Notes: For the third year in a row, the 3rd generation Focus is experiencing massive transmission problems.

Most notably owners keep complaining about how there's bad hesitation and jerking when starting from a stop. This isn't the result of an old, worn out part. In fact, the average mileage it's reported to us is just over 15k miles.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
9 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
12,380 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.

2014 Ford Focus engine problems

engine problem

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2014 Ford Focus Owner Comments (Page 5 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #42

Feb 172014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 3,000 miles


2014 Ford Focus the transmission stutters, grinds and is very shaky. Upon acceleration its very jumpy and stutters and followed by a grind noise. I took the car into the dealership, they replaced all the individual clutches. They told me drive it a bit. The stutter has stopped a little but it still stutters and grinds. I tried to ignore this for a while because it is very inconvenient for your vehicle to be in shop. They should really make it standard for all Ford dealerships to provide a rental car if your vehicle is under warranty. I bought a new car so that there would not be any problems and now I am always having to bring it in. The second time I took it in they told me that they re programmed it. The third time I took it in they told me that they reprogrammed it again and a week later it is still happening. This is very concerning and unsafe. I do not recommend this care to anyone I know, nor will I.

- Mission Viejo, CA, USA

problem #41

Dec 302014


  • 1,250 miles
I was driving my vehicle thru a hospital parking lot with my father in the car going about 3-5 mph. I pressed the gas pedal and the engine reved high but car did not move. It was as if in neutral even though the car was in drive. Made an appt at the Ford service departmant, but a day before the appt I was pulling out of my neighborhood onto a main road when it "hesitated" so badly that I was almost tboned. Service said it needed a software update. They said that they recorded slippage and that with the update it should be fine. The car since then has continued to hesitate and shift roughly. It rolls back on hills not stopping until either momentum runs out or I press the brake. It has even gone backwards on a flat surface while ideling. I almost hit another vehicle! I have taken it in multiple times-- they tell me its all normal that I need to learn how to drive the car. That they can't duplicate the issue. While at the dealership each time several other Focus owners came in with similar problems. They refuse to help. They want to up my payments by 100 bucks just to swap to a safer car. I even spoke to a corporate manager. She did nothing except speak down to me. I finally sent in the official notice about claiming its a lemon. Something needs to be done.

- Pensacola, FL, USA

problem #40

Jan 092014


  • 12,000 miles
The vehicle has idle problems so I took it in 1 mount after I bought the car Ford said they fixed it but 2 mounts later same problem the car actually jumped speed all the sudden and ran into divider the bumper was wrecked I took it to Ford dealer in san jose they took the car in again I try to get another car because it's not safe but Ford denied me, I have so much issue with Ford vehicle I had 2 Ford diesel trucks with 6.0 engine I spent around 8,000 thousands dollars fixing it now my brand new car nothing but problem. I hurt my neck when I hit the divider but all I ask is Ford to back up there mistake on vehicles I also bought a new F150 that truck runs great back in 2001. I just don't want to drive that car no more it's very dangerous. Good thing my kids was not in the car that day.[xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- San Jose , CA, USA

problem #39

Jan 082015


  • 10,000 miles


The contact owns a 2014 Ford Focus. While driving 60 mph, the check engine warning light illuminated and the vehicle stalled. The failure recurred several times. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, but was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 10,000.

- Sebaspotol, CA, USA

problem #38

Jan 302014


  • 1,000 miles
I bought this car brand new. I'm a single mom with a tight budget so I was looking for a very dependable car. I started noticing acceleration problems after the first few weeks of buying the car. When I would go drive up the ramp on to the freeway, I wasn't able to speed up with the flow of traffic. This caused extreme safely issues as drivers would honk and get backed up because I wasn't able to accelerate. I also noticed a clicking sound when within the first few seconds of accelerating after a stop. It sounded like something was loose or broken in the engine. My mom came to visit after 2 months of having the car. She drove the car and said this doesn't seem right, take it in. So I brought it to my Ford dealer. I said this car does not drive safe. I don't feel safe driving with my 5 year old daughter. They said they would fix it at no cost. They had the car for 10 days. Once I got the car back, I still noticed some of the same problems, but the mechanic told me "it will take about 1000 miles more before the engine starts to run normal." That wasn't very satisfying to hear. Presently, I still have the car. It still has safety issues. I don't drive long distances in it, because I don't feel safe. I am very disappointed with Ford Motor Company. I've saved up hard earned money to have a dependable/safe car for my daughter and I and I have the exact opposite. I will never purchase a Ford again.

- Tampa, FL, USA

problem #37

Jun 162014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 100 miles
Car shudders on acceleration from a stop and jerks and lunges upon acceleration from a slowdown. Transmission slips gears and also hits a dead spot causing a lack of acceleration around gear 2-3. RPM's rev up with no acceleration and then drops quickly with a hesitation before a reduction of speed. Car can lunge when pressing accelerator when you don't want it to go that hard and the opposite happens on highway merges when you need the car to go and it won't due to the transmission bottoming out. Problems get worse the longer and farther you drive the car. Had at the dealer 3 times now, reprogrammed clutch last time but say the issues found are "normal" and that Ford made the transmission to do just as the problems state to make the car feel more like a manual than an automatic. This car is an accident waiting to happen and Ford isn't doing anything about it.

- Springville, IN, USA

problem #36

Dec 012014

Focus 4-cyl

  • miles


2014 Ford Focus SE has a hesitation on acceleration (perhaps transmission or engine computer) that has on multiple occasions while merging into heavy traffic, creating hazardous situation. The consumer stated several reprogram functions were performed by the dealer. The consumer stated frequently, on a cold start-up, when he shifted from reverse to drive the vehicle hesitated briefly as if it was not in the correct gear.

- Melrose, FL, USA

problem #35

Oct 152014


  • 1,500 miles
It started up around 1500 miles. The car would make a sound as if I was dragging plastic under it when I come to a stop or reverse. When I get on the freeway the car would rev to high rpms then it would slip like as if it missed a shift. I have a problem where I come to a stop and the car catches up with itself and lurches forward where I have to slam my breaks. When coming off a stop I really have to put my foot to the pedal to get the car up to 25mph. Seems to be a lack of power. I have taken it in to Ford already, they told me it would take up to 3 days. It was done the same day. They said they had to re-program the system. After they did this it seemed to accel and brake a lot better. It did not fix my grinding/rattling sound in the engine/transmission like I had told them it had. I told them it sounded like a shutter or clutch issue. Every where I look it says they are investigating the problem. They have been for the last 2 years on these models and still nothing. Its coming to a point im afraid to drive it.

- Henderson, NV, USA

problem #34

Nov 172014


  • 36,000 miles
I purchased my first brand new 2014 Ford Focus about the end of September 2013. Being that I was driving a prior clunker and then I started to drive this new fancy and exciting car, I figured I wasn't too familiar with driving something new! as soon as I drove it the transmission or as I say the front of the car would do a jerking almost like a whiplash type movement no matter what speed I was driving. I took the car into the dealership and they tell me that it needs to update the computer software. I immediately have the same issues after that car was returned back to me and when I took it in this time they now tell me I broke the cvt/ or the clutch" this car was sold as an automatic but I later find out that it shifts like a manual to save on gas??" I would have never purchased this vehicle if I was aware of this detail. My husband is now terrified for me to drive the car. I'm beyond disappointed in Ford and its ignorance to knowingly place the public in a potential dangerous situation and a financial problem as well. All my husband and I truly want is to be placed in a safe vehicle, especially since we have poured our hard earned money into a trusted company that is doing a good job with promoting a terrible reputation thus far.

- Midlothian, VA, USA

problem #33

May 162014


  • 5,000 miles
Car began to make a grinding noise when turning corners and when I'm driving slowly. It sounds also like I am dragging something, like tin cans. It also shudders when I press on the accelerator, almost like it is going to die. This is not a safe situation. The clutch on my car has already been replaced and the car is a 2014!

- Port Orchard, WA, USA

problem #32

Jul 312014


  • 4,000 miles


On 7/31/14, my Ford Focus hatchback accelerated while parking and crashed into a high chain-link fence. Significant front end damage to the vehicle was repaired. The airbags never deployed when I hit the fence and small tree and I was lucky that no one was near the car when it malfunctioned.subsequently, the car has been parked! I have tried to communicate with Ford Motor Co. By fax, letter and phone over the last 2 months.the dealership wants nothing to do with this car. We are reluctant to sell and want this car off the market. We have no voice. I continue to read all complaints on your site. When are you going to do anything about it! I can't put my grandkids in this car and I don't want anyone's child in this car.please call me. We need to get this car off the market before someone is injured or worse!

- Plainville, CT, USA

problem #31

Feb 282014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 1,000 miles
I bought my car new back in feburary 2014. It does all kinds of things!! it does not shift right. It jerks, slips, revs high. If you need to accelerate it doesn't ever gear down correctly, either too much or not enough. It has completely stalled at intersections and would not move. It would not even rev up. I had to have it towed. It has accelerated into traffic at a red light, twice!! and each time did not have brakes. My children were in the car and it was a near miss. My children could have been killed!! I have had it at my Ford dealership 5 times!!! yes 5 times!!! each time it runs fine and does not do anything wrong while they are checking it out. The manager of the service dept states it is like a smartphone and once you cut it off it resets so this is probably why they can't find anything wrong with it by the time they get to it. I do not feel safe driving this car. But it is my only car. I don't know what to do. My dealership state they cannot do anything. Help!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

- Ringgold, GA, USA

problem #30

Apr 012014


  • 7,500 miles
The transmission sputters when taking off from a dead stop. At a constant speed the car shifts into a higher or lower gear. Noises are made grinding noises when changing from 1-2-3 gears.

- Harrison, TN, USA

problem #29

May 142014

Focus 4-cyl

  • miles
The car has severe transmission issues I have almost been killed twice for being thrown out into traffic once and trying to pull out onto a busy highway. Stopping at a stop sign or red light is a nightmare, my car will stop fine, but when you go to take off it jumps and the transmission slips leaving you basically sitting in the middle of the high way barely getting anywhere then all of a sudden your car will take off and make you loose control. The rpms are all messed up if I'm driving down the road the RPM hand just dances all over the place this car is a death trap!! thanks Ford for ruining my life and sticking me with this true lemon of a car...

- Chatsworth, GA, USA

problem #28

Aug 202014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 1,800 miles
With car in cruise going down grade trans would down shift in lower gear causing car to slow and engine to over rev. Had to slow to 45 for trans to correct it`S self. Have also had issues with it in reverse jumping in and out of gear. It also jumps while at low speeds searching for the correct gear to be in.

- Rke, VA, USA

problem #27

Feb 252014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 200 miles
Hesitation and bucking while accelerating, grinding noise, and rough idle.

- Boynton Beach , FL, USA

problem #26

Aug 062014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 8,600 miles
Vehicle shudders upon starting forward movement or when slowing or stopping and then restarting forward movement. Downshifting into lower gear and then accelerating produces a shudder, severe loss of power, must accelerate heavily or vehicle continues to shake and shimmy while not accelerating. Feels as if the engine/transmission is going to shake out of the automobile.

- Summerdale, AL, USA

problem #25

Jul 312014


  • 4,000 miles
I was entering an eight-car parking area and decided to park a few feet ahead by a high chain-link fence. The car was almost to a complete stop and I was about to shift into park when I heard a "revving" noise from the engine. The car bolted. Braking hard, I slammed into the fence and small tree. The airbags never deployed.I sat stunned. Never experienced anything like this in all my years as a driver. I believe the car malfunctioned and there was a "sudden unexplained acceleration".fix this problem or take the car off the market!

- Plainville, CT, USA

problem #24

Aug 072014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 1,400 miles
I was at an intersection trying to cross the road and my car hesitate to go when pressing the gas. It wouldn't go at all I was very afraid. Then finally it went and starting jerking real bad. I took it to the bondy Ford in dothan al to get it check out because I am scared to drive it and the service was so rude they didn't offer me a loaner car and lie to me saying my platinum warranty didn't cover a rental car !!!!! wow I told the service guy that I will call my warranty customer service number then he reptile come in let me see what I can do I will call for you. He was so rude until he seen me getting very upset.

- Eufaula , AL, USA

problem #23

Jun 022014

Focus 4-cyl

  • 6,117 miles
The transmission on this vehicle is faulty and the vehicle stalls out at low gears. When you stop at a stop sign or stop light, turn the steering wheel on acceleration, or back the vehicle it stalls out and then the vehicle jerks/ shakes to get back into gear. It is terribly dangerous. Ford has now attempted to fix the issue on my vehicle 3 times and has failed to do so. My vehicle has had the transmission re-sealed and on a separate occasion they have taken my transmission apart to replace the clutch at just over 6500 miles. My vehicle is in the shop for the 3 time, returning with the issues that were allegedly "repaired". the vehicle will not go on acceleration, often times - in traffic - I have been almost ran over or rear ended by other vehicles. I shouldn't have to die first, before this issue is taken care of. I bought what I thought was a nice, new, reliable and safe vehicle.. it has turned out to be a lemon that can very well end up costing my life. Many consumers have this very popular vehicle, Ford is not alerting anyone to the problems they are selling these vehicles with. The vehicle stalls out going down the road.. and to an unsuspecting driver following behind me, I could end up rear ended and seriously hurt or killed. The reviews from other Ford Focus drivers make it obvious that Ford has tried and failed over and again to fix this transmission problem. Some reviews mention how the transmission have caused them accidents, when the vehicle suddenly jerked into gear causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle. Something must be done about this. How can Ford corporate get away with this?

- Rockville, MD, USA

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