Anyone driven a Ford Focus or Hyundai Matrix?

Me wife and I are thinking about getting a new (read: second hand) car come Chinese New Year and so far the only ones we both like are the Focus and Matrix. Just wondering if anyone has driven either of these? If so, how are they? Normally, I wouldn’t tough a Ford with a ten-foot pole, but the Focus just seems really cool.

Aren’t they both made in Taiwan? Once all the trim falls off they should be fine for a year or two. The European-made Focus is an excellent car. I have driven the UK-market hatchback/estate shape one and it’s a perfectly fine car. British-made/European-made Fords are very reliable and cheap to service and very highly regarded by the public. Biggest seller in the UK I think the Focus was. I really liked it. It was a brand new hire car, if that makes a difference. 1.8 litre manual. Never driven a Hyundai.

The Hyundai Matrix is a solid car. Reliable and low maintenance. Once you get used to the centerline dash, it’s actually quite pleasant to drive. Just be sure to get the 1.8L version. The 1.6L is just a tad underpowered.

i have a focus s2.0. nice. feels like a euro. parts are sent here and assembled.

please don’t expect the focus to be a full on WRC car like so many focus drivers here seem to think… :unamused: but still… it’s a nice car… i’ve tried convincing the missus to trade in the MAV for one, but she feels it’s too small for a family… she wants an explorer - to which i reply “OK, get my my zx-10r and you can have whatever car you want.” ~_~

hyundai is hyundai… pass…

when are they gunna get some REAL fords in taiwan? mmm… xr6t anyone?

[quote=“x08”]please don’t expect the focus to be a full on WRC car like so many focus drivers here seem to think… :unamused: but still… it’s a nice car… i’ve tried convincing the missus to trade in the MAV for one, but she feels it’s too small for a family… she wants an explorer - to which i reply “OK, get my my zx-10r and you can have whatever car you want.” ~_~

hyundai is hyundai… pass…

when are they gunna get some REAL fords in taiwan? mmm… xr6t anyone?[/quote]

who are these focus drivers that think they drive wrx’s?

I also drove a focus in the UK as a hire and found it OK but remember that when they came up with the name it was widely read as Foc Us by the public! My future brother in law has a Matrix and seems quite happy with it. I have driven it but can’t really comment as I was more concerned about the whole driving on the wrong side of the road in the passenger seat scenario.

Many thanks for the info. I think I’m just going to go to a Ford and Hyundai dealership, fake being interested and take one for a test drive.

I don’t think I really need to worry about a second-hand Focus being well thrashed, like I would say a Virage or Lancer, would I?

Oh, and a third car has been thrown into the mix…the uber-awesome, yet horribly named Grunder…

[quote=“AWOL”][quote=“x08”]please don’t expect the focus to be a full on WRC car like so many focus drivers here seem to think… :unamused: but still… it’s a nice car… i’ve tried convincing the missus to trade in the MAV for one, but she feels it’s too small for a family… she wants an explorer - to which i reply “OK, get my my zx-10r and you can have whatever car you want.” ~_~

hyundai is hyundai… pass…

when are they gunna get some REAL fords in taiwan? mmm… xr6t anyone?[/quote]

who are these focus drivers that think they drive wrx’s?[/quote]

i’ve seen quite a few focuses getting thrashed around taichung… there’s one black one i’ve seen a few times who seems to think that his focus can keep up with my 250 in morning peak-hour traffic :loco:

Did you compare the specs of the two Rob?

I agree, the Focus is one of the few Fords I might drive, although I once rented a Ford Escape. Thought it was going to fall apart or fly off the road at 85mph on I-95. The Focus looks noticeably faster in the 1.8 variety. Almost repectable. I think their strength is lateral movement as they seem to be really peppy racing in traffic. I have played with a few before.

                               0-100 kph  -     hp/rpm 

New Focus 1.6 4D/5D: 11.21/12.12 - 132/6000
New Focus 1.8 5D: 9.42 - 148/6000

Hyundai Matrix 1.6 GLD: 12.78 - 102/5800
Hyundai Matrix 1.8 GLS: 13.26 - 123/6000 The 1.8 GLS weighs 24kg more

the ford focus is also german desigend. the s2.0 at least is assembled here from german parts. it feels like a euro and a lot less like an asian car… certainly nothing like my VW back home, but nice enough. air con is nice and cold too… :slight_smile:

Josh,

Thanks for posting that info for me. It hadn’t even occured to me to check that out.

24kg heavier for the 1.8 Matrix is a big difference in weight!

To be honest though, I’m more concerned with how the car handles, how responsive steering and braking is and how comfortable a ride it is. I took a Solio out for a spin a while ago and really liked it, it was really smooth and comfy, but my wife hates Suzuki…

That 3rd car is ugly and boring.
I like the look of the Focus on the street, but it was but ugly in the show room. Don’t know why.
I think you just sold a Solio. I been looking at them or the Swift, but the wife comes out with “the Swift is ugly”, so Solio it is.

Anyone selling a used Solio in great shape? Only driven by your mother to Church on Sundays.

your wife thinks the swift is ugly but the solio isnt?!?!?! interesting. :slight_smile:

AWOL: I agree, I prefer the Swift over the Solio in terms of appearance.

I did not like the swift much at first either, but it grew on me and now I do like it. I have always liked the Solio, I would love to supper one up and drag it :slight_smile: and they look like my car in my game Auto Assault. http://www.autoassault.com/index.html

I think we will have to go test them both and see. We have a baby on the way so we got look for practicality and room as well as cheapness. That’s why I thought a used Solio. You pay extra for the Swift’s cool new look. But you get to sing that old song “Trying hard to look like Mini Cooper. Super duper”. :sunglasses: (ok. no more 80’s MP3’s)

I have to budget the wife not working, a new house and a car. Glad I bought the new scooter and computer already.
Anyone selling a nice house? One like JoshTW’s but about 5~8 mill? :help:

The only concerns I have with buying a Suzuki is safety and quality. I still remember the good ole days of the Suzuki Sidekick and it’s overturning when going around corners. I have a friend who has a friend (I can’t believe I just said that…) who works in a Suzuki plant and says they aren’t the safest of cars.

When my missus gets knocked up, I’m buying us a Volvo…but for now, I think we’re going to go with the Matrix.

Back in the states I owned a Focus for 6 years. Never had one problem with it at all. The car ran like a dream. I got excellent mileage and the best part is the room inside. I’m tall and need head room. Cars like the civic, etc, I always feel cramped inside…but the focus has a taller ceiling and lots more leg room. The trunk space is enormous…and the seats fold down to make your entire car a trunk, if you need it to be. (mine was the 4 door Sedan)

On the road it handled curves beautifully. I could do U turns on a two lane street with just one turn. I drove it in the snow too and never had any problems.

The focus rides high. You dont feel too low to the ground. Which is nice too.

All in all, I was well pleased. Did you know it was originally a wolkswagon design that ford bought from them? Yup!

Hmm…well, that’s interesting to know…I think I might just have to try out a Focus then, Matrix-loving from my wife be damned (but don’t tell her I said that!).

The Focus has had some wonderful write-ups and ratings in Europe (thanks to the Germans) although the Taiwan model seems to have the Taiwanese assembly, trademark diddly damper problem, same as some other Taiwanese assembled cars, including my own Suzuki Solio. The ride is certainly rough and bumpy over Chung-Ho roads with an additional rear wheel well hummmmmmm…Groat! Groat!
Simply upgrading the dampers would seem like a simple solution coupled with a change in rear tyres to eliminate hum and perhaps a smattering of rubber soundproofing on the rear wheel arch interiors. Not that most people care, but the rear seats are rather bolt upright and aren’t comfortable after a short time, but on the whole a rather good car to have arrived in Taiwan.

I used to be a Hyundai technician (blush, blush) in England, as well as Subaru, Isuzu, Opel/Vauxhaul and Suzuki. Quote me if you like:
“Hyundai’s were and I believe will continue to be one of the worst forms of transport on the planet!” I can ream off a frightening list of HyunDIE! instances, but I’ll get carried away as I would never be satisfied, impressing to everyone how terrible a car a Hyundai is. Strike that! It’s not a car as much as a man made frustration!