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2.0L engines

my daughter wants to buy a 2004 ford focus with 103,000 miles on a 4 cylinder 2.0L engine. that sounds like alot to me. but i’m mechanically challenged. is that alot? how many miles can she expect to get out of an engine that size?

Engine size is no longer an issue regarding overall life. It depends more on the engine design and how the car was cared for. Does she know well it was maintained?

Most cars are adequately powered for longevity…it’s maintenance and good driving habits; which in my opinion, is just as important.

For that year, the car has about 35,000 miles more than average. How much are we willing to bet that the maintenance wasn’t done on time. I know I would have stretched it to the max if I were going to put that many miles on a car so soon. Do have it checked before any money gets spent. I don’t have much faith in a Focus after 100,000 miles.

The American public does not generally accept under powered cars so there are few if any cars sold in the US in the last 20 years that are underpowered to the point that driving at normal speeds without a trailer would cause any possible longevity issues due to engine size. 

Heck I put about 180,000 miles on a car with a 875cc engine. When I sold it the new owner totaled it within a week. Fortunately he suffered only minor injuries.

What kind of car had an 875cc engine? A 3 cylinder Geo Metro is 1000cc.

Are you asking if 103000 miles is a lot or if a 2 liters is a lot? Neither is a lot. The car should get pretty good gas mileage and last a long time if properly maintained.

As others have said, the size isn’t an issue.

In this case, though, I would spend some time googling problems with dropped valve seats in the Ford 2.0L engines (which I think are actually Mazdas). There is apparently something of a roulette game with valve seats dropping out anywhere from 120K on up. I have no idea if this persisted into '04, but was an issue on late '90s/early '00 models. If this catastrophe doesn’t occur, you can easily expect another 100K or more with basic maintenance.

Looking at Consumer Reports the '01-'05 Focus is rated ‘average’, so it really comes down to how that particular car was cared for.