Notes: Ford changed a lot of things for its 3rd generation, just none of them were a good idea.

The transmission tends to hesitate and jerk when accelerating. The new electronically-driven power steering can fail suddenly and without warning. Even Ford's SYNC can be a headache. Actually, scratch that last one --- it's always been a headache.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
36,721 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.

2013 Ford Focus miscellaneous problems

miscellaneous problem

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2013 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #59

Oct 032016


  • miles


Side door latching (safety recall) still not repaired. I have been to the dealer for two times already since Oct 2016 but they only say that parts are not available.

- Lakewood, CA, USA

problem #58

Dec 262016


  • 62,000 miles
Car has stalled while driving now 5 times in 9 days. The first time driving from denver to casper, I wasn't too far from home the steering assist service needed warning came on, and about 5 miles later I received a transmission service required warning, immediately followed by an engine service now warning and I completely lost power. In trying to restart the vehicle, I had all my lights and everything (including warnings), but no crank. When a nice person asked to push me to the shoulder at least out of the turn lane while waiting for a tow truck. The car started right up. Towed the car still to a Ford dealership, where I was told nothing was found and they couldn't replicate the problem. 7 days later. And about 250 miles from home on the interstate. The same thing happened. The car started about an hour later after the tow truck driver arrived to help. Was able to drive the car home, and again the following day the fold dealership told me just communication codes on the computer and unsure what the issue is. Today, the car did the same thing 3 more times in the span of 2 hours. Once I was stopping in the right through lane at a stop light with my daughter in the car when it stalled out. Noticed this time even though I had the car in park the dash read it was in drive. Had the ECM on the transmission replaced already in September. Right now it is back a the dealership as I do not trust this car with me in it, let alone my 2 little girls.

- Thornton, CO, USA

problem #57

Dec 262016


  • 76,000 miles
I was driving down the highway at about 60mph and the hood flew open shattering the window.the latch that was holding it down came loose and one side was not attached to anything. The top of the car was also dented. I had a windshield guy come to repair it and he said that this is the third Ford car that he has seen this happen to. Also I have two previous recalls on the car one for the passenger door latch and the other for the transmission control module. The hood coming up is a huge safety concern and could have caused a major accident. Also the hood is banged up so now that it will not close normal. And the hood joints cut the frame of the car.

- Haysville, KS, USA

problem #56

Oct 012016


  • 97,000 miles


The door no longer latched, they refused to fix if for 3 weeks. Then finally fixed it, when I went my seat belt also stopped latching and they refused to fix it, both driver and passenger seat belt stopped latching. They will not fix until in becomes and actual recall. I see many complaints about this.

- Kissimmee, FL, USA

problem #55

Nov 082016


  • 60,000 miles
I have had my pre-owned vehicle for 1 1/2 years and have had continuous issues with my trunk popping open randomly. It opens anywhere and at random times. I've had it open while driving down the interstate, which is a huge safety hazard, potentially having things from trunk fly out and hit another motorist. It has been looked at twice by baxter Ford in omaha, ne. They can never seem to find the issue or have it "duplicate" on their time. This definitely sounds like a manufacturer defect.

- Omaha, NE, USA

problem #54

Dec 152012


  • miles
I purchased a 2013 Ford Focus SE for my daughter back in 2012, and after a few months of driving the vehicle, she started experiencing some issues with the transmission/clutch. Whenever she stops at a stop light and tries to accelerate at take off, she feels jerking, and hesitation when driving. We took the car back to the dealership and was informed there had been issues with the vehicles dual clutch that was redesigned on the car. The clutch was replaced and deemed okay to drive per dealer. We picked up her vehicle and everything appeared to be running smoothly, until a few months later she started having the same issues. This time the car started to jerk more often and was getting worse. We took the car back to the dealership, car was placed on computer and we were informed by the service advisor that no issues were found. We were then sent on our way and were told that this would be an ongoing issue with this vehicle due to the change in the new clutch design. My daughter has had her vehicle for a little over 2 years now, and we are still going through this problem. The engine light is now coming on while she is driving. This vehicle is unsafe and could cause someone to get seriously hurt while driving in traffic. Something needs to be done to get these vehicles off the road, since the problem is not able to be corrected at our local dealerships. This is very frustrating and I feel deceived that this information was not provided at the time of purchase. I myself drive a Ford and never have experienced anything like this before, but I think after my experience with her car, I wont be returning to a Ford dealership anytime soon!!!

- Farmersville, TX, USA

problem #53

Oct 242016


  • miles


The powershift transmission contains one or more design and/or manufacturing defects that cause problems and unsafe conditions, including, but not limited to, suddenly lurching forward, delayed acceleration, and sudden loss of forward propulsion. The transmission has a very sluggish shift between the first and second gears and the upshift bogs down like the vehicle might stall and erratically shifting in second and third gear as well, continue to experience transmission defect, including, but not limited to, bucking, kicking, jerking, harsh engagement, and delayed acceleration and lurching. This is a serious matter that needs to be addressed before this defect causes fatalities.

- Nogales, AZ, USA

problem #52

Oct 052016


  • 84,000 miles
Problem with the transmission has a very delayed shift from 1st gear to 2nd gear and it is an automatic. Can hear the gears slip and grind when trying to change lower gears... especially going up any type of hill.could cause a wreck when pulling off a side street to main road or when going up a hill it can't almost feel like the engine is going to drop out the bottom of the car and the car to rolling backwards.

- Charleston, WV, USA

problem #51

Sep 052016


  • 50,000 miles
Many problems with this Ford Focus.1st problem I had was a year after I bought the vehicle the fuel pump was leaking.I notice because my car was parked and it smelled like gasoline inside the vehicle.2nd incident happened a year later. I was driving home from work when car just shut off on the road. I was so scared.I was in notion barely move to the side of the road on rt 50.that was so scary I could have died.I had to tow the car to get serviced at sheehy Ford. They gave me the car back again and it happened again on the road on my way to work. At that time I towed it again but to koons falls church.looked at the vehicle and didn't find anything either until I got upset and they told me to go for a test drive with the mechanic and it happened while on the test drive. The mechanic stated to keep the car running so he can plug in the machine that reads the problems on the vehicle. He also stated that once you turn of the car and you turn it back on that it would reset it self and that's why they didn't know that tcm or tmc control needed to be replaced. This was very scary for for the passed 3 weeks I have been dealing with a static /popping noise /sound that comes from the vehicle when I'm driving & when the vehicle is parked, the key is out the ignition.I took it to sheehy since that's where I bought the vehicle. They provide the worst service on the vehicle. Bcuz they had my car for 4 days and didn't provide me with a loaner and had the audacity to tell me that the master tech was on vacation and I would have to wait still with no loaner vehicle.the radio is completely off and they want me to pay out of pocket to fix has just given me problem after problem is manufactured problems.I had so many safety issues that scared shutting off on the road and now making loud popping/ static noise where I thought I might be electrocuted.

- Annandale, VA, USA

problem #50

Jan 012016


  • miles
I have heard there is a recall on the door latch on the back door. I have heard nothing from the company I bought the car from.

- Shawnee, OK, USA

problem #49

Sep 092016


  • 37,000 miles


One Dec 24 2015 driving down the freeway my car had full loss of steering, the engine light came on, the pedals stopped working and I nearly crashed the car. After pulling off the freeway I turned the car off and it would not start back up. Moments later I could start the car, I ran a vehicle health report to prove to Ford that something had happened. I then drove my car which was stuck in 1st gear to my destination. The steering was very heavy, the pedals were not working well at all. After leaving it parked for 30 minutes I turned the car on and the check engine illuminated, but the problems had cleared. This feature is very deceiving, as some may assume the car is now safe. I took the car in for repair, and they simply reprogrammed the car. I continue to this day to have transmission issues, and have had the clutch only replaced one time dispite bringing it to them constantly for repair. In January of this year my cars clutch and transmission failed, the car seemed to make a loud acceleration noise and then become forced into 1st gear. This made steering heavy or hard, & the pedals not work with the usual weight on them. I drove my car to Ford like this, stuck in 1st to show them finally that the whole time I knew something was wrong. My various other complaints of this vehicle include regular acceleration between 1st and 2nd gear, there is the standard shudder. In addition, my visiting family became stuck in the back seat with indoor latches not working - the child locks were off. I feel as though I was sold a "dud" car & that the salesperson lied to me about the transmission. If I had known it was an "electronically controlled manual car" I would not have purchased it. Now I can't get my car appraised, no dealer is willing to buy this car form me. Kbb states my current value is at around $9000 and 12 months ago I paid $16000, close to $17000 including financing

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #48

Feb 072016


  • 37,000 miles
The automatic transmission slips when shifting gears, most noticeably the lower gears but it has happened with higher gears on occasion. The automatic transmission also "spudders" or "chugs" when acceleration is applied, and does not matter how aggressively or gently the acceleration is applied, it still struggles, sometimes hesitating, or sometimes "chugging, " then usually slams violently into gear. These occurances are ongoing and are most prevalent when accelerating from a stop or from slow speeds.

- Milwaukie, OR, USA

problem #47

Jan 152015


  • miles
I was trying to trade in my car and when I came outside to start it up it wouldn't do anything and the car was towed to the nearest dealership. In addition, I have always experienced idoling and jerking when taking off which seems like transmission problems because I have had experience with that issue. Currently still have the same issues jerking and idoling when taking off. When my car experienced the electric problem was in 2015 and it had about 30 to 40,000 miles on it but the jerking and idoling have always occurred and I checked the recall before and they told me there wasn't a recall.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #46

Aug 202016


  • 44,500 miles
Rear door latch and locking system fails to latch or lock doors. Safety issue and cannot be driven due to doors not latching shut rear doors flying open.

- Myrtle Beach, SC, USA

problem #45

Aug 202016


  • 28,752 miles
Moon-roof exploded outward from fully closed position, traveling on I-5 N, 4:42pm sat 8/20/16 at dupont wa. Glass exploded outward and glass debris was witnessed exiting out and away from the roof through the rear view mirror. There were no vehicles in front that could have caused any road debris to cause an impact or chip or ding.

- Covington, WA, USA

problem #44

Jul 292016


  • 52,000 miles
Since the first week of purchase the car has had trans failure. It has been in and out of the shop at least 4-5 times for repairs with no avail.. the transmission shudders, makes loud grinding noises, stalls, loses power then violently jerks when accelerating. Because of this many times I have narrowly missed hitting other cars causing an accident. I drive everyday with fear and anxiety, this car is downright dangerous. To top things off, suddenly, my rear drivers side door will not stay shut, . it appears that the latch is broken even though I rarely if at all open or close this door. There are so many issues with this car. Ford should be ashamed for this atrocity they brought upon their customers.

- Coachella, CA, USA

problem #43

Jul 292016


  • 75,000 miles
Driver's side door latch, cannot shut door, had to hold it driving to the dealership. Huge liability exposure. I understand there have been numerous safety recalls, but was told by service this vehicle not one of them? excuse me, this is absolutely a safety issue. I have had several vehicles over the years, and never had this problem. Vehicle was bought certified used, we purchased best warranty, but this and a few other items not cover. I am appalled that something I consider a safety issue would not be covered. I work in the insurance industry as an adjuster. They want to charge us $482...

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #42

Jul 282016


  • 10,000 miles
The transmisson studers, grind, lags, and is unsafe. The car has done the sence ive had it and its been to the shop and was told to drive it and it will get better with time and guess what it gets worst. Heading to the dealer to let them look at the Ford Focus again Wednesday. I already know what im going to be told about the transmission but I cant help but thing how can Ford get away with selling a automobile to the public that has all of the issues that are unsafe and can get people that are or where Ford lovers hurt or even worst killed. Ford should atleast do a buy back for a poor product like some of there competitors have.

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #41

Jul 272016


  • 40,000 miles
When accelerating from first to second gear the car will shudder like it wants to stall. It seems to happen the most when there is any kind of extra weight in the car, when accelerating from a stop, and when going uphill. It will be fine for a while then all of a sudden it will do this every time I try to accelerate. The car only has 52,000 miles on it and definitely shouldn't have this kind of a problem

- Pawcatuck, CT, USA

problem #40

Jul 242016


  • 66,000 miles
Driver side door latch broke and door opened up while driving. I was forced to drive the vehicle while holding my door shut and clutch shifting in order to get it to the dealership. The first dealership was unable to service it until August 25th 2016 (red mccombs Ford West). So, I was forced to drive it 16 miles on the freeway to northside Ford in san antonio. Because it has exceeded the 36K mile warranty, the repair bill is quoted at just under $700 because the "door latch mechanism failed" and needs to be replaced. I'm blessed this did not happen while turning right or had it been the rear passenger door with a child. I've read many reports about failed door latches with Ford and not sure why this isn't being recalled and why Ford isn't willing to put the safety of their customers first. Not to mention $700 to replace a faulty door latch which put me at risk for a major injury. I hope no one is seriously injured until a recall is finally honored. I feel like a grave injustice has occurred with Ford's unwillingness to put myself and others' safety first. The vehicle is currently at the shop waiting on parts and them to be installed. I will have a statement once I retrieve my car.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

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