Join Date: May 2010
Location: Scranton PA
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Here's my review I posted on the Focus ST forums, let me know if you have any more specific questions!
"I figured I post this in the comparison section since I'd like to throw my 2 cents in with a comparo of my previous 2010 forte koup sx to my new ST Base.
I'll start with the major thing I like about the ST.
1. Suspension on the ST is fantastic relative the koup sx. It's firm, yet controlled. You can feel small road imperfections when going slower but as soon as there's a manhole (conveniently placed where your tires track) or bridge expansion or any large bump, the car absorbs it instead of your spine.
2. Sound: The sound insulation on the Ford is great. I'm really impressed on how quiet the car is, especially at idle. If anything, I wish I could hear the engine/exhaust just a little more on the daily drive. I do appreciate the fact that there's minimal wind noise and very acceptable road noise.
3: Engine: Fairly obvious... it's smooth in its delivery and just simply pulls like crazy.
4: Build Quality: The materials in the Ford are impressive. Most of the front is soft touch, all the buttons and knobs have satisfying clicks and movements, the leather on the steering wheel is great, and the cloth seats are very comfortable and supportive. All the gasp in the paneling inside seem to fit well and look like they will (hopefully) not induce squeaks and rattles in the near future.
5: Shifter and Clutch: The clutch on the ST is nice. I like it. It's not heavy, has a nice area of engagement, and is easy to control while letting it out. The Koup on the other hand had a loose clutch that was very hard to get a smooth start in, even after it was broken in. The shifter on the ST is smooth and goes into each gate with more precision than the Koup as well.
The things I enjoyed about the Forte SX Koup:
1: Gas Mileage: Fantastic for the amount of fun had in the car. On the highway I could easily eek out 34mpg if I stayed around 70mph. City mpg came out around 23-25 (higher than rating)
2: Look: Now I like how the ST looks, but I had compliments on how the Koup looked up until I traded it in. The car was simply shaped wonderfully.
3: Features: As is the Korean's style right now, you get a lot of techno bang-for-your-buck. I had bluetooth, a moonroof, auto-dimming mirror with homelink, hd radio, and the normal heaping of driveabilty assists in a car I got for around 17k. Pretty solid across the board.
4: Handling & Sound: Believe it or not, while only rated at .86g on the skidpad with stock semi ok all season tires, the koup was surprisingly fun to toss around. A light car with wide enough wheel-base delivered quite a bit of enjoyment for what was paid for it. In regards to sound, despite the less powered 2.4l in the kia, the exhaust note sounded more aggressive and with an SAI in the engine it was fun to hear the growl the little four pot could kick out.
So in the end, my decision to go to the ST was mostly to get a much more refined every day driver that I could have fun in on my drive home, had more utility than a coupe, still had respectable mpg, was a bit quicker, and most importantly was a stick "