US focuses on defects
The US Government has launched fresh investigations into a string of defects plaguing the Ford Focus.
Just weeks after Ford Australia announced it would import the hot-selling compact in the second half of the year, US authorities have launched six investigations into the Focus.
The problem is unlikely to affect the Australian-bound models that will arrive in November because they will be built in Europe.
Motorists in the US have reported that the engine can stall and that the front suspension can break.The Focus has already been recalled eight times for defects involving seat latches, windscreen wipers and a sticking throttle.
US authorities cannot recall another car being involved in so many investigations.
Ford Australia says the US models come out of the Mexico plant. The three-door and five-door versions that Australia will receive later in the year will come from plants in Germany and Spain that serve the right-hand-drive British Isles markets.
There have been no reported problems with the Ford Focus in Europe.
However, it was revealed this week that a new hot version, the RS Focus, has failed internal crash tests in Sweden.
The RS model has been delayed for more than a year leading to the latest crash-test crises. Problems arose with fuel leaking profusely after the tests.
Behind the Honda Accord, the Focus is the fifth best-selling car in North America.