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It wasn't out yet when I bought mine. Looks very good though. Less hp than the SX and only a 5 speed manual. A little more money than the Forte, but it's a more sophisticated car. I would definitely drive it and compare to the Forte.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah I'll have to check out the noise at highway speeds in 5th gear and see if I'd be wishing for a 6th to bring the rpms down some more.

However, the reviews of the manual are stellar, even as a 5 speed.
 

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I drove one and came away unimpressed. The dash is too busy and not intuitive as is the Forte. Plus a similarly equipped Focus would cost considerably more. Even the salesman conceded it was too complicated. Sometimes less is more.

I drove the sedan version and have yet to drive the 5 door version and compare it directly to my Forte. The fuel mileage may be better, however as the engine was smaller.

I have read somewhere that the Elantra touring will be resurrected in 2013 as a five door hatchback like the Forte 5 door.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A loaded out SE(only trim with a manual) isn't much more than an SX Forte 5.

Did you test out one with the MyFord 'touch' that the review also said was complicated and recommended against?
 

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I believe the SE is only one step above the base model. Above that is the SEL and finally the "Titanium" model. The SX Forte is the top of the Forte as it is with all Kia models. In fact this week's Autoweek makes mention that this is applied to all these models along with improved handling.

The only advantage I can see that the Ford has over the Forte would be the better fuel mileage. I could see a case to be made that the 2.0 engine, or better yet, the 2.4 GDI engine as it is a direct injection engine which has about four times the pressure directly injected into the combustion chamber as opposed to the 2.4 port injection currently available. That provides for more power and improved economy along with higher compression which always has greater power and economy. But at this point it is not available. Perhaps later.

Then we have the matter of the warranty, 36 versus 60 months for the Kia. And 36,000 miles versus the 100,000 miles for the Kia.

There must be at least a $2,500 to $3,000 price premium for the Focus as well.

Frankly, I was expecting more from the Focus but I was underwhelmed. The various auto magazines will undoubtedly fall all over themselves praising the Focus, and perhaps that is a good thing as it is high time the American manufacturers started delivering world class automobiles. But recall that Motor Trend gave the Chevy Volt the "Car of the Year" award.

I would add that I was looking at a new decked out Mazda 3 the other day and I was struck by its good looks. If I were in the market, and I am not, I would want to look seriously at it before making up my mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
There must be at least a $2,500 to $3,000 price premium for the Focus as well.
There's really not. I'm building a 5 door SE with The highest level equipment group 203a, moonroof, sport package and winter package and it comes to $20,270 per edmunds.

An SX 5 door with moonroof and leather package is $19,244. Subtract out the $1,000 rebate and they're virtually the same price.

Add in $700 for an extended warranty on the Ford to match Kia's, and they're still quite close in price. Kia a bit cheaper with the rebate, Ford offering more features worth that $1000 and will most likely be offering a rebate of their own in the future.


Mazda 3 is essentially the Focus' brother with a perma-grin :D


In any case, I've screwed myself by making the mistake of test driving a Mini. Why do they have to be so fun to drive and cost so much more unless you get an absolute bare bones model? Has me thinking of putting my purchase off even further and scrimping and saving to come up with a bigger down payment to get into one of those nicely equipped.
 

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People need to stop window comparing the Kia's pricing. Dealers are selling their models at invoice minus incentives. Kia gives their dealers huge money for volume sales, which is different than other makes.

And the focus SE trim isn't comparable to the SX. It's a base model with options.
 

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Im about to say you will get more bang for your buck with the forte SX and more fun out of it to. Seeing that there right around the same price go with the forte. The SE is the EX model of the forte and even then it comes with more then the SE
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
And the focus SE trim isn't comparable to the SX.
How so?

Features are roughly equal, if not better in the SE Focus.
0-60 is about the same in the manual.
Focus does slightly better on the skidpad.
Braking ability is about the same.
They weigh about the same.
Significantly better mileage in the Focus.
Edmunds projected true cost to own over 5 years actually puts the Focus at $4k cheaper.
Identical wheel base.
Roughly the same interior space.

What am I missing here? An SE with the options I identified and a fully loaded SX(no tech package since that's not available with manual) are damn near twins.

http://www.edmunds.com/car-comparis...k&show=0|1|2|3|4|5|6|7|8&comparatorId=2518297
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Don't you mean Found On Road Dead? ;)

And I'd agree wholeheartedly with that blue oval(at least they circled the problem) bashing up until just recently...but I can say the same thing about Kia. Both have really turned things around. Just another similarity...poor brand rep from prior years. I would feel philosophically guilty for giving money to the UAW on the Ford though.

If any of these choices are bad from a quality perspective, it'd actually be the Mini I want that would cost $4k more as they don't have the best reliability...
 

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I test drove the fiesta and for the price the engine is very smooth with no clacking noise at cold ! like the forte... and its fun to drive but I dont like the rear view mirrors we just see nothing in these! the focus should be equal if not better to this but I really like how easy it is to controle all the system in the forte to compare to the ford but for a rentale car the focus is perfect to beat th shiit out of it :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
And there's another similarity, both have the stigma of being rental car fleet vehicles....well at least the sedans, but who buys one of those? ;)
 

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Regarding the Fiesta, it isn't in the same size class as the Forte. And it doesn't even come with an arm rest and has rear drums. Comparing apples with elephants.

When I gave a cursory glance at the Focus on the dealer's lot the MRSP came to what my SX five door and it was only the SE model. To its credit it did have the six speed automatic as does my SX.

Regarding the rear view I haven't noticed anything of a problem. It is like many cars; could use a rear camera but since I don't do a lot of city driving where congestion is a big problem it isn't a concern. The Fusion I had did have a significant problem with rear view quality.

I may go up to the Ford dealer today to satisfy my curiosity.

Using Edmunds, the Focus five door SEL came out to $22,789. My SX is currently selling for $19,220 where I live. That is about a $3,500 difference.

Oddly enough the wheelbase is exactly the same at 104.3 inches. The Focus does have more cargo room with all seats in place and does deliver better fuel economy. (This is for the SX of course with 2.4 engine.) The Kia weighs 22 pounds more than the Focus. The Focus is 1/2 foot longer. Fuel capacity is only 12.4 gallons in the Focus so I would guess the distance on one tank of fuel would be comparable as the Forte has a 13.7 gallon tank. There is almost two inches more head room in the Forte.

It appears to me that the Focus offers two advantages over the Forte: 1) better fuel economy, 2) more cargo room.

Removing option package 301a from the Focus brings the price down to $21,874 which is still $2,600 more than the Forte. Does the Focus come with standard bluetooth? Yes. But it appears that satellite radio requires option 301a which brings it back up to a $3,500 difference. The numbers don't lie.

If I would change anything it would be a little more cargo room in the Forte. And I don't like the cargo cover. I would have preferred the sliding cover on the Hyundai Elantra Touring. But it only comes with a 2.0 and four speed auto and bluetooth is optional. Oddly enough the Elantra Touring is going to be changed to a five door hatchback in 2013 moving away from the "waggony" look it currently has. I would rate the Elantra Touring as having superior instrumentation and has two additional gauges instead of the "idiot" lights.
 

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on the Focus' auto gearbox, the manual shifts are performed thru a silly little toggle switch on the shifter.

a really stupid concept.
 

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on the Focus' auto gearbox, the manual shifts are performed thru a silly little toggle switch on the shifter.

a really stupid concept.
Yes. And the SX comes with the paddle shifters. Although I don't use them all that much they are right at your fingertips and you don't even need to move your hands off the steering wheel. Same for the volume and speed controls. Very convenient and intuitive. There is no "learning curve" with the Forte. I was still searching around after driving the Focus for about five miles and never did figure out what some of that stuff does. Sometimes less is more.
 

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;) man these smilies suck on this site!!!

I love my ford. I also love when ppl talk shit about my focus :D
Well, speaking for myself, I'm not knocking the Focus. I'm just comparing the differences and prices. I've bought about a dozen new Fords over the years but I can't buy what they don't offer and at the time I bought my Forte last year the Focus wasn't on the market yet.

A lot depends on what one wants in a car. Been doing a lot of research this morning. I'm impressed with the new Elantra, of course my Forte, the Honda Fit and the Civic. I like the comparison charts on Edmunds to see the differences and "True Cost to Own." I even plugged in the Toyota Prius but with the prices they are getting it cost just as much to own it even factoring in fuel mileage over five years.

I'm going to compare my Forte with the black Focus 5 door up the street but I don't expect to have my mind changed much. I'll report later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Using Edmunds, the Focus five door SEL came out to $22,789. My SX is currently selling for $19,220 where I live. That is about a $3,500 difference.
You don't need to step up to the SEL to compete with the SX trim. The SE with a few options is a good match.

Plus the SEL is irrelevant as it doesn't offer a manual.
 
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