2009 Ford Focus Coupe SES

I can't get past the look of the new Focus, particularly in coupe form. I liked the way the old hatchback looked, but this car looks like a joke. And those funky looks are on top of the loss of utility. But the inside of this coupe is much nicer than the last-gen car. I had a rental Focus sedan in Los Angeles a few weeks ago, and that was not such a pleasant experience. The materials are higher quality here, and the design of the interior is much better.

I tried Sync and had very limited success. When I use a Bluetooth system, I want the car to be able to read my phonebook without downloading it. That way you don't have to worry about updating the car's phonebook when you add contacts or change a phone number. I was able to stream Bluetooth audio and it sounded very good. Oddly enough, I could not get Sync to recognize my iPod. I highly doubt my iPod is broken since it worked perfectly on my way to work in the BMW 135i. I've had great success with the Mercedes, BMW, and Infiniti systems. But Sync continues to disappoint me when it comes to iPod integration, which is the feature I want to work the best. I was able to use my iPod with other Sync-equipped Foci in the past, but even then I couldn't get it to read my playlists.

Overall, this is a pretty logical car. Joe DeMatio is right, 35 mpg sounds pretty good to me these days, and it doesn't feel like you are sitting in a budget car when you drive the Focus. I just wish Ford would bring back the hatch.

Phil Floraday, Senior Online Editor

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