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Preview: 2005 Ford Focus
Fixing the niggles.
by Jim Burt (2004-05-17)

When an automaker carries over a platform from one product cycle to the next, the result usually draws yawns, snickers and indifference. That is especially true inDetroit.

But the 2005 Ford Focus, while not perfect, should at least continue to draw peeks and serious consideration for the next four years from anyone shopping for a good car under $20,000.

Call it a mid-cycle refresh, I guess. But because Ford doesn't want to incur the expense and hassle of giving the U.S. the brand new stem-to-stern remake of the Focus arriving in Europe, the U.S. 2005 Focus is a more substantial "refresh" than we are accustomed to.

The hood is a smidge taller than the 2004 model, so women can see better when parking. The dashboard is, curiously, now less modern-looking than the old one. It's now cleaner, more sedate and sort of Volkswagen-esque, like many of Ford's new interiors (see the Five Hundred and Freestyle later this year, and you'll get it). Gone are the ovoid air vents that appeared to be designed by George Jetson.

2005 Ford Focus
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