Notes: The 2002 Ford Focus 2.0L SOHC engine has a defect where the intake valve seat fails. The valve then falls into the cylinder, destroying the engine & most owner relationships with Ford in the process.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
43,962 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.

2002 Ford Focus body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2002 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #9

Mar 012010


  • 120,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Ford Focus. The contact stated that the rear driver side door only opened when moved left to right. The contact also stated that the door would not open when unlocked. The failures occurred on several occasions. The VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 05V030000 (latches/locks/linkages). The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 120,000.

- West Jordan, UT, USA

problem #8

Jul 062013


  • 181,000 miles
I have owned this vehicle for five years and at about 180,000 miles I noticed that my rear driver door would not latch. Both rear doors stick and have been difficult to open. However, at about 180,000 miles the door latch stopped working completely. I had to wrap the seat belt around the door to keep it from opening while driving. After doing some research online I found that there is a recall on the 2002 Ford Focus door latches. I scheduled an appointment with my local Ford dealership but when they ran my VIN# they informed me that my car was not part of the recall. Even though I was experiencing the same issue that led to the recall they told me that I would have to pay to have the car repaired. They referred me to the Ford customer service line and after spending 45 minutes on the phone I was told to keep me receipts in case they issue a recall in the future. I am extremely disappointed that Ford didn't offer to fix my car knowing that there was a recall on other cars that are the same year, make, and model.

- Xenia, OH, USA

problem #7

Nov 162007

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Ford Focus. The front passenger side door will not open or unlock. The door is completely stuck. Through online research, the contact discovered several complaints, but no recalls. The powertrain was unknown. The failure and current mileages were 70,000.

- Henderson, NV, USA

problem #6

Mar 312005

Focus 4WD 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


Ford issued a rear door recall, which was not found at this time. Consumer contacted the dealer for repairs, but there were no available parts in order to do repair, which is dangerous because the doors could open unexpectedly.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #5

Jul 172003

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,500 miles
Severe creaking/rubbing sound coming from rear door on driver's side of vehicle. Noise occurs while driving at all speeds. Sounds as though door is out of alignment or improperly mounted. Dealer has attempted to diagnose and repair the problem on two occassions (4 days total out of service), and has been unable to fix. Dealer most recently stated that some creaking is normal due to flexing/twisting of frame of vehicle while driving. Creaking/rubbing, meanwhile, is getting worse.

- Gilbertsville, PA, USA

problem #4

Mar 152003

Focus 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 11,155 miles
While driving through a puddle, starter shorted and destroyed flywheel. Later it was found that water had gotten into transmission. In addition, a large amount of water was taken into the cab of the vehicle under the door seals. I was not stopped in the puddle, only moved through it. Due to the water incursion into the cab of the vehicle, the vehicle has been declared a total loss by my insurance. They fear electrical damage could result. I am concerned that anyone going through standing water (this was not a huge puddle) would find themselves with electrical problems that could result in injury.

- Hesperia, CA, USA

problem #3

Apr 212002


  • miles


The remotely controlled door locks spontaneously lock while the driver is outside of the car. This is a safety hazard. If there were small children in the car, or an elderly disabled person, the driver would be unable to get back in. If the car locked itself while a lone driver was in a dangerous desolate area, this too would be a hazard. I know of another woman who had the same problem with her Ford. Her dealer said that since her car was out of warranty, it could be fixed for $75. My dealer says there is nothing wrong, and cannot be fixed. My car is still under warranty.

- Broad Brook, CT, USA

problem #2

Jul 172002


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
While getting out of the vehicle with transmission in neutral and engine still running, driver's door had automatically locked, consumer was unable to gain entrance until spare key was used. Dealer and manufacturer have been notified.

- Point Marion, PA, USA

problem #1

May 012002


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
The original Firestone tires (205/50R16) wear out prematurely. The vehicle becomes unsteady on bumpy, wet or snow covered roads, causing the driver to lose control. The rear tires vibrate and chatter when driving on wind roads and on open roads at highway speeds, also the rear tires were showing irregular and premature wear. The manufacturer representatives stated that improper factory alignment specification were the cause of the problems. Auto door locks malfunctions. The rear hatch door was misaligned and would not close properly, the rear window washer would not spray properly and the rear window washer nozzle failed, there was an odor coming from heating or A/C system, the power steering line was leaking. The transmission was difficult to shift into 2nd gear and reverse when it was cold, the child restraint brackets was putting dents in the rear seat

- Haverhill, NH, USA

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