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mkI focus hatch and focus estate wheelbase question

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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 10:07 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: mkI focus hatch and focus estate wheelbase question Reply with quote

Having a bit of trouble sussing out the precise length of the mki focus's wheelbase.

I need a "new" shitter - and I've always found it a bit hard to hate the mki. it's cheap as fuck, bits for it are everywhere, the paint's thick, and ime they're incredibly reliable. do prefer the 1.8 petrol though.

One thing does piss me off about the fuckus though - boot space is fucking crap. Hence might look for an estate - also like fact that seats fold flat in estate so could sleep rough in it if zombie apocalypse kicks in.

that said, i don't want a longer wheel base cos handling. but - pretty sure chasis is same dimensions - just shell on top is longer, but can't find any decent spec to back this up. Help a bro yo.
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rpsmith79
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PostPosted: 10:35 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just looking at photos, they appear to use the exact same rear door, so that would suggest the wheel base is as near as damn it identical, they just have a much longer overhang past the rear wheel

But as long as you aren't trying to beat any lap time records and the 'ring, then does it really matter that much
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 10:51 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

yeah it probably won't make a shit of difference - but it got me to wondering
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DrDonnyBrago
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PostPosted: 10:53 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wheelbase is the same. The estate is longer, heavier and taller though which will affect handling. They also tend to have diesel engines and mega miles.
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stephen_o
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PostPosted: 14:19 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a V reg mark 1 Focus Ghia 1.6 Petrol. It was the hatch not the estate. As others have said - the wheelbase is identical, just a big difference in the back end weight. I hope my opinions help - I ran one into the ground after buying it as spares or repair then running it for 2 years. In that time the physical cost to me was 2nd hand scrapyard battery - which frustratingly was 2 weeks before it was traded for scrap value, and front drivers side brake pads and disc were replaced with a 2nd hand set about a month before scrapping after I had driven the car for 3 months with metal on metal due to no money.

The first mot with me the car passed with no issues, the 2nd and final time it was in a poor state and needed about 250 spending just for the mot and then also needed new tyres all round and the final straw was that when on the mechanics ramp as they were inspecting the failed cat converter I saw the start of an oil leak which was coming from the rocker cover. Altogether it really needed 800 spending + sorting out the oil leak.

Pros - very comfortable seats and good on a long journey
- decent boot space
- heated front windscreen was outstanding in frost clearing the windscreen in 1 minute.
- parts were cheap as chips the only reason it got into a state was my business struggling which meant I wasn't earning the min wage.
Cons - Clutch is hydraulic so check for slipping, mine was slipping when I bought the car and by the time I scrapped it - it was struggling to drive - no repair possible - needed a new clutch.
- The spec of a mark 1 is awful compared to even a basic car now, mine had a wrong radio unit fitted which at least had a cd but should only have had a tape player.
- mine was a 1.6 so was slow anyway, a 1.8 would poss be better.
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arry
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PostPosted: 14:23 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Re: mkI focus hatch and focus estate wheelbase question Reply with quote

trevor saxe-coburg-gotha wrote:
Having a bit of trouble sussing out the precise length of the mki focus's wheelbase.

I need a "new" shitter - and I've always found it a bit hard to hate the mki. it's cheap as fuck, bits for it are everywhere, the paint's thick, and ime they're incredibly reliable. do prefer the 1.8 petrol though.

One thing does piss me off about the fuckus though - boot space is fucking crap. Hence might look for an estate - also like fact that seats fold flat in estate so could sleep rough in it if zombie apocalypse kicks in.

that said, i don't want a longer wheel base cos handling. but - pretty sure chasis is same dimensions - just shell on top is longer, but can't find any decent spec to back this up. Help a bro yo.


What else do you need it to be? I ask because there's better beaters out there. I'm currently rocking an IS300 with a 2JZ in it; it's comfy well specced and handles really well being proper wheel drive n stuff. It's not exactly economical though. But reading between the lines if it's a beater you're not racking up many miles?
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stevo as b4
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PostPosted: 17:47 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

You want a baggy old mk1 Focus because Focus pervert IMO, not because you need a cheap daily shitter. And said shitter your worrying about wheelbase like your a qualified race car engineer that's been given a critical set of mm perfect chassis dimensions to work to. Wanting a daily shitter to handle well? What's that concept all about then?

The best handling old Focus will be the one with the newest suspension bushings, dampers, set of premium tyres and all the adjustable geometry (very little) set to std spec.

I don't think there's anyone on BCF qualified enough to do finite structural analysis of all the permutations of Focus chassis and body style to throw down qualified statements about which will handle best and give best road holding.

Im not being a cunt, if you have a thing for old mk1 Focus's get one, they're far from the shittest car in the world. I like old Rover 220's but I'm not pretending they offer limpet like grip, or have great steering feedback or minimal body flex etc.

Anyway Arry is right. You can do better for the budget if your looking for a good VFM shitter. But don't give us Bullshit about wheelbase and handling performance IMO.
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Bikeless
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PostPosted: 18:44 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trouble is they're rusty shitters, try a rover 75 estate with the BMW 2l diesel engine(seriously) or an old volvo estate which will be my choice for my next wagon purchase.
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andym
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PostPosted: 20:35 - 11 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

What about a mondeo (mk 3 is the best imo), as opposed to focus?

After getting 2 1/2 years out of my 540 mondeo (OK it looked rough as fuck), I recently bought another one for 485 (only needed a new bonnet, but I had a car full of spares anyway)
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 03:16 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

stevo as b4 wrote:
The best handling old Focus will be the one with the newest suspension bushings, dampers, set of premium tyres and all the adjustable geometry (very little) set to std spec.

I don't think there's anyone on BCF qualified enough to do finite structural analysis of all the permutations of Focus chassis and body style to throw down qualified statements about which will handle best and give best road holding.


Fwiw I drive a 1.8 04 3 door "edge" and a 1.8 09 zetec estate as 'dailies' - both have 120K+ miles on them. I drive 30 miles a day on remote rural roads that are good fun. The latter feels much newer and a lot less sloppy than the older one. But the handling definitely isn't as good. For one thing it has annoying traction control, I also think the steering might be different. The gearing is certainly not the same - despite both models having 1.8 petrol engines. So there are some important and easily felt differences.

Anyway, I do prefer the older version - but wouldn't want to gain extra carrying space but lose the better handling if that's what a change in wheelbase would mean.

Fwiw I've got a lot of money to spend but I honestly don't like how new cars are being made, and genuinely think the humble, boring old mkI focus 1.8 edge was about as much car as I need - and perhaps even want (!). I wish I could warm to all the new gadgets and features but the truth is they drive me batshit - pun somewhat intentional though not wholly, it has to be said.
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 03:35 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

stevo as b4 wrote:
best...Focus


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMqS2RLdTp8
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rpsmith79
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PostPosted: 07:15 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

As has been pointed out, it has nothing to do with wheelbase

The biggest difference in the estate version will be the added weight over the back wheels, it will probably be stiffer sprung at the rear too to account for the additional weight and carrying capacity

Also, you are comparing 2 models with 5 years between them, there could be any number of minor changes made in the build spec between the 2, most car manufacturers continually develop a car through it's lifetime, so could easily have had different gearboxes or steering racks
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 08:20 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Re: mkI focus hatch and focus estate wheelbase question Reply with quote

arry wrote:
trevor saxe-coburg-gotha wrote:
Having a bit of trouble sussing out the precise length of the mki focus's wheelbase.

I need a "new" shitter - and I've always found it a bit hard to hate the mki. it's cheap as fuck, bits for it are everywhere, the paint's thick, and ime they're incredibly reliable. do prefer the 1.8 petrol though.

One thing does piss me off about the fuckus though - boot space is fucking crap. Hence might look for an estate - also like fact that seats fold flat in estate so could sleep rough in it if zombie apocalypse kicks in.

that said, i don't want a longer wheel base cos handling. but - pretty sure chasis is same dimensions - just shell on top is longer, but can't find any decent spec to back this up. Help a bro yo.


What else do you need it to be? I ask because there's better beaters out there. I'm currently rocking an IS300 with a 2JZ in it; it's comfy well specced and handles really well being proper wheel drive n stuff. It's not exactly economical though. But reading between the lines if it's a beater you're not racking up many miles?


Those IS300s look ace. I'd love to drive one. But they're a bit hard to come by if eBay's anything to go on - and another thing is they look complicated. I respect the engineering and high spec-ness of it all, but am more a fan of simplicity when it comes to my own personal use.
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 08:21 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

andym wrote:
What about a mondeo (mk 3 is the best imo), as opposed to focus?

After getting 2 1/2 years out of my 540 mondeo (OK it looked rough as fuck), I recently bought another one for 485 (only needed a new bonnet, but I had a car full of spares anyway)


Yeah - I had one a few years ago. It was decent and I might go for another. Ideally I like slightly smaller cars though.
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 08:22 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bikeless wrote:
Trouble is they're rusty shitters, try a rover 75 estate with the BMW 2l diesel engine(seriously) or an old volvo estate which will be my choice for my next wagon purchase.


Good suggestion - I'll have a look at those.
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DrDonnyBrago
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PostPosted: 11:20 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

FYI the 1.8 had about 115 bhp, the 2L had about 130 and there is a ST170 with just shy of 170. There were two 1.6 lumps, a 100bhp and a 115bhp with variable valve timing.

I had a mk1 1.8 and a mk2 1.6 100bhp. The 100 bhp 1.6 is a lumpy, boring, old fashioned engine and I wouldn't recommend it. The 1.6 115bhp is supposed to be revvier but more fragile, so you may as well get a 1.8. The 1.8 is good, not overly powerful but it revs nice and as it is mated to the half decent focus chassis it can be quite enjoyable. I've driven a 2L and it just feels a bit gruntier throughout.

Given the choice I'd prefer the 2L, although the 1.8 is OK, I wouldn't bother with a 1.6/1.4. I'm told the ST170 is better all round, stiffer, better brakes, more power etc etc.

My 1.8 mk1 was a great car for the 600 I paid, we put 30k on it in a year and a half, for which it only needed tyres and bulbs. It did have a white hammerite paintjob on the doors and arches (rusty!). I sold it for 400 with the clutch on its last legs.

Both the 1.6 mk2 and the 1.8 mk1 had a wierd throttle issue which probably contributed to the wearing of the clutches. If you were on the throttle and let off for a gear change, the revs would spike for a split second. It had the effect of blipping the throttle on an upshift giving sloppy, juddery gear changes which really bugged me when driving in a spirited manner. Wife didnt notice as she was slow with gear changes. Something to look out for, although it didn't cause any other problem in either car over about 60k miles.

The mk1 suffered with crappy central locking, check the back doors unlock, check the remote locking. The heated windscreen tends to stop working in front of the driver because the wiper arm bumps the ribbon cable. Exhausts, arches and lower parts of the doors rot for fun. Easy cars to work on though. I believe that the 1.6 100bhp and the 1.4 are cam belts, the 1.8 and 2L are cam chain and the 1.6 115 is a chain (I think). Belt intervals are 100k or 10 years, but they have a habit of snapping before that.


Last edited by DrDonnyBrago on 11:31 - 12 Jul 2018; edited 1 time in total
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rpsmith79
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PostPosted: 11:31 - 12 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

The ST170 is a good shout, though the estate versions are rare

I had the hatchback version, one of the most fun cars i have driven, but coming from a string of Jap/German cars, the lack of anything even remotely resembling luxuries, piss poor plasticy dashboard and the fact it drinks petrol for fun, meant i only kept it for about 6 months........ but it was a fun 6 months
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stevo as b4
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PostPosted: 00:22 - 13 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

OP is a focus fanboi just needs to admit it that's all!

The ST 170 had the best Zetec engine of all the big iron block ones, but the car was way over geared as it had top speed but should have been alot better at getting there.

Tall gearing ain't always much fun, my Rover is geared for 80mph at 3000, and 30mph in 4th isn't much fun either.
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trevor saxe-coburg-gotha
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PostPosted: 06:44 - 13 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

stevo as b4 wrote:
OP is a focus fanboi just needs to admit it that's all!


I definitely think they're one of the least worst piles of crap out there. Also this motoring maxim: Better the shitter you know.

How's that for some zealous fandom.
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Tracey Suntan-King
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PostPosted: 07:35 - 13 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

trevor saxe-coburg-gotha wrote:

Better the shitter you know.



Wasn't that a song by Kylie?
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stevo as b4
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PostPosted: 19:03 - 13 Jul 2018    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kylie wouldn't do such vulgar things though, and I bet she never had a Focus. Laughing

Nowt wrong with wanting to keep buying mk1 Ford Focus's because your into them. I've had two Rover tomcats, both the same engine and model. You like what you like and that's it!

As I get older though my standards are slipping and I'd literally have a go at anything. I'd go for a Frenchie or even a tidy Korweean given the opportunity.

There's a bloke on a forum with a stunning black glossy Probe, and I was never keen on them for years, probably on the back of the negative press and image from the time. But I reckon I'd try a tidy Probe these days, even if thier Japanese sister is the real stunner.

Oh fuck this thread is all sounding wrong now. Laughing
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