Back in September I was invited to drive a Ford Focus around town for 24 hours while exploring my city. I was so excited about this opportunity, but a little nervous as well. We are a truck and SUV family. The last time we attempted to put our son’s car seat in my sister in law’s car (brand omitted) it was a disaster that forced me to sit in the back because the passenger seat had to be pushed all the way to the front in order to accommodate our child’s seat. “How does any family function with a car!?”, well we were about to find out. Below is my review of the Ford Focus and how we spent 24 glorious hours focusing on our city!
As mentioned above, I’m not really the car type, so I haven’t been paying much attention, but the Ford Focus design is really nice looking! I am not sure when Ford changed the body style, but it is sporty and sleek. My husband and I picked up the car downtown and headed to our first stop, Sorrentino’s, for a cooking lesson. Did I mention that the Focus we drove is a manual transmission? Did I mention that I have no clue how to drive a manual transmission and my husband hadn’t driven one in about 10 years or longer? Not an issue, after only a few jerky shifting manoeuvres later he got the hang of it again and I even tried it out with success! Fun tip: the dashboard tells you what gear to shift into! Also, parking downtown was so much easier in this car than our F-150!
After a fantastic cooking class and meal inspired by Northern Italy (we made gnocci in a brown butter sage sauce, agnello tonnato (rack of lamb with a mushroom tuna sauce) and an olive oil cake with vanilla bean gelato!) we rolled our full selves back into the car and headed to the VIP theatres in Windermere to catch a movie. Since having a child I really enjoy going to the 18+ VIP theatre where I feel like you can really relax and enjoy the show. From there we headed home on the Henday. Maybe it was my full belly, but I almost fell asleep on the way home (no, I wasn’t driving!). This car is quiet and smooth on the freeway! I would not hesitate to take it on a road trip.
Family Day with the Focus
The following morning was the real test, family day in the Focus. We picked our 2.5 year old up from the grandparents and nervously installed the car seat. We have a Diono Radian RXT seat. This is one of the heaviest seats in the world (in my opinion) but it has one of the highest rear facing weight and height limits, so we love it. I was sure that we would have to forward face while driving the Focus or I would have to sit in the back seat again. To my surprise and delight, the seat fit perfectly with room for me in the front passenger side! I’m not a super small person and I was comfortable as was my son.
We headed for brunch to Toast in St. Albert, one of the newest brunch spots in the area. We had never been, but heard great reviews. Service was fast and friendly and the food was yummy. Definitely family friendly. After brunch we headed to our weekly gymnastics class at Dynamyx in St. Albert. Again, impressed with the ease of parking!
Next stop on our journey was to West Edmonton Mall. We hit up the waterpark and our son loved every minute of it. The baby toddler pool is warm and inviting, the waves are exciting, there is a kids play park, spray pad area and a mini water slide for kids that adults can ride as well. And, of course, we had to do a little shopping while at the mall.
Our swimming bags and purchases from the day fit easily in the spacious trunk of the Focus. On our smooth drive back downtown, during rush-hour, our son was so comfortable he fell asleep!
A few other features we loved:
- I was impressed with the back up camera. It was clear and the large screen on the dash really helped with parking.
- Cheap on gas- the Focus we drove was an Ecoboost. This means that when you are at a red light or stopped for a period of time the car stops itself and then turns back on as soon as you hit the gas. We barely noticed this, just a little shake when it turns back on. For $20 we filled the car up to 3/4 full and only used about 1/4 of a tank on our journey from Downtown Edmonton-Windermere-Namao-St. Albert-West Edmonton Mall and back downtown!
- Stereo- no one wants to be in a car with lame sounding speakers. The Focus offered great sound quality and it was simple to connect my iphone music via the Sync system. Much easier than using a USB cord like I have to in my current vehicle.
Thanks Ford Canada for the opportunity to explore the Focus and #FocusOnMyCity!
*Expenses and use of the car were provided by Ford Canada. As always, all opinions expressed are my own.