Ford's revised Focus is better than ever
A revamp in 2015 improved the Ford Focus in all the right places, and buyers shouldn't automatically dismiss the excellent petrol versions.
What is it?
The Ford Focus is one of the best-selling cars in Ireland, and has been ever since it replaced the Escort in about 1998. The latest is among the best options in the massive C-segment hatchback class, battling with the Volkswagen Golf, Skoda Octavia, Toyota Auris, Opel Astra and many many more. Prices for the five-door Focus start at €20,395 for petrol power or €22,035 for diesel. The latest 1.5-litre TDCi diesel versions emit just 98g/km for ultra-low road tax - they're economical too.
What is it like?
The base shape of the Focus is attractive, especially since an early 2015 facelift, but it looks best in one of the higher trim levels such as Zetec or Titanium with classy alloy wheels and other aesthetic touches. Beware though that the Zetec model comes with firmer sports suspension that is brilliant to drive, but reduces comfort. Overall, however, the Focus has probably got the best chassis in the sector in terms of stability and driving enjoyment. Its five-star EuroNCAP score will also reassure buyers.
Carzone verdict: 4/5
Put simply, the biggest rival for the Focus is the Volkswagen Golf, but there's very little between them. The Focus has the sweeter handling, but the Golf is a tad more comfortable. The Skoda Octavia, of course, is far more spacious than either of them. If you're considering petrol power for a low-mileage car it's well worth checking out the excellent range of 1.0-litre EcoBoost engines offered in the Focus. It'll come down to personal preference in the end, but go for as high-spec a car as you can afford.