Print this page Notes: You should probably steer clear of the 2012 Focus. Otherwise, you might not be able to steer at all.

The 2012 is the first Focus to offer Electronic Power Assist Steering (EPAS). It's also the first year with massive power steering failure. These things are not mutually exclusive.

And while you wait for your steering to disappear, you'll be greeted with a transmission that shudders, vibrates or won't shift at all.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
66,100 miles
Total Complaints:
21 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace door latch (11 reports)
  2. not sure (8 reports)
  3. replace all 4 door latches (2 reports)
2012 Ford Focus body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2012 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #21

Jun 102018


  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,766 miles


I just want to have the problem resolved. I have to use a rope to secure the door because it will swing open while I am driving.

- Sandra B., Coral Springs, US

problem #20

Jul 092019

Focus SE 2.0L 4

  • Manual transmission
  • 63,850 miles

Yesterday my driver's door latch failed. I had my door latches replaced under the 2016 recall, so this is particularly annoying. I am taking the car to a local dealership tomorrow. I hope to convince them to replace the latch again at no cost to me.

I would like to add that despite the low ratings this car receives, this latch failure is only the second issue I have had with the car since I bought it new in 2012. The other issue was a passenger side window regulator which I had to replace in 2015.

All in all, my 2012 Focus SE is probably the best small/compact car I have ever owned. It gets good fuel mileage and while it is no powerhouse, it has more than adequate acceleration to "get out of its own way". The suspension and handling are also surprisingly good for such an inexpensive "low-end" vehicle. I take good care of it and keep up with routine maintenance, and the car has served me well.

I know this goes against the majority opinion on the car, but I can only base my judgement of the vehicle on my own experience, which has been overwhelmingly positive.

- jwaynes, Fork Union, US

problem #19

May 102017

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,408 miles


- Cindy S., Supply, NC, US

problem #18

Aug 012016

Focus SE 2.0L 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles


One door latch costs $575 to repair, should be on recall since no general mechanic could fix it - we had to take it to the dealership for repair. What if this happened to the other doors? How much money would we be out?

- Janis C., El Paso, Texas, US

problem #17

Aug 112016

Focus SEL

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,600 miles

I was leaving work and idling forward in the parking lot when my Front Driver side door started opening. I tried closing it multiple times but it would not latch. I had to tie my seat belt through the interior door handle and apply tension to keep the door from swinging open while I attempted to drive to a dealership. I found a Ford recall ( but apparently my VIN is not listed as one of the affected ones, so I will have to pay for this out of pocket until Ford accepts this. Ironically, the link above states:

"Dealers will replace side door latches at no cost to the customer. In addition, Ford will launch a corresponding customer satisfaction program for vehicles outside the scope of this recall. If a vehicle exhibits a broken door latch, Ford will provide a one-time replacement at no charge for the life of the vehicle."

However, both dealerships I went to would not honor that last sentence because it was only on the website and not listed on my VIN.

- Keegan B., Manvel, TX, US

problem #16

Aug 122016

Focus SEL 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles

door will not latch very dangerous. not secure, lucky it happened at home

- Art P., Alma, GA, US

problem #15

Aug 242016

Focus 4 Cyc

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,000 miles


I have three doors on my ford focus 2013 that do not latch. The drivers door flew open when I driving and almost wrecked my car and when I took it to Ford they told me there is no recall and I would have to pay over 500 dollars to fix my drivers door and when they where working on it the driver side rear door broke and they would not fix it without me forking out cash and they let me leave with a door that kept swing open until I could secure it. Then today the passenger door flew open and I almost drove into a ditch. This was very scary and when I called Ford they basically told me to bad and I would have to wait until Jan 2017 in order to have the doors fixed under the recall that shows on Fords Website for my car. At this point I cannot secure my car because the doors will not stay shut and Ford does not car about my safety or security of my property. Does it take someone dying before they do anything.

- Jakob H., Qu, AZ, US

problem #14

Aug 072016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 62,000 miles

My rear door won't close. My family and I were on the way to the funeral home when my daughter told me her door wouldn't close. After talking to the Ford dealership, they say bring it on in and we will replace all 4 latches as part of a recall. After I drop it off, they call to tell me that sorry but my VIN# isn't part of the recall even though it is the same part that continues to fail and is being replaced on other vehicles. I called Ford and talked to a representative that told me their hands are tied because NHTSA hasn't issued a recall on my vehicle. Only explanation I have been given so far was that could have been anything from my vehicle was made on a different day of the week to being made in a different location. Now, the dealership can fix my one door that has already failed for a ridiculous five hundred dollars. I guess I'm just taking my life and my family's lives in my own hands every time we risk the other doors flying open. Meanwhile, five hundred dollars isn't just pocket change to me so I'm surviving at the moment with my door held closed (sort of) with bungie cords.

- butchertn, Ethridge, TN, US

problem #13

Jul 222015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I had to drive with one hand while holding the door shut with the other.

- ousideproduction, Waco, TX, US

problem #12

May 012016


  • CVT transmission
  • 55,000 miles

I own a 2012 Ford Focus which has had issues with the passenger side rear door since April of 2016 roughly. Randomly, the Driver's notification center (Information Message) would show the rear passenger side door was ajar while the vehicle was initially being started & that same day while the car was in motion. Note, I use the car only for myself & rarely ever use that door as I do not have children & usually have only 1 passenger if any. Only a couple of days later, the door itself would FLY OPEN--regardless whether the car was "in park", being "revered" or being operated in traffic, whether locally or on longer distanced travel...HIGHLY DANGEROUS, LET ALONE DISTRACTING & UNNERVING. I called my local ford dealer(s) & was told that my car's VIN was not covered or been involved in any kind of recall for such problem, even though there were several thousands of other Ford Focus vehicles which were covered.I literally had to operate my car which I need daily for work, & school with the seat-belt located in the rear rightside of my Focus bound around the arm handle as to avoid having the door fly open. By this point, the door would no longer latch or close at all. Even securing my car at night was impossible. If I locked the car, the alarm would randomly blare at all hours of the morning causing me & my neighbors to panic. Meanwhile I would have to run to find my keys to deactivate the alarm. For a couple of months my car had to be parked unlocked every night because of this faulty latch. Despite attempts to have my Ford Dealer help with this concern, no one ever called me back from Autonation Ford in Sanford FL or from Greenway Ford in Orlando. My immediate family has owned Fords since I was a child & between us currently have 3 Ford vehicles. However this particular 2012 Focus is 1st car & I must say I am extremely disappointed.

- Denise & Alexandra F., Lake Mary, FL, US

problem #11

Sep 042015

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,170 miles


I had just driven 2 hours out of town. When I started to head back home, the back driver side door latch broke. My grandson was in the back seat. I had to find a rope, tie the door off and drive 2 hours listening to the door alarm ding all the way home. I had to schedule an appointment to bring the car in so I actually had to drive around for over a week with 2 ropes holding my door shut. Every time I made a right turn I had to reach back and pull the door tight.

Once my appointment arrived I took it in to get it replaced. Apparently the mechanic didn't see the ropes tying the door shut...he fixed the wrong door. Then I had to wait for another appointment to get the right door fixed. He said well I had the part for the passenger back door so I fixed it, since it was already bound up and ready to snap.

I paid $2000 for an extended warranty and I had to pay $100 deductible for the door that broke, they did not charge me for fixing the wrong latch. Within 6 months the Driver door latch broke, I had to rent a car (which they did not charge me for) for a couple of days until they fixed the driver side door and I had to pay another $100. Now there is a recall, so I called them and asked if I could get my money back. I was told that technically there isn't a full blown recall but if I want to supply my receipts they will submit the request, but until it becomes a "recall" there is no refund. I am not a happy Ford customer at all!!

- cynthiacurtis, Bakersfield, CA, US

problem #10

Sep 112016

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,000 miles

A year or so ago, the driver's side door latch wouldn't stay closed. I had to bungee cord it the whole weekend across my lap so it wouldn't open while I was driving! I went to the FORD dealer and they estimated the repair cost at over $700!! and a week to fix. I went to a Meineke and they fixed it in 3 days for $600 + which I had to pay all at once and had to ask my sister to help me pay for it which was totally embarrassing and humbling and I had to wait over an hour and a half for her to pick me up when I dropped the car off. Got the car back and it's been fine since. I heard a month or so ago that there was a recall for the door latches for my car's year and model. I will look up the bill from Meineke and get my money (and my sister's money) back for the repairs. AND possibly get all 3 other doors fixed for free?? I don't know. This morning, September 12, 2016, I got in my car and the little picture showed the back door was open. I got out and opened and closed it again and guess what??!! The door won't latch!! So I got in the back and seatbelted it closed and drove to work an hour with the damn alert bell going off every 3 seconds. Good thing the radio is working!! Guess I've gotta go back to FORD and be without my car for 3 weeks-since it takes a week for them to change one...they probably won't let me loan a car either. I wonder how I'll get to work...

- Sharon C., Katy, TX, US

problem #9

Aug 122016

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 107,000 miles

I used the key to unlock the doors. The back left door opened but then would not shut. Tried everything, finally had to tie the door to the headrest. That only prevented the door from swinging open while driving but the light inside roof light would have to be turned off every time I got in the car. Also at night if the door was not fully pulled tight, the park lights would not go off.

- Gayle M., Columbus, GA, US

problem #8

Jul 162016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

Driver door will not latch closed. The door was fine one day then last Saturday it would no longer latch closed. I can move the mechanism on the door but it will not stay latched.

- Randy D., Conroe, TX, US

problem #7

Jul 122016

Focus SE 4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,564 miles

My Ford Focus is in great condition but the door wont latch. Had to tie it close to drive home.

I went to the dealership and they want to charge me 165.00 to diagnose the problem .... hint, hint dumb ass the door wont close!!!!!

The dealership said there was no recall on my vehicle but I don't agree it was working just fine and then I am driving home and the door swung open on the freeway thank goodness I had a seat belt on!

I am so frustrated!

- perezrosemary, Houston, TX, US

problem #6

Jul 102016

Focus 2.0

  • Automatic transmission
  • 52,700 miles

My 2012 focus has been nothing but problems since i bought it. 2 recalls. A/C shutter that does not work. Power window that will not open. No power steering at all and now a door that will not close.

This car is a lemon. I bought Ford because it was American made. But now that i have all these problems Ford could care less. They basically got their money and have numerous consumers driving in unsafe vehicles. Worse yet they know of these problems and are choosing to do nothing about it. I was told blatantly by the Ford dwaler that I should have taken the extended warranty so when things lime this happen I'm covered. Wow really. People buy in good faith. I'm still paying on my car. How does Ford expect people to drive a car with a door that will not close. You cannot.

I have made several attempts to conact Ford and have not had any luck. I received an email telling me i need their certified mechanics to look at the car because I am out of warranty. Also said I'm responsible for the diagnostic fee of $125. Wow. Not very customer froenndlyfor a company who prides themselves on customer satisfaction. I can honestly say I am very unsatisfied and Ford could care less cause they have my money. They simply wash their hands of any and all problems but say they are #1 in customer satisfaction. Maybe the need to put their money where their mouth is and own up to the fact that they produced a lemon of a car. They need to offer to consumers to have repaired at no cost to the consumer or deal to trade in. Make it right don't ignore the problem

- Diana R., San Antonio, TX, US

problem #5

Jul 032016

Focus SE 2.0L I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 39,990 miles

Happened out of nowhere, can't close the driver door. Recall these garbage latches!!! UGH!

- Krystle M., Dallas, TX, US

problem #4

Mar 052016

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles

broken door latch

My driver door opened without warning as i was driving. That could of caused an accident.

- Marlon M., West Palm Beach, FL, US

problem #3

Apr 102016

Focus S 2.0L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,490 miles

I really like my Ford Focus overall. It climbs hills at or above the speed limits & gets 40 + M.P.G.on the highway. but this door latch problem is making me feel that I can't trust this car on any more long trips.This is the second door latch to fail, but I don't have the date & mileage when the first one broke.I can probably get that information from my auto mechanic friend on my next day off work.I feel this is the exact same thing that the other Fords were recalled for & can't understand why the Focus isn't ( yet ) included in the recalls since it is the EXACT SAME PROBLEM.I was thinking about getting a Ford Fusion, but it has the same cheap door latches.Come on Ford, you can do better than this.My 2002 Ranger still has the original door latches & has been very reliable.Then you quit making them. Why ? A full size F-150 is nice, but too big for my needs.I will not go foreign, I made that mistake once & never again.Thanks

- Albert T., Phoenix, AZ, US

problem #2

Sep 122015

Focus SEL

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,394 miles

On Saturday September 12 2015 opened the right rear passenger door to put kids in car. Went to close door and it would not latch shut. Mechanism will go up and down but will not lock in place. I now have the door secured with seat belt.

On Monday September 14 2015 as I'm driving the driver door came open. Now I can only get it to stay shut sometimes. This is a major safety defect and Ford refuses to recognize it. Ford has had recalls on other models but not the Focus despite numerous complaints. Ford should replace all latches at their expense before someone gets seriously injured.

This is not normal wear and tear this is poor quality on Fords part. A vehicle that is 3 years old with 51000 miles should not have doors flying open. How can they not own up to this serious safety defect?

- Blane G., Peoria, AZ, US

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