Types of Gas a Ford Focus Takes

Types of Gas a Ford Focus Takes: All Generations

If you fancy getting a Ford Focus, whether it be in hatchback or sedan form, then it’s also essential to consider the types of fuel that it can and cannot take.

Like any other vehicle with an internal combustion engine, the Ford Focus has its own set of fuel requirements (and limitations) so that it runs properly.

Hence, we’ve gathered the types of gas or fuel that you can use for all Ford Focus generations in this guide. We’ve also included other useful info such as the gas tank size and fuel mileage of each model, so be sure to have a thorough read!

What kind of gas does a Ford Focus take?

Most Ford Focus models can take regular 87-octane (91 RON) gas, except for those with either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 2.5L I5 turbo engine, which take premium 91 to 93-octane (95 to 98 RON) gas.

Models in other countries also have diesel engines that can take EN590 diesel or B20 biodiesel.

What kind of gas does a Ford Focus take

When it comes to compatible fuel types, there’s actually not that much that separates a Ford Focus model from other variants.

The majority of Ford Focus models are equipped with gas-powered engines that can run just on regular 87-octane gasoline, which is equivalent to 91 RON gas for those living outside the US.

However, there are specific models that require higher-octane fuel for better performance, such as those equipped with 6-speed manual transmissions. Such models require at least 91-octane fuel in the tank.

Furthermore, all Focus models that sport the turbocharged 2.5-liter Inline-5 (I5) engine also require a minimum of 91-octane gas, though for the most optimum performance, switching to premium 93-octane gas is recommended by Ford.

Diesel variants, on the other hand, are a bit more limited in number due to being sold only in select countries in Europe, Asia, and other parts of the world.

According to the owner’s manual, Ford Focus diesel models should be filled up with diesel fuel that meets either the EN 590 specification for diesel vehicles in Europe or any other equivalent national specification. 

To give you further background on the differences in fuel types between each Ford Focus model, we’ll be listing down all of the Ford Focus generations and engine options one by one in the next part.

Ford Focus Fuel Requirements by Generation and Engine Option

All Ford Focus generations and engines require at least regular 87-octane (91 RON) gasoline, except for 6-speed manual models and 2.5L I5 turbo models that require at least premium 91-octane (95 RON) gas.

Ford Focus diesel models require diesel fuel that meets the EN 590 specification in Europe.

1st-Generation Ford Focus (C170)

1st-Generation Ford Focus (C170)

North American Market (2000 to 2007)

Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
2.0L CVH Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Zetec Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Duratec Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.3L Duratec Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Zetec Inline-4 (I4) (SVT)(6-Speed Manual)91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)

The Ford Focus first was initially made for the European market back in 1998, but it eventually made it to North American shores for the 2000 model year.

The 1st-gen Ford Focus gave North America a choice of five different 4-cylinder engines, four of which have 2 liters of displacement.

However, the 6-speed manual version of the 2-liter Zetec I4 found in the FVT model is the only one that actually requires a minimum of premium 91-octane gas, though 93-octane gas is recommended for optimum performance.

Otherwise, the rest of the 2-liter engines as well as the sole 2.3-liter Duratec option will run just fine with regular 87-octane gasoline. 

European Market (1998 to 2005)

Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
1.4L Zetec-SE Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L Zetec-SE Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.8L Zetec-R Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Zetec-R Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Duratec-ST Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Duratec-RS Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)

2.0L Zetec Inline-4 (I4) Turbo(ST170/RS)(6-Speed Manual)

91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)
1.8L Endura-DI Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel
1.8L Duratorq TDCI Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel

European models of the 1st-gen Ford Focus were part of the first batch of the compact car to be ever introduced worldwide in 1998, the same year that it replaced the Ford Escort.

The Europe-spec Ford Focus, which adapts the same “C170” design code as its North American counterpart, offered more variety in its lineup of engines.

For starters, smaller-displacement engines were available in the form of the 1.4-liter, 1.6-liter, and 1.8-liter Zetec I4 engines. It was also given 2-liter Zetec and Duratec engines similar to those found in North American models.

All of the above-mentioned 4-cylinder engine options are designed to run on regular 87-octane gasoline at minimum.

However, the top-of-the-line gasoline (petrol) engine of the bunch was the turbocharged version of the 2-liter Zetec I4 used exclusively for the ST170 and RS models, which are both equipped with 6-speed manual transmissions and require 91-octane fuel.

Furthermore, European 1st-gen Ford Focus models also received two different turbocharged diesel engines, namely the 1.8-liter Endura-DI I4 and the 1.8-liter Duratorq TDCI I4. Obviously, not a single drop of gasoline should ever be used in these models.

2nd-Generation Ford Focus 

North American Market (C170) (2008 to 2011)

North American Market (C170) (2008 to 2011)
Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
2.0L Duratec 20 Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)

The 2nd-gen Ford Focus for the North American market still remained on the same “C170” platform as the last generation, and it was only briefly made between 2008 and 2011.

Not only was it designed differently from the European version, but the North American 2nd-gen Ford Focus only received one engine option, the 2-liter Duratec I4, for the entirety of its production run.

The 2-liter Duratec I4 fitted in the North American 2nd-gen Focus requires 87-octane gasoline and is paired with either a 4-speed automatic or 5-speed manual transmission. 

European/International Market (C307) (2005 to 2014)

European/International Market (C307) (2005 to 2014)
Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
1.4L Duratec Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L Duratec Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L Duratec Ti-VCT Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.8L Duratec HE Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Duratec HE Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.5L Duratec ST Inline-5 (I5) Turbo91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)
2.5L Duratec RS Inline-5 (I5) Turbo91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)
2.5L Duratec RS 500 Inline-5 (I5) Turbo91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)
1.6L Duratorq TDCi Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel
1.8L Duratorq TDCi Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel
2.0L Duratorq TDCi Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel

The 2nd-gen Ford Focus debuted earlier for the European Market and other international markets in 2005. Also commonly called the “Focus Mk.2”, it was given the “C307” design code. 

A stark contrast to the North American version, the European and international 2nd-gen Focus model offered a plethora of engine options depending on the specific country.

The smallest engine was the 1.4-liter Duratec I4, which is actually an upgraded version of the previous gen’s 1.4-liter “Zetec” engine that made its way back to the 2nd-gen model.

This is also the same story for the bigger 1.6-liter, 1.8-liter, and 2-liter engines of the previous-gen Focus, which now bear the “Duratec” badge for this generation of the Focus.

Three versions of the newer turbocharged 2.5-liter Duratec I4 powered the sportier ST, RS, and RS500 trims of the 2nd-gen Ford Focus, all of which require 91-octane fuel with 93-octane being recommended to achieve the best performance numbers.

The lower-level engine trims mentioned, however, don’t really need premium fuel to run properly, so regular 87-octane gas will suffice.

As for the diesel variants, another 1.8-liter Duratorq I4 was offered alongside a smaller 1.6-liter diesel and a larger 2-liter diesel version.

3rd-Generation Ford Focus (C346)

3rd-Generation Ford Focus (C346)

North American Market (2012 to 2019)

Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
1.0L EcoBoost Inline-3 (I3) Turbo87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L Duratec Ti-VCT GDI Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)(E-85/Flex-Fuel Capable from 2012)
2.0L Duratec Ti-VCT GDI Inline-4 (I4)(PZEV)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.0L EcoBoost GDI Inline-4 (I4) Turbo(Focus ST)(6-Speed Manual)91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)
2.3L EcoBoost GDI Inline-4 (I4) Turbo
(Focus RS)(6-Speed Manual)
91-Octane Gasoline (Premium)(93-Octane Recommended)

By the 2012 model year, the 3rd-gen Ford Focus was finally built and offered on a new “C346” platform for North American dealerships.

This time around, North American 3rd-gen Focus models received five different engines to choose from, which are composed of updated 4-cylinder Duratec engines and newer EcoBoost engines.

The 3rd-gen Ford Focus saw the debut of a 1-liter 3-cylinder EcoBoost engine to save more on fuel, which works quite well with the fact that you only need to use regular 87-octane fuel for it.

However, those that want a bit more power go for the 2-liter Duratec I4, which comes with E-85/Flex-Fuel capability starting from the 2012 model year.

Moreover, the 2-liter Duratec I4 was also made in a PZEV version for US states that need to adhere to PZEV (Partial Zero-Emissions Vehicle) regulations.

But for those that prefer something more spirited, only either the 2-liter EcoBoost I4 of the Focus ST or the 2.3-liter EcoBoost I4 of the Focus RS can tickle that itch. Both engines come with 6-speed manuals and a 91-octane fuel requirement.

European Market (2010 to 2018)

Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
1.0L EcoBoost Inline-3 (I3) Turbo87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L Duratec Ti-VCT Inline-4 (I4)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L EcoBoost Inline-4 (I4) Turbo87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.6L Duratorq TDCi Inline-4 (I4) Diesel Fuel
2.0L Duratorq TDCi Inline-4 (I4)Diesel Fuel

Moving on to 3rd-gen Ford Focus models from across the pond, European versions of the C346 Focus (or Mk.3 Focus) arrived a little earlier in 2010 compared to their North American equivalents.

The 1-liter EcoBoost I3 can also be found as the base engine for the European Mk.3 Ford Focus. But other Europe-exclusive petrol engines, such as the 1.6-liter Duratec I4 and 1.6-liter EcoBoost I4, have been thrown into the mix as well.

All of these petrol engines can run on regular 87-octane fuel, making any higher-octane fuel not necessary.

Other than that, the two remaining European Mk.3 Focus engine options that don’t take any sort of petrol or gasoline are, of course, the 1.6-liter and 2-liter Duratorq diesel I4s.

4th-Generation Ford Focus (C519) (2018 to 2023/Present)

4th-Generation Ford Focus (C519) (2018 to 2023/Present)
Engine OptionMinimum Fuel Requirement
1.0L EcoBoost Fox Inline-3 (I3) Turbo87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.0L EcoBoost Fox Inline-3 (I3) Turbo (MHEV)87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.5L EcoBoost Dragon Inline-3 (I3) Turbo87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.5L Dragon Ti-VCT Inline-3 (I3) 87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
2.3L EcoBoost Inline-4 (I4) Turbo 87-Octane Gasoline (Regular)
1.5L EcoBlue Panther Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel
2.0L EcoBlue Panther Inline-4 (I4) Turbo DieselDiesel Fuel

While the North American Ford Focus already had its final curtain call (a.k.a. discontinued) back in 2018, the 4th iteration of the compact car continued its production elsewhere in limited markets in Europe, Africa, and Asia.

The first on the 4th-gen (Mk.4) Focus engine lineup is an updated 1-liter EcoBoost I3 called the “Fox”, which also comes with its own MHEV (Mild-Hybrid Electric Vehicle) version.

More new engines have also been added to the list, such as the 1.5-liter “Dragon” I3 and the EcoBlue Panther I4 diesel options.

The 276-hp 2.3-liter EcoBoost I4 tops the 4th-gen Focus’ list of engines performance-wise, which is why it’s offered as one of two options to power the Mk.4 Focus ST variant, with the 2-liter EcoBlue Panther diesel being the other option.

Despite the difference in performance figures, all of the Mk.4 Ford Focus gasoline/petrol engine options only require a minimum of 87-octane gasoline inside their tanks.

Types of Gasoline/Fuel That Can Be Used in a Ford Focus

The Ford Focus can be filled up with TOP TIER detergent gasoline, reformulated gasoline, E-85 (Flex-Fuel models), diesel fuel (diesel models), and up to 20% biodiesel (diesel models).

TOP TIER Detergent Gasoline

TOP TIER Detergent Gasoline

One of the most recommended types of gasoline to use for the Ford Focus and many other vehicles on the round is TOP TIER detergent gasoline.

TOP TIER gasoline is formulated to contain a higher concentration of detergent additives compared to other fuels sold in the US and Canada.

Such detergent additives can safely and effectively prevent the buildup of debris or gunk inside your engine, resulting in optimum performance (paired with regular maintenance, of course).

Since TOP TIER gasoline is available in all grades of octane, you can use it for Ford Focus models that only require regular 87-octane fuel as well as models that require premium 91-octane fuel, like the Focus RS. 

Reformulated Gasoline (RFG)

Reformulated gasoline (RFG) is a relatively common type of fuel that accounts for about 30% of all gasoline sold in the United States.

Compared to conventional gasoline, reformulated gasoline burns cleaner thanks to its blend of less toxic ingredients, which helps in reducing the emission of ozone-forming pollutants and smog.

Because of this, reformulated gasoline is highly recommended and, in some cases, even mandated in US states that have higher levels of air pollution. 

17 of these states, along with the District of Columbia, require reformulated gasoline to be sold at their local gas stations.

Diesel Fuel (EN590 Specification) (Diesel Models)

Diesel Fuel (EN590 Specification) (Diesel Models)

Diesel models of the Ford Focus are only sold in select markets outside the US, such as the European, African, and Asian markets.

Ford Focus diesel variants sold in Europe, in particular, are designed to use high-quality diesel fuel that adheres to the “EN590” specification for diesel-powered vehicles.

The Ford Focus owner’s manual states that any other market that doesn’t adopt the EN590 specification should, by default, use diesel fuel that meets its own national specification.

E-85/Flex-Fuel (Flex-Fuel Models)

E-85/Flex-Fuel (Flex-Fuel Models)

Only FFV (Flex-Fuel) variants of the Ford Focus can use E-85 or “Flex-Fuel”, which is a type of gasoline that’s blended with up to 85% ethanol for renewability and performance.

Such E-85/Flex-Fuel-capable Ford Focus models are those from the 3rd generation (2012 to 2019) equipped with the 2-liter Duratec Ti-VCT GDI I4 engine.

Flex-Fuel vehicle models will come with their own special yellow fuel cap with “E-85” stamped on it. Otherwise, non-FFVs will only come with a regular black gas cap.

E-85/Flex-Fuel (Flex-Fuel Models) 2

If your Ford Focus is not a Flex-Fuel vehicle, do not use any fuel blended with more than 15% ethanol to avoid corroding and damaging engine and fuel system components.  

Up to 20% Biodiesel (B20) (Diesel Models)

Up to 20% Biodiesel (B20) (Diesel Models)

Aside from regular diesel fuel, Ford Focus diesel models can also use biodiesel, which is an alternative diesel fuel made from recycled vegetable oil or animal fats, making it cleaner-burning and more renewable.

However, the use of biodiesel for Ford Focus diesel variants should only be limited to up to 20%, otherwise known as “B20” biodiesel.

Any other fuel that contains more than 20% biodiesel can potentially cause engine deposits to accumulate faster than normal if the engine wasn’t made for it.

Types of Gasoline/Fuel to Avoid for the Ford Focus

Avoid filling up the Ford Focus with gasoline containing MMT, fuel containing kerosene or paraffin, methanol, leaded gasoline, and any fuel that contains metallic-based additives.

Gasoline Containing MMT (Methylcyclopentadienyl Manganese Tricarbonyl)

Gasoline Containing MMT (Methylcyclopentadienyl Manganese Tricarbonyl)

MMT is a type of octane-boosting additive that has been used in both leaded and unleaded gasoline, though many of today’s manufacturers do not recommend using it in their vehicles due to its destructive effects.

The manufacturer recommends avoiding the use of MMT for the Ford Focus, as it can negatively affect components of the emission system and hamper the engine’s performance.

Furthermore, MMT is also pretty toxic, which is one of the initial reasons why it has been banned in most places due to environmental and health concerns that it has caused.

Fuel Containing Kerosene or Paraffin

Part of the list of fuels that you should avoid for the Ford Focus is those that contain either kerosene or paraffin.

According to the manufacturer, fuel containing kerosene or paraffin is not compatible with the Ford Focus, as it may reduce engine performance and damage important emission system components.



Methanol is an oxygenate-based alternative fuel that may sound similar to ethanol fuel, but it’s actually not compatible with your standard Ford Focus.

Often used as a race fuel for performance applications, methanol can have corrosive and damaging effects on engine and fuel system components that are not designed to take it.

So unless you plan on turning your Ford Focus into a Gymkhana stunt car and following in the footsteps of the late Ken Block, you should avoid filling its tank up with any sort of methanol fuel.

Metallic-Based Additives

Any fuel that contains metallic-based additives should also be avoided when choosing compatible fuels for the Ford Focus.

The perfect example of this is non-other than the MMT additive that we’ve already discussed above, as it contains the metallic compound called “Methylcyclopentadienyl Manganese Tricarbonyl”.

As much of a mouthful as it is to say its full name, MMT is also quite notorious for damaging your spark plugs and other parts of your emission system.

Leaded Gasoline

Leaded Gasoline

Leaded gasoline has already been banned for use in land transportation worldwide (apart from some motorsports applications), so it’s absolutely no surprise that Ford does not recommend using it for any Focus model.

Gasoline that contains lead has long been known for causing damage to a vehicle’s catalytic converter. It also raised health concerns in the past due to people experiencing lead poisoning from inhaling emissions from leaded gasoline.

What will happen if I use the wrong gas type?

Using the wrong gas type, such as using lower-octane fuel than what’s required for your vehicle, can cause the engine to knock, reduce engine performance, and damage engine and fuel system components.

Ford Focus Gas Mileage by Generation 

The Ford Focus can achieve a combined gas mileage of 20 to 28 mpg (1st gen), 27 to 29 mpg (2nd gen), 22 to 34 mpg (3rd gen), and 35.3 to 57.6 mpg (4th-gen estimates) depending on the engine option and model year.

1st-Generation Ford Focus Gas Mileage (C170) (2000 to 2007)

Engine OptionMPG (City)MPG (Highway)MPG (Combined)
2.0L Inline-4 (I4)18 to 25 mpg23 to 33 mpg20 to 28 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4)
(Station Wagon)
22 to 25 mpg28 to 33 mpg24 to 28 mpg
2.3L Inline-4 (I4)20 to 22 mpg27 to 29 mpg23 to 25 mpg
2.3L Inline-4 (I4)(Station Wagon)21 to 22 mpg27 to 30 mpg23 to 25 mpg

2nd-Generation Ford Focus Gas Mileage (C170) (2008 to 2011)

Engine OptionMPG (City)MPG (Highway)MPG (Combined)
2.0L Inline-4 (I4)(4-Speed Automatic)24 to 25 mpg33 to 34 mpg27 to 28 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4)(5-Speed Manual)24 to 25 mpg34 to 35 mpg28 to 29 mpg

3rd-Generation Ford Focus Gas Mileage (C346) (2012 to 2019)

Engine OptionMPG (City)MPG (Highway)MPG (Combined)
1.0L Inline-3 (I3) Turbo27 to 30 mpg38 to 41 mpg31 to 34 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4)24 to 27 mpg34 to 39 mpg28 to 31 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4) FFV(Regular Gas)25 to 28 mpg34 to 39 mpg28 to 32 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4) FFV(E-85/Flex-Fuel)18 to 20 mpg25 to 28 mpg21 to 23 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo(6-Speed Manual)23 mpg31 mpg26 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo(Focus ST)22 mpg30 mpg25 mpg
2.3L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo(Focus RS)19 mpg25 to 26 mpg22 mpg

4th-Generation Ford Focus Gas Mileage (C519) (2018 to 2023/Present)

Engine OptionMPG (Estimate)
1.0L Inline-3 (I3) Turbo47.1 to 52.3 mpg
1.0L Inline-3 (I3) Turbo MHEV51.4 to 54.3 mpg
2.3L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo35.3 mpg
1.5L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo Diesel44.1 to 57.6 mpg
2.0L Inline-4 (I4) Turbo Diesel50.4 mpg

What’s the gas tank size of the Ford Focus?

The gas tank size/capacity of the Ford Focus varies from 13.2 to 14 gallons (1st gen), 13.5 gallons (2nd gen), 12.4 gallons (3rd gen), and 12.4 to 14.5 gallons (4th gen) depending on the engine, trim, and model year.

Ford FocusGeneration/Model Years
Engine/Trim Level
Gas Tank Size/Capacity(US Gallon/Liter)

1st Generation(2000 to 2007)(North America)
All 2.0L I4 Trims(2000 to 2004)13.2 gal (50 l)
2.3L I4(ZTW Wagon)(2004)13.2 gal (50 l)
2.3L I4(ZX5 Comfort Hatchback)(2004)
13.2 gal (50 l)
2.3L I4(ZX5 Premium Hatchback)(2004)
13.2 gal (50 l)
All Other 2.3L I4 Trims(2004)14 gal (53 l)
All 2005 to 2007 Trims14 gal (53 l)

2nd Generation(2008 to 2011)(North America)
2.0L I4 (S)13.5 gal (51.1 l)
2.0L I4 (SE)13.5 gal (51.1 l)
2.0L I4 (SES)13.5 gal (51.1 l)
2.0L I4 (SEL)13.5 gal (51.1 l)

3rd Generation(2012 to 2019)(North America)
1.0L I3 (SE)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.0L I4 (S)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.0L I4 (SE)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.0L I4 (SEL)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.0L I4 (Titanium)12.4 gal (47 l)

4th Generation(2018 to 2023/Present)(Limited Markets)
1.0L I3 (2018)14.5 gal (55 l)
1.0L I3 (2020)13.7 gal (52 l)
1.0L I3 MHEV (2020)13.7 gal (52 l)
1.5L I4 (2018)(Manual)13.7 gal (52 l)
1.5L I4 (2018)(Auto)14.5 gal (55 l)
1.5L I4 Diesel (2018)14.5 gal (55 l)
1.5L I4 Diesel (2020)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.0L I4 Diesel (2018)14.5 gal (55 l)
2.0L I4 Diesel (2020)12.4 gal (47 l)
2.3L I4 (ST)(2019)13.7 gal (52 l)
All 2022 to 2023/Present Trims(Gasoline/Petrol)13.7 gal (52 l)
1.5L I4 Diesel (115-hp Trims)(2022 to 2023/Present)13.7 gal (52 l)
1.5L I4 Diesel (120-hp Trims)(2022 to 2023/Present)12.4 gal (47 l)

Frequently Asked Questions