I owned this car for a year, and it was a blast to own. I autocrossed it once during this time, and it performed very well. However, there are some things to consider if you are looking into one of th...
I owned this car for a year, and it was a blast to own. I autocrossed it once during this time, and it performed very well. However, there are some things to consider if you are looking into one of these:
1. It is NOT comfortable. ESPECIALLY if you get the Recaro seats. They are very snug for a bigger guy like me, and the car itself is very stiff, and unforgiving from a comfort perspective.
2. It is only available with a manual transmission. For me, this was perfect and it served me well as my first manual car. But be aware of this if you are considering one, a manual in stop and go traffic can get old unless you just absolutely love shifting your own gears.
3. Reliability can be a concern. LSPI is something you should investigate thoroughly before purchasing any direct injection turbocharged vehicle. In addition, my ST had the 3rd gear syncro in the transmission go out, which required an entire replacement (covered by warranty, thankfully). This is a moderately common issue on the ST in general, especially on the 13 and 14 models, so be aware and pay very close attention to how a used one is shifting. If it grinds or pops out of third even slightly, stay clear.
4. Interior room is not great. Backseat legroom is pretty poor. Some would lead you to believe this is a great car for the person who wants the best of both worlds, a "fun practical car" but be warned; practical is a relative term, and this car is not practical compared to mid-size sedans or even other sporty hatches in this price range. Interior layout is much improved in the '15 and up years, so try to find one of those (looks are subjective though, and many prefer the 13 and 14 body style, so be aware that the interior is not as refined in one of those)
Overall, if you want a decently practical, fun car, the Focus ST might be right for you. But be sure and take all of the drawbacks of this vehicle into consideration, especially if you need it to be more than just a fun daily driver.