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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
7,584 miles
Total Complaints:
19 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (12 reports)
  2. ford should refund my car (7 reports)
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2014 Ford Focus transmission problems

transmission problem

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2014 Ford Focus Owner Comments

problem #19

Aug 012016


  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,078 miles


I really like my car but this noise is not exactly what you would expect from the segment it belongs to.

- , Guadalajara, Mexico

problem #18

Apr 112016

Focus SE Hatchback 2.0L L4 Dohc 16v

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles

This is just getting ridiculous.

- , Portsmouth, NH, USA

problem #17

Dec 022015


  • Automatic transmission
  • 13,000 miles

They say it is supposed to run like this. Yet they trick you because it doesn't start running like this until 10,000 miles. No fix for this. I have had it in three times. Runs better for a week then back to hesitating, grinding, vibrating. Who wants to pay 5 more years on a car like this?

- , Walbridge, USA

problem #16

Dec 152014

Focus 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles


Started the grinding, halting, jerking sensation shortly after purchasing the car. took it back, they "reprogrammed it" and it did nothing. Complained about it every time I have gotten the oil changed. Nothing changes. Complained to the manager and general manager. No response. The dealership said they would be glad to accept it back on a trade it except that they claimed the value of the car was thousands less than what I just paid for it. Drove Fords all my life. Never again. I expect that Toyota will find a way to park two new trucks in my driveway in the next few years.

- , Chambersburg, PA, USA

problem #15

Apr 302014

Focus Titanium

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,000 miles

The dealer replaced the clutch but it didn't solve the problem. But now the dealer says the slippage is less than the tolerance level. Complete BS

- , Laurel, MD, US

problem #14

Mar 282015

Focus 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 27,000 miles

5th trip same problem, 5th trip ignored! service: you are wrong, car in-spec go away. Service warns me, Mfr, Ford telling Service mgrs to follow a different procedure when hearing complaints from Focus & Fiesta owners with transmissions complaints.

Quote Napa Victor Villegas 707-255-2580: Do Not Drive the car to Verify the problem, instead go to website to see if programming updates exist and program accordingly, if car is In Spec, meaning the amount of click, click, click, or revolutions they see is In-spec. If not, reprogram and give car back. DO NOT Waste your time test driving car afterwards. Also, please note, this problem is re-occurring and will come back within a few months or every 5,000 miles, as the fluid dries up the gears make more noise and need more fluid and reprogramming. It never goes away. PLEASE DO NOT BE MAD AT US, we are only doing what Ford mandates us to do.

Note: click, click, click, is the amount of attempts the tranny engages back and forth to see if it can shift properly, the grinding noises is what the consumer hears when they are Forced to drive this car 905 of the time between 0 and 20, which is prime commuting mphs's.

Lemon law lawyer WilliamMcGee 858-485-9332 says Yes, they are doing this more and more, I said why doesn't my opinion matter? He said Ford thinks we are the Little people and will accept the grinding noises as Ford as being normal and OK, and this is 100% wrong.

I traded my Shelby for this car, and it still did not matter!!

- , Napa, CA, USA

problem #13

May 162014

Focus 2.0L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 11,300 miles


This car makes a terrible grinding, rattling noise when turning corners or sometimes on straight aways. The noise started at about 5000 miles....I had only had the car for 6 months! I complained to the service dept and they said that there is a problem with the clutch system and that Ford has sent out letters notifying people of the problem. He asked if I got a letter and I told him no. He said that the problem doesn't exist for the 2014 model but I told him it most certainly does. He ordered a new clutch and they replaced the "old" one, which he said was in really bad condition. I told him that the car is only a year old! I told him I am very unhappy with this car and asked him if I should expect the same noise again. His answer was yes.

This type of issue should have been told to me when I bought the car! If I knew that the noises I am hearing were to be expected, I would have never bought it.

- , Port Orchard, WA, USA

problem #12

Mar 082014

Focus 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 400 miles

Mar 2014 traded in Shelby GT500 (yes a Shelby) for brand New Focus Titanium from James Ford, Half Moon Bay. They got my money, so guess what, they feel they don’t have to do anything else with me and the LEMON Focus they sold me, and refuse to help me in any way whatsoever, except call me a liar and kept saying they did US a favor! The Salesman Lacy, didn’t even test drive the car, ie: lazy. I am on Incident # 3, and I believe # 4, 5 & 6 are forthcoming.

First one, immediately off the dealer lot, 400 miles (GM, Jim Brent says it's my fault, called me a liar) (Owner Bob Jamison has not returned any emails or calls) Second: 17,669 miles Third: 19,500 miles Focus repairs take 7 – 10 days to fix , and rent-a-car is NOT covered, so I must pay out of pocket. Ford is choosing NOT to cover it, and even worse, blaming the owners. This is Not what I signed up for. The nice parts lady at Napa Ford, Stephanie, has this same car, same issues and is extremely worried even she won’t be able to get this car fix properly. She hates it too. When I press the gas pedal, I don’t think I should have to hear the transmission aluminum grinding first!!!

My wife and I stay up nights trying to figure out how to get out of it, it’s that bad. We have no faith in this car. Over the weekend went to Santa Cruz 400 mile round trip and my wife now never wants to step foot in the car as a driver or a passenger. We are afraid of what the car is going to act like and if the gas pedal is going to get confused with the transmission, hesitate, stumble and HOPE the car will kick in, not know exactly if it will or in order to get the car moving properly, just how much extra gas we might have to step on the pedal to get clear, and out of it own way. No Faith at all.

I can duplicate the problem every time, just press on the gas pedal and wait. Seriously. Do you hear the gas first? Or the transmission first?

I did a pole: Budget rent-a-car says the same problems are happening in Focus & Fiesta. Ford is also sending out bulletins to Dealers to teach us the owners about the transmission noise, that this is a normal thing for these transmissions, and we must adjust. I enjoy driving, want to feel safe in my cars, but we can’t here. My enjoyment is gone.

Bottom line: This transmission is NOT normal, please STOP saying that. If you drive this Ford, you will HATE Fords forever. Please recognize this grinding noise as a PROBLEM! And stop saying I personally have to adjust my driving habits and turn UP the volume on my radio so I won’t think about it.

I rent Focus all the time, this aluminum grinding problem is NOT happening to their Focus’s, just mine.

Show of HANDS: How many people heard these noises FIRST from the car, and continued to accept and Buy this car? Saying that NEW noise is normal? I'm guessing ZERO!

Lastly, the Engineers who built this car with this transmission must have stock in Chevy cause after you own this car, you’ll never buy Ford again. Please stop giving me the attitude, I honestly never signed a piece of paper saying I would be OK with this. Never!

Update from Dec 12, 2014: Ford Focus hater, now Ford hater.
now on incident # 3a, Work order still open, they diagnosed it, but can't fix mine, parts on back order until Feb 2015. Forced to take dangerous chattering annoying car back, they'll call when parts come in.
Forget calling Ford Customer Relationship Center, they are liars too, I waited 2 months just to get a response back, the response back is you are an idiot, and this IS normal? You the consumer are wrong! Deal with it! We need to teach you how this tranny is supposed to work. Seriously? I asked Ford to Buy-back the car, because it does not pass MY standards for safety for me and my family, it is that bad. I waited 2 more months, I got no calls or emails back, then I got a Fed ex’d a Form Letter from FORD, "DO NOT QUALIFY LETTER - rev 05/07/2010". it had NO DATE at the top, just my vin and a statement saying No and that I am wrong. YES, a form letter with my vin in it, dated 2010, and no date at the top, how many people have received this Form letter? Thousands! WE DON'T STAND A CHANCE, so I filed a Lemon Law law-suit. Actions speak louder than words, and Ford is telling us we are wrong in a form letter from 2010! Actual Form letter: Date: this letter is not dated Subj: My VIN To: Consumer Ford Motor Company appreciates your recent contact to the CRC. We have reviewed your concern and find it does not meet the eligibility requirements under California Lemon law. At this time, your file has been closed at Ford and no further action will be taken. If you have concerns or questions please contact (800) 392-3673. Form letter rev: 05/07/2010 Dec 11, 2014: Trust? My Trust with Ford is gone. The salesman at the dealership Lied to me saying he would fix it, then pleads the 5th and says its FORD’s problems please call them.
Their service dept says, “this is Normal”. Ford Executives state this noise from the tranny is normal. I found myself Yelling at him to Stop saying that is normal. If this is Ford’s Normal, I now know they are Liars! And I can’t buy another Ford, plane and simply, you can *#! me once, but you can’t *#! me twice. My brain is now questioning what is normal and what is safe, am I wrong? Did I make a safe choice for my family? Ford thinks we are stupid! When I listen to the next ford salesman, I Know this, HE IS LIEING!

Update from Dec 15, 2014: James Ford is an Authorized seller of Lemon Law cars, which car is the lemon? They definitely know, but its more fun to make you guess. We promise if this happens it is totally legally, there is nothing you can do to hurt us and we have every right to sell these cars, Ford backs us all the way.

Sign here: ______ Honest consumer!

Yes, we make a profit on your loss!!

- , Napa, CA, USA

problem #11

Jan 022014

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 2,485 miles

Very annoying problem, especially when you get no answers for a permanent fix. The car jerks and makes a grinding noise from a stop to second gear, also some problems when passing at highway speeds. My father had a 2013 Focus with the same problem, he traded it in because the problem was not fixed by Ford. This is my first new car and will definitely make me think about buying another Ford product!

- , Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada

problem #10

Sep 012014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,000 miles

OK so the service department can not guarantee me a vehicle to get me back and forth to work if I drop off my car--this is the second time they said they can't help me with a loaner--however I Told them I do not feel safe diving my new vehicle

It feels like I have a stick shift--I have an automatic

it "jerks" sometimes while I pull out and this makes me nervous in traffic

it also feels like its going to stall

sometimes while turning it makes a grinding noise

they ACE MOTORS do not seem concerned about it

- , Brooklawn, NJ, USA

problem #9

Mar 312014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,000 miles


I brought the car back into service department after leasing it in Feb 2014--I was told this is a normal feeling---it felt like it was shifting--they said it is the new engine--they feel like that so of course I believed them since they were the service department. Now its Sept and im returning to service department

- , Brooklawn, NJ, USA

problem #8

Sep 222014

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles

bought car six months ago...hadn't even had oil change yet only 6000 miles took to 3 different dealerships before finally getting an answer about clunking noise and shift issues they did a programming update made it worse now having to replace the clutch.... manual automatic transmissions what a bunch of junk haven't liked car since day one sign of future problems to come I am sure. I also have an issue with oil leaking around valve cover on front of engine and on top off the valve cover somehow oil sitting not a lot but for a new car why is ford saying their standard is as long as its not dripping its not a leak???? what the hell they said seeping is normal... why is it so hard to find a dealer that sticks behind there product instead of always sayings its normal up to this point,whatever never buy another focus or likely a ford again trade this one out asap but I heard no one wants to trade in for these probably lose a couple grand in the process of refinancing thru dodge ... dart looks nicer every day!!!

- , Buckland, OH, USA

problem #7

Jul 012014

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 5,200 miles

In addition to slipping gears, which makes acceleration unpredictable, the transmission grinds regularly, at times loud enough to drown out my music. This particularly happens at slow speeds or when trying to go up a hill. I was aware that this was happening in 2012, but I thought Ford fixed it after having 3 years to do so. Shame on me for having faith in them. At this rate I do not expect the transmission to last long.

The dealer has acknowledged the problem, but has simply refused to fix it. I would presume that the problem is unfix-able or would require a re-engineered transmission, and they are just hoping I will go away. They would not even bother themselves to help me get through to someone at Ford Motor Company. I spoke to Ford's national service line several days ago and was told I would be called back in 1 business day, but still no response.

My only hope now is lemon law protection, or taking them to court over refusing to honor the warranty.

- , Harrisburg, PA, USA

problem #6

Jun 032014

Focus Titanium 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 106 miles

I just bought a ford focus 2014, received it 2 days ago, and already want to sell the car. The car makes a lot of noises, grinding and crunching sounds, there is a problem with its transmission, one minute the car pauses, the other it just accelerate at once uncontrollable.

I took it already to the dealer, and they said it normal, that's the way it is...I cant believe it.

We have been ford customers for over 15 years, we have had an two expedition, an explorer, and two escapes. We have never had any problems, we have been always satisfied with ford cars.

* I don't think all these noises are normal, nor should a new car make such noise.

* I also don't think it is safe, as its pauses and accelerates on its own on situations where an accident can not be avoided.

* I want to be refunded fully, I cant keep using this car and take risks.

- , Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

problem #5

Aug 012014

Focus SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 21,000 miles

I get this grinding noise sometimes with I make a turn or sometimes even when I start to accelerate. I asked Ford about it and they said they heard it once but they couldn't hear it again to tell what it was. I still don't know WTF! They brushed it off as nothing to be concerned about.

- , Inwood, WV, USA

problem #4

Mar 212014

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 280 miles

6 days after I bought the car i started hearing the noise. Grinding wait, sounds like a aluminum cans being crushed, well I don't really know the exact words to describe it. (Freaking' annoying!) The noise happens at slow acceleration; between 15-21 mph. With my car it doesn't matter if am driving it uphill or on flat roads, making a right or left turn as long as I drive it slow I hear it. Clutch slipping? Oh hell yeah! After I make a full stop, a light tap on gas pedal and it would skid. Freaked me out the first time it happened! Thank goodness there's no car in front of me.

My car is in service right now for the fourth time! I just received a call from the service advisor, I was told that whatever noise i hear is normal characteristic of the car. (What?) A brand new car making unwanted noise is normal? Was the car designed to make that noise in the first place? I guess so.

- , Daly City, CA, USA

problem #3

Nov 152013

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 800 miles

Similar to others grinding noise , clutch is slipping . Very bad in the beginning , grinding noise is coming just because the clutch is slipping . It is very annoying to drive this car in the city or on the HWY , Will you pass someone with a slipping clutch ? will you turn somewhere quick like right on red ? no . Is that safe ? no

Ford has its opinion , sounds like soon all cars will have a slipping clutch soon and that is normal

After TBS update its little better but not enough . Your car is learning the way you drive !!!! mmmmm How often have yo seen a dry clutch doing better after it slips , never !!!!

2014 Ford focus noticed the problem at 700 miles . Oil leakage maybe the problem , many people said that it is fine after seals replacement in the begging but not after . I am very mechanically included guy and I am thinking that there is something is wrong about the transmission shafts or crankshaft , no matter how many seals they will install , if those mentioned above are bent, not machined correctly or have a play the seals will always leak . In the result the oil will contaminate the clutch .

Please if u are the same as me and many other file a complain here and at

Do not let them go away about that .

- , Bountiful, UT, USA

problem #2

Oct 182013

Focus SE 2.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 856 miles

Bought a great looking car 10/09/2013. I thought I was smart, took two weeks to make the right purchase. 10/18/2013 took it in for a grinding sound when car shifted gears, sounded like a manual transmission shifting from someone NOT KNOWING HOW TO SHIFT. Sunland Ford, Victorville service department went on a test drive with me and said they can't fix the problem and it's normal for this Power Shift 6 Speed transmission. Then handed me a two page detailed document explaining why I hear GRINDING then I drive. The Service Manager, said I drive like an "OLD LADY," I will keep that comment in my pocket to serve me later.... I said,"I want my MPG". I was told by the sales department that MPG depends on the way I drive. reports," Aggressive driving, speeding, rapid accelerations and braking wastes 5-33% of gas.Sensible driving is safer for you and other." I have filed complaints with DMV Investigations,, and Consumer Affairs and Traffic and Safety. I have also contacted a Lawyer who loves class action law suits. We will see how this plays out.

- , Pinon Hills, CA, USA

problem #1

Oct 202013

Focus SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 583 miles

Low grinding sound, (sounds like aluminum cans grinding), after making turns, starting inclines, going up hills. Sound seems to be coming from bottom of front end of car. Cannot hear grinding sound if radio is on low. Just bought the car on 10/01/2013, and it is my first new car purchase. I would not have bought it if I knew about transmission problems on previous year models of Ford Focus.

- , Lake Forest Park, WA, USA

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