You may have seen this car in our recent NC500 episodes where we took a Ford Focus, a Citroen Saxo and a VW Golf estate to Scotland and back on an epic 1500-mile road trip. My daily up until this point had been a Skoda Octavia vRS estate which has since gone back to Skoda. I’ve soon got a new Skoda longtermer arriving but in this interim period, I’ve jumped back into my ‘Banana Boat’ which we’re hanging onto until we complete the final episode with these cars.
Normally, I’d wince at the idea of having to get back into one of our sh-tboxes for any more than a trip to the corner shop, but when it came to the Focus, I was the opposite.
Before our NC500 trip, both the Focus and I had some teething problems but after over 1,500 miles in a short space of time with any car, you’re likely to form a close bond with almost any car and that’s exactly what has happened here. We have thrown everything at this car, which has literally taken me all over the country, through every sort of weather and all manner of terrains – it’s even survived Alex driving it!
While it may not have the charm of the Saxo and the smoothness of the Golf, it’s clearly the most capable and the best all-rounder of the three. I would genuinely pick this over the other two cars every day of the week.
A bit of info about the Millennium edition – from its 1.6-litre engine it produces 113bhp and can achieve 0-60mph in 10 seconds with a top speed of 123mph. It comes with black leather and Millennium yellow paint and is one 1 of 1,000 produced and 1 of 73 left on the road in the UK.
This particular car has even more on it, including a tow bar, some unsavoury wheels, a new Focus badge and a bodged sunroof that is yet to be finished. This roof is particularly annoying as it rattles like mad. Which brings me to the noisiest part of the car – the f-cking wipers. You will have seen these constantly annoy me in our recent episodes and no, I’ve not fixed them yet.
The tow bar is another story and something I need to get used to. When reversing the other day up to my BMW Z3, I may have slightly bumped into the front of it. Luckily, the tow bar is the same height as the Z3’s number plate so there was no damage but that definitely gave me a reminder it was there.
The Focus has been great in this period and I don’t ever get annoyed that I have to go for a drive in it, even after I’ve been enjoying the luxuries that the vRS had to offer. Yes the wipers make noise, yes the roof rattles, yes the car starts to vibrate when you go above 70mph but I’m putting that all down to charm. I’ve done a lot more miles since our NC500 journey as I’ve gone to subsequent video shoots and I haven’t had any issues with it.
2021 has seen us buy some real gems but I think this Focus is right up there, and I can’t wait to see how it does when we take it to the south coast in 2022…
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