2014 Ford Focus ST vs the Used Competition.
So you’re in the market for a car. But not just any car, you want a practical performance car. Well we here at FordAddict have the perfect option; the 2014 Focus ST. A 2.0 Liter 4 cylinder Turbo with a 6-Speed Manual, Room for 5, and in a practical hatchback body style too! Need we go any further? Well we will. The Ford Focus ST provides an amazing performance bargain with a base price of a little over $23,000. For an ST3 packaged car, the MSRP is $27,750. For this you get features such as Heated Leather Recaro Seats, HID headlights, Ford SYNC, MyFord Touch with navigation, Sirius XM, and Dual Zone Climate Controls. Features like these were only available on higher end vehicles costing upwards of $50k only just a few years ago!
This got us thinking, what other practical performance cars can you find for this price, and do they come as well equipped as the ST? So we branched out from our Ford addicted ways and searched online to find a few vehicles we think could fit the bill. We looked for practicality, power, and aggressive styling like the ST. So here’s what we’ve found.
The Upscale Choice: 2011 BMW 335i
We found this BMW for sale on Cars.com. It has 60,331 miles and is being offered for $27,900, just $150 more than the ST. This BMW comes with a 6-Speed Manual and a Turbocharged engine, like the ST. It can also seat five and has a big trunk, you guessed it, like the ST. But we looked into this vehicle more. It does put out 300 horsepower and is rear wheel drive, true to a classic sports sedan pedigree, but it lacks a lot of the features of the Focus. It has Leatherette seats, not real leather, and they aren’t heated either. It is not equipped with a navigation system or a touch screen. Plus it does have higher mileage, and it’s out of its original factory warranty period, so maintenance is going to issue as this vehicle gets older. Then we looked at the original base price… close to $42,000. Yeah, not much of a bargain for the original owner…
The Bigger is Better Choice: 2007 Dodge Charger SRT8
This choice is probably the more extreme choice. For starters it puts out twice the power of the ST through a 6.1L V8, has a longer wheelbase, and has an Automatic transmission. If the transmission choice causes you to skip this one, we understand, but just hear us out. This Charger costs $25,997 and only has 28,810 miles. So its bigger, more powerful, and has really low mileage. Good choice? Maybe, if you don’t mind getting 13 MPG city on a good day, and the Navigation system is an older unit so it won’t be as up to date, so it won’t exactly impress. But it does have Heated Leather seats with suede inserts, which is pretty cool, and aggressive looks that make people get out of your way on the highway, so that’s gotta be worth some points. But with a 120” wheelbase and an Automatic, this boat is probably better on the highway instead of some twisty roads.
The Similar Performance Choice: 2011 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution GSR
Like the Focus ST, the Evolution is a performance variant of an economy car. Both cars have the agility and go fast parts that separate it from the base models, same wheelbase, similar engine displacements from 2.0L Turbo Engines, and room for five. Both also have distinct styling and will capture the attention of any car nut when driving down the road. However, some aspects are different and this greatly changes the equation. The Evo only has a 5-Speed Manual, and gets worse gas mileage at 17 MPG city. Cloth Recaro seats, no Navigation system, an older stereo, and less cargo space make the Evo a less practical choice as a daily driver. Plus this Evo has some modifications which may have voided the remaining factory warranty. However, as a true price and performance comparison, the Evo seems to be a solid competitor.
Overall, these used alternatives provide an interesting look at what is out there for a Focus ST to compete with. Similar features, prices, and overall performance are what make these vehicles up to the task of hanging in the same league with the Focus ST. Whether or not you’re willing to take the risk of owning these older vehicles out of warranty is a big factor, but we’ll still take home the new ST with a warranty.