Skip advert
Advertisement
Car trim reviews

Ford Focus Zetec S

"The Ford Focus Zetec S makes for an ideal sporty family hatchback, which is just as at home on a trip to the shops as it is being driven down twisty country lanes."

Owners Rating
Be the first to review

Ignoring the high-performance Ford Focus ST, the Zetec S is currently the sportiest variant of the Ford Focus. With its sporty bodykit, rear roof spoiler and unique 17-inch alloy wheels, it certainly looks bespoke compared to the rest of the hatchback range.

There's some neat touches inside too, including sports seats, stainless steel pedals and an infotainment system that's equipped with Bluetooth and AUX ports.

Advertisement - Article continues below

There’s some great optional extras too, including the Driver Assistance pack that throws in a fleet of safety tech like traffic sign recognition and a lane keeping assist. The Convenience Pack can be included too, which throws in the Active Park Assist system that enables hands-free driving.

A range of diesel and petrol engines are available for the Focus Zetec S. The most economical is the 1.5-litre TDCi diesel, which is capable of up to 74.3mpg. The 1.5-litre EcoBoost is better suited to the sporty styling of the Zetec S - it's not as economical but sprints from 0-62mph in 8.9 seconds.

All models come with stop-start technology – which turns the engine off when the car is stationary to help improve fuel consumption.

Good points

The Focus is a great car to drive – beating its main class rivals including the Volkswagen Golf and the Vauxhall Astra. The Ford Focus Zetec S, with its slightly stiffer suspension setup, improves on this again, and has the kind of handling that you would expect from a genuine sports car.This hasn’t been to the detriment of comfort either. Even with its harder suspension, the Focus still manages to adequately cushion the bumps around town. It's also at home cruising down the motorway, with wind and road noise being kept to a minimum.For those in need of a big boot, it’s worth mentioning that the larger and more practical Ford Focus estate is also available in Zetec S trim.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

Bad points

The Focus seriously lags behind some of its rivals in terms of practicality. It has a 316-litre boot, which is just 17 litres more than the Ford Fiesta supermini, and a full 54 litres less than the Vauxhall Astra.The Zetec S may look sporty, but handsome it certainly isn’t. It’s debatable whether the addition of deep bumpers and side skirts improves the car’s aesthetics, but we'll leave you to make your mind up on that one.Although the Zetec S comes with lots of equipment, it all comes at a cost. In comparison to the Zetec, the S costs £2,500 more, and that’s without ticking any boxes on the lengthy option list. It also doesn't have the level of luxuries equipped to the similarly-priced Ford Focus Titanium.

What you get

  • Alloy wheels
  • Folding rear seats
  • Alarm
  • Tyre pressure sensors
  • Passenger & Driver airbag
  • Front side airbags
  • Curtain airbags
  • Front fog lights
  • Manual air conditioning
  • Leather steering wheel
  • Height adjustable driver's seat
  • Front electric windows
  • Single CD player
  • AUX stereo input
  • DAB Radio
  • Stop/Start
  • Sports suspension
  • Sports seats
  • Bluetooth

Recommended optional extras

  • Driver Assistance Pack

Our choice

The 1.5 litre turbocharged Ecoboost petrol engine is the best choice if you want to make the most of the Zetec S’s sharp, sports car-like handling.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Hot car deal: sporty Ford Focus hatchback for just £194 per month
Ford Focus - front dynamic
Deals
8 Jan 2024

Hot car deal: sporty Ford Focus hatchback for just £194 per month

Top 10 best used family cars 2024
The best used family cars hero
Best cars
29 Nov 2023

Top 10 best used family cars 2024

Ford Focus review
Ford Focus - front 3/4 dynamic
In-depth reviews
12 Oct 2023

Ford Focus review

Have You Considered

Vauxhall Astra review - striking hatchback with updated tech
vauxhall astra uk
In-depth reviews
6 Jun 2024

Vauxhall Astra review - striking hatchback with updated tech

DS 4 review – French model takes on premium rivals
DS 4 hatchback UK front 3/4 tracking
In-depth reviews
3 Jun 2024

DS 4 review – French model takes on premium rivals

Most Popular

New Alpine A290: fast, stylish and very blue electric hot hatchback revealed
Alpine A290 front quarter
News
13 Jun 2024

New Alpine A290: fast, stylish and very blue electric hot hatchback revealed

Engine management light: what to do if it comes on
Engine warning light
Tips and advice
12 Jun 2024

Engine management light: what to do if it comes on

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers
Carbuyer best new car deals hero
Deals
14 Jun 2024

Best new car deals 2024: this week’s top car offers

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
26 Mar 2024

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Public EV charge point
Tips and advice
11 Jan 2023

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
21 Mar 2024

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors

Top 10 best electric cars 2024
Best electric cars
Best cars
16 May 2024

Top 10 best electric cars 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024
The best cheap-to-run cars 2023
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024
Fastest hot hatchbacks hero
Best cars
2 Jan 2024

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2024