definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
20,350 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.

2001 Ford Focus steering problems

steering problem

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2001 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #11

Oct 102006

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles


Key can not turn ignition cylinder. This is the issue every time I try to start the car.

- Rocky River, OH, USA

problem #10

Jun 042005

Focus 2-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
My 2001 Ford Focus ignition swith has locked up leaving my car completely out of service and me stranded, the sterring wheel as well as everything else locks up. This has happened 10 times three times resulting in towing and complete removal and replacement of the ignition switch. Ford has done nothing except replaced the problem part each time resulting in failure again. It is also not covered under my extended warrenty.

- Mansfield, OH, USA

problem #9

May 202005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 0 miles
I don't think that the problem that I am having is life threatening. My problem is as folllows: I purchased a 2001 Ford Focus ZX3 and for some reason this particular car has a problem that the steering wheel locks by its self. About 2 years ago it happend for the first time and I had to have tow truck take it to the service department since it was still under warranty. The problem is back again and I no longer have warranty on my car. I just think that there should be a recall for this particular problem that this car has. After reviewing other people that own a Ford fucus and that have the same problem I really believe that a recall is necessary because this is a manufacture defect. Anyways, I went to the service department to see if they could fix the problem without charging me since the car had the same problem before when it was under the warranty. But they said that since it happen about 2 years ago they couldn't do it under the warranty. I wanted to know if anyone in your deparment could have any information on warranty. I just think that why should I have to pay for something that is a manufactur defect and that this problem happen before and they should be able to fix it at no charge.

- Dumfries, VA, USA

problem #8

Mar 232005

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles


I own a 2001 Ford Focus. The ignition key tumbler has been replaced twice in the last year.

- Coon Rapids, MN, USA

problem #7

Dec 032004


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
I walked to my car one evening after catching up with some friends. When I went to start the car I could not turn the key to start the ignition. The enitre steering column locked up including the brakes. Not only did I had to have my car towed to the nearest Ford dealership, but it was not covered under my warranty. The dealership replaced my "ignition lock". when I went to pay for the work, the cashier said that they have to replace at least one "ignition lock" a day at the dealership. Now my radio has been shorting out. I called the dealership that worked on my car and they said that there is no correlation between the two problems.

- West Newton, PA, USA

problem #6

Nov 282004


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Steering wheel locks when key is put in the ignition. The ignition switch and clock spring were replaced twice before. Vehicle will be taken to dealer for repairs again.

- Detroit, MI, USA

problem #5

Oct 052004


  • miles


Key will go in ignition, but will not turn. Steering wheel is locked, gear shift is locked.

- Cypress, TX, USA

problem #4

Sep 282004


  • Automatic transmission
  • 22,500 miles
Ingition switch stuck and will not turn at all to turn on the car.

- Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #3

Jun 182004

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,150 miles
This morning when we were starting our Ford Focus it would not allow us to turn the key.the ignition was locked up.you cannot do anything when that happens.we found out that Ford is well aware of this inherent defect in the ignition system in the Focus but has never recalled them for it. All locksmiths and other mechanics can no longer buy ignition switches from Ford to rectify the problem and Ford service centers want an arm and a leg to do the work from $169- just unde R$300 if they have to drill it out.this can be dangerous if it fails in a bad spot and you get stuck.it is very unsafe for women who have to drive alone somewhere or say someone with small children who gets stuck on the highway or anywhere on either a hot day or cold day as nothing will work.you need to have the vehicle towed.we were lucky in tha tmy husband kept at it until it did work;but have heard it can happen anytime, anywhere again;and tha tsome people who had theirs fixed had it happen more than once.I have high blood pressure and if it happened to me when alone it would make that skyrocket, endangering my health.Ford is well aware of the defect and they admit it can happen in any Focus.they will not recall it unless your dept pushes them to do this.

- Cumberland Furnace, TN, USA

problem #2

Nov 172003

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles
Ignition key didn't turn on my Ford Focus 2001 at November 2003. Mileage was 42,000 at that date. I've spent half of hour to leave my field work place. Because of repair is too expansive, I've bought a new ignition lock cylinder for $84 and drilled oldone by myself.

- Lowell, MA, USA

problem #1

Apr 042003

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 20,201 miles
Focus ZX3 has 20,000 miles, steering column locked, entire ignition locked, couldn't turn key, had to be towed and took a day to repair. This is the second time this has happened.

- Chino, CA, USA

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