About 6 months ago, I bought a 2005 Ford Focus Wagon SE for $2000... cert and etested with around 236,000km on it. It now has around 247,000km on it. It looks like the pictured Focus, only with fewer options (like no fog lights and didn’t come with aluminum wheels) and in worse condition.

Everything that’s currently wrong with it is:

  • I bought 4 used OEM aluminum wheels cheap. But I didn’t notice one was bent. So when I got new tires, they installed them on 3 aluminum wheels and one of the steelies the car came with
  • at least one of my new tires has recently gone out of balance... but it’s only noticable if I drive over 110km/h
  • My car has the common “long crank to start” issue that Ford can’t figure out. It’s not the spark plugs, coils, wires or the ground straps. Could be a dirty intake or worn throttle position sensor. It’s annoying but I’m not gonna worry about it.
  • The wires that go into the rear hatch door are cracked, but not broken. Common issue that I will have to fix before the summer is out. Had to fix the same thing on my previous Focus Wagon.
  • The driver seat is worn and slightly slanted to the left. Still reasonably comfortable... but I’ve contemplated replacing it with a used SVT Focus seat.
  • My thermostat needs to be replaced. In cooler weather while cruising gently on the highway, it throws a check engine code that the thermostat is stuck open. I suspect it just doesn’t close completely. I bought the replacement part, but getting to the thermostat is a pain in the ass. Tried replacing it, but gave up. Gonna get my mechanic to do it in the Autumn.
  • One of the license plate lights won’t work because the bulb holder is broken. It looks like someone tried to fix it at some point and completely fucked it up.
  • The CD player doesn’t place CDs anymore. So now it’s just an AM/FM radio only
  • The parking brake doesn’t work well at all... can’t hold the car in place on a hill. I suspect this may be due to worn rear drum shoes. Gonna try my hand at fixing this myself next month.
  • When I bought the car, it had recently had some rust issues repaired. And I’m guessing that rust will come back with a vengeance within 2-3 years. But that’s okay given how much it cost.
  • My car didn’t have the original tire jack. It had some other jack from what was probably a truck or SUV. It doesn’t fit nicely under the cover in the trunk.
  • The wheel lug nuts look ugly and rusted. I have new chrome wheel lug nuts... haven’t gotten around to installing them.
  • The cup holder inserts that came with the car are not the OEM ones and don’t fit quite right.
  • The gearbox syncros are worn. It’s sometimes hard to get it in first gear and sometimes it pops out of 1st. It’s worse when it’s cold. This car was clearly driven by someone who didn’t know how to drive stick properly and was really hard on the shifter.
  • The clutch is showing signs of wear. It’s still fine and will likely last at least another 2 years, but probably more.
  • The car came with the base gauge cluster... meaning no tachometer. I’ve thought about getting a used gauge cluster that has the tach, but I’m probably not gonna bother since I’m likely gonna only have this car for another 2-3 years.
  • The A/C doesn’t work. Might be a fuse... don’t really care since I never use A/C.
  • The battery cover is missing.