it still rolled back. I gave it more throttle for a second and the transmission finally caught. Fortunately, we avoided rolling into the car behind us. The car probably rolled back three or four feet before engaging. Since the car was purchased new, it shudders when leaving a stop, and has a grinding noise in the front when going uphill and turning to the left. In other words, it has the same issues as all of the other complaints people have posted online. When we bought the car, we were told that after a 1,000 or so miles of driving, the transmission would "learn" our driving habits and be smooth..........right. When I talked to the local Ford dealer's service dept., I was told these are just characteristics of these transmissions. If these are properties of a normal Ford dual-clutch transmission, they should be ashamed.

- Dixon, CA, USA

problem #107

Mar 122015


  • 21,000 miles
The contact owns a 2014 Ford Focus. While driving approximately 65 mph, the transmission failure warning light illuminated and the vehicle started to hesitate and shake. The vehicle was brought to a complete stop and failed to shift into reverse. The next day, the vehicle was towed to the dealer. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 21,000. The VIN was not available.

- Newport Beach, CA, USA

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