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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
5 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
41,734 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.

2012 Ford Focus electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 9 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #11

Jun 012012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 1,000 miles


When accelerating, whether from a dead stop or coasting, 1st, 2nd (& now starting to do it in 3rd) gears audibly rattle and clunk. Very slow response time when accelerating after car is "warmed up." The more it is driven in stop and go and/or city traffic, the worse the acceleration (and rattling when shifting) becomes. So much so that when trying to pull out into traffic on 09/04/12 I thought the car would be hit. I had 3 kids in the car with me! and I always allow plenty of time to pull out because of this issue. It has been a near constant issue with this car which was purchased in May 2011. Car jerks when accelerating in stop and go traffic and will sometimes "jump" and rev into a higher speed. All the above issues had been addressed and "fixed" twice before the "customer satisfaction" recalls were sent out in May. Issues are resolved for a limited amount of time and then start happening again. Car still rolling back when brake is released at a stop on slight inclines. Another "customer satisfaction" recall. Minor issues: Barely be heard when speaking on the "sync" system while driving *clock changes time randomly *rear defroster doesn't automatically turn off speed changes after car is turned off to a random speed setting *radio will change to a random station *sometimes* after making a phone call.

- Harper Woods, MI, USA

problem #10

Aug 092012


  • 100 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Ford Focus. The contact stated that all of the wires on the trunk lid were exposed. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who did not offer any assistance since they were unable to alter the design of the vehicle. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure who did not offer any assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 100 and the current mileage was 1,000.

- Mt Wolf , PA, USA

problem #9

Aug 082012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 16,100 miles
Vehicle started up but the display screen that is visible behind the steering wheel was black. Shut off vehicle and tried to restart but the vehicle would not start. Also, I had no headlights and could not shift into neutral but the radio worked. A week previously to this incident my date on the my touch system changed back to 4/20/2011 and the time was off by 2 hours previous to the current time. It eventually went back to the correct date and time by restarting the vehicle several times with a delay of about 5 minutes. This is the second time in a month that I had to have the vehicle towed in for repair.

- South Milwaukee , WI, USA

problem #8

Jul 072012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 15,169 miles


Vehicle started but ran very rough.turned off ignition and restarted and my touch screen came up but then every thing went black. Tried to restart but no ignition, no headlights no radio and could not even put it in neutral. Towing service had to jump battery to get it into neutral so it could be towed.

- South Milwaukee , WI, USA

problem #7

Jun 182012


  • 3,100 miles
Vehicle central locking system locked the car while parked with the keys in the ignition. Locksmith was called to force entry. Alarm did not activate when door was opened.

- Royal Oak, MI, USA

problem #6

Jun 242012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
Two incidents. While driving at a speed of about 25 miles per hour, the vehicle lost power and stalled on an arterial street. Traffic was light, and there was no danger to me or other motorists. The vehicle would not restart. Had the car towed to the dealer, and was told it was out of gas. The gauge had been reading 1/4 full at the time of the incident. The gauge continued to give false readings (moved from lower to higher amounts during the course of exhausting the fuel supply) over the next few weeks. Eventually the dealer diagnosed the fuel tank was warped, and replaced the tank. One week later, while driving the vehicle at night on an interstate highway approaching a major freeway system interchange, at a speed of approximately 60 miles per hour, the vehicle lost power and shut off, causing me to have immediately attempt to move across four lanes of moderately heavy traffic. This happened on a slight uphill incline, so the car lost forward speed very quickly. During the emergency maneuver, I was forced in front of another motorist, nearly causing an accident. The car was exhausted of fuel, but within ten minutes prior had shown a reading of 1/4 tank remaining. Immediately prior to the incident, the gauge needle was actually indicating 1/2 tank.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #5

Dec 072011


  • 350 miles


The contact owns a 2012 Ford Focus. The contact stated that while driving approximately 5 mph, the transmission began to hesitate in a jerking motion and the vehicle stalled. The engine restarted and the vehicle was able to resume. In addition, on a separate occassion the transmission warning indicator illuminated on the instrument panel for a few seconds. The failures occurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer eight times for the same malfunction. A diagnosis was performed in which a trouble code was not detected. The computer system, ABS, and drive train were reprogrammed more than one time. The failure persisted and the dealer was unable to resolve the problem. The manufacturer and dealer stated that the vehicle functioned as designed. The approximate failure mileage was 350.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #4

May 012012

Focus 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
2012 Ford Focus. Consumer writes in regards to engine, transmission, drive shaft and electrical system problems. The consumer stated the vehicle would jerk forward, hesitate and would not go into gear fast enough when changing lanes. The right passenger power window was slower that the driver's side, the door locks would not open properly. Updated 05/25/12

- Newark, CA, USA

problem #3

Feb 012012

Focus 4-cyl

  • 600 miles
While stopped behind red light all screen system, sync system, radio including sound system went black. Did not start over till next day in the morning and as soon as start the car errors after error came up for nav system, phone connection. Had to reset every thing. These errors are coming up every day. There will be risk of losing other system including air bag, power steering, break and other important system while this system going off. Took the car to dealer and service trained specialist told me that is my phone problem!!! after long drive when trying to take off car is shaking, there is big safety issue with seat belt. While driving, if for any reason unlock the seat belt there will be no warning light or warning sound that seat belt is off. If car is running and leave the car when you are back and start driving there will be no warning light and sound that seat belt is not in use and can drive all you want. After long drive while trying to take off car is shaking.

- Waterford, MI, USA

problem #2

Dec 042011


  • 1,596 miles
While backing out of a driveway the steering system failed, I rolled down a hill and into a wooded area. The system gave an indicator light of steering system failure and also the braking system did not engage. I lost complete control of the vehicle.

- Huntington, WV, USA

problem #1

Sep 012011


  • 2,500 miles
After a week of purchasing our brand new Focus started noticing the automatic tranny surges and slips. Like its bucking feeling. Sometimes it surges almost hard enough to put you on the dash. Kinda scary in traffic. Car has only 4500 miles on it and now has electrical problems in dash and upon going down the road you will vibrations like a bent axel or worn bearing. Its a new car!!!!!!!

- Mccarley, MS, USA

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