Differences Between Ford Focus Models

by Sampson Quain
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The compact Ford Focus was upgraded in 2009 to feature a sporty coupe trim, new roof spoiler and increased horsepower. The 2011 Focus continues to showcase the 2009 additions; it also has a two-liter, four-cylinder engine with 140 horsepower. The 2011 Focus comes in four trim options: the S, SE, SES and SEL. The differences between the trims lie in the standard interior and exterior features, base price and available options.

Base Price

The 2011 Ford Focus S starts at $16,640, while the SE starts at $17,270. The SES had a manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) of $18,870, and the SEL's MSRP was $19,670. The difference in price comes from the SES and SEL's sporty trim options and standard features, including leather-wrapped steering and SYNC audio connectivity. These features are not available on the S and SE trims, or they are available only as extra-cost options.


Rear stabilizer bars that keep a vehicle from rolling in a sharp turn come standard with the SES and SEL, but these are not available on the S and SE trims. Other differences among the four trims include European-inspired suspension only available with the S and SE. According to Ford, this suspension helps to sharpen the steering and handling characteristics of the vehicle. Performance-tuned suspension, which provides a larger rear stabilizer bar for a better grip when taking curves, is only available on the SES trim.


A five-speed manual transmission is standard on the S, SE and SES models, and a four-speed automatic transmission is optional. The SEL is only available with a four-speed automatic transmission.


The 2011 Ford Focus SES and SEL trims come standard with metallic instrument panel applique and ambient interior lighting, which are not available on the S and SE trims. Sirius satellite radio connectivity is standard on all trims except the S. Heated front seats and leather-trimmed seats are optional on the SES, standard on the SEL and unavailable on the S and SE trims.


The SES and SEL trims come standard with a chrome exhaust tip, fog lamps and head and tail lamps surrounded by dark chrome. Only the fog lamps are available as an option on the SE trim, and none of these features are available on the S.

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