North Georgia Ford Compares 2011 Ford Focus VS 2011 Honda Civic Near Jasper, GA

Responsive image

2011 Ford Focus

Responsive image

2011 Honda Civic

Safety Comparison

The Focus has standard AdvanceTrac™, which uses the antilock brake hardware along with powerful software and additional sensors to detect the beginning of a skid. The AdvanceTrac™ then intervenes by automatically applying the brake at one appropriate wheel, preventing a skid. A skid prevention system is only available on the Civic EX-L/Hybrid. A National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study showed that skid control systems reduced single-vehicle car crashes by 30%.

The Focus offers optional SYNC, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get driving directions or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Civic doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies.

Both the Focus and the Civic have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, four wheel antilock brakes and available traction control.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 38.5 MPH side impact tests on new cars. In this test, results indicate that the Focus is safer than the Civic:



Front Seat


5 Stars

4 Stars

Thoracic Trauma



Pelvis Deceleration

79 G’s

80 G’s

More stars indicate a better chance of avoiding serious injuries. Lower numbers indicate better actual numeric test results.

The Focus’ bumpers sustained $3848 less damage than the Civic in four IIHS ( Insurance Institute for Highway Safety) bumper tests.

Warranty Comparison

The Focus comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 60,000 miles. Ford will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Honda doesn’t give free roadside assistance for the Civic.

There are almost 4 times as many Ford dealers as there are Honda dealers, which makes it much easier to get service under the Focus’ warranty.

Reliability Comparison

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Focus has a standard 590 amp battery. The Civic’s 310 amp battery isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Focus first among compact cars in their 2010 Initial Quality Study. The Civic was rated second.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2010 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Honda vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford fifth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 2 more problems per 100 vehicles, Honda is ranked 6th.

Engine Comparison

The Focus’ 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 8 lbs.-ft. more torque (136 vs. 128) than the Civic’s 1.8 VTEC 4 cyl.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Focus’ brake rotors and drums are larger than those on the Civic:



Front Rotors

10.83 inches

10.3 inches

Rear Drums

8 inches

7.9 inches

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Focus SES’ tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Civic (215/45R17 vs. 205/55R16).

The Focus’ standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 60 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Civic DX’s 65 series tires. The Focus SES’ tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Civic LX/EX’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Focus SES has standard 17-inch wheels. The Civic’s largest wheels are only 16 inches.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Focus has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Civic’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For better maneuverability, the Focus’ turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Civic DX Sedan/Hybrid’s (34.2 feet vs. 34.8 feet).

Chassis Comparison

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Focus SE Sedan is quieter than the Civic LX Sedan:



At idle

42 dB

42 dB


74 dB

79 dB

70 MPH Cruising

68 dB

72 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

The Focus has 2.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Civic Sedan (93.4 vs. 90.9).

The Focus Sedan has .9 inches more rear headroom, 1.5 inches more rear legroom and 1.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Civic Sedan.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Focus Sedan has a much larger trunk than the Civic Sedan (13.8 vs. 12 cubic feet).

To allow full utilization of available cargo room, the Focus’ trunk lid uses gas strut supported hinges that don’t intrude into the trunk. The Civic’s useful trunk space is reduced by its intrusive beam hinge.

The Focus’ standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The Civic DX/LX’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

Ergonomics Comparison

The Focus (except S) offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The Civic doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The engine computer on the Focus automatically engages the starter until the car starts with one twist of the key and disables the starter while the engine is running. The Civic’s starter can be accidentally engaged while the engine is running, making a grinding noise and possibly damaging the starter and ring gear.

The Focus SE/SEL/SES’ available driver’s power window lowers with one touch of the window control, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths. The Civic’s power windows’ switch has to be held the entire time to open it fully.

The Focus’ standard power locks allow the driver or passenger to lock or unlock all the doors at a touch without leaning over, or reaching to the back seat. The Civic DX doesn’t offer power locks.

The Focus’ variable intermittent wipers have an adjustable delay to allow the driver to choose a setting that best clears the windshield during light rain or mist. The Civic DX/LX’s standard fixed intermittent wipers only have one fixed delay setting, so the driver will have to manually switch them between slow and intermittent.

Consumer Reports rated the Focus’ headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the Civic’s headlights, which were rated “Fair.”

The Focus has standard power remote mirrors. The Civic DX doesn’t offer either a remote driver side or passenger side mirror. The driver will have to roll down the windows and reach across the car to adjust the mirrors.

The Focus’ optional rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Civic doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.

The Focus has a standard center folding armrest for the driver and front passenger. A center armrest helps combat driver fatigue. The Civic DX doesn’t offer a front seat center armrest.

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the Focus owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Focus with a number “3” insurance rate while the Civic is rated higher at a number “1” to “5” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Focus is less expensive to operate than the Civic because typical repairs cost less on the Focus than the Civic, including $32 less for a water pump, $13 less for a starter, $112 less for fuel injection, $71 less for front struts, $67 less for a timing belt/chain and $1 less for a power steering pump.

© 1991-2016 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. Who We Are
Click here to view the disclaimers, limitations and notices about EPA fuel mileage, crash tests, coprights, trademarks, and other issues.