i would not sugest cheap. if i was u i would get quality tires. i got arctic alpines and they are great in the slush (great for plowed roads). and i hear blizaks are great for packed snow (unplowed roads)
Also, it has been my experience that even cheap snow tires are way better than any all season. Especially if they are not as wide as your summer/all season tires. I paid somewhere just over $300 shipped last fall for 4 Kumho I Zen KW11 snow tires mounted and balanced on new 15" steel wheels. Although it took me some time to get used to how they felt on the dry road(felt like I was driving on sand), they worked great in as much as 8" of fresh snow. I never got to try them out on much ice. Also, I put around 6k on them and they showed almost zero wear.
205/50-16 Blizzaks mounted on ASA JS1's would be about $950 delivered. There's not 15" steel wheel available that will clear the brakes nor do we have a 16" steel wheel. The Kumho KW11 snows are not available in this size or compatible size.
Another option is to try and find yourself some 16" take-off wheels from either the classifieds, ebay, or a salvage yard. The going rate is around $200 for four wheels in decent condition.
Plus, you may save yourself a few bucks and have a better handling snow tire if you go with a skinnier 195/55-15. The overall diameter is slightly larger, but if you are at stock SVT ride height and are running OEM offset wheels, you shouldn't have any problems with rubbing.
Again, sorry for the mix up. I didn't read your sig.
I would stay away from steelies if at all possible. 16" steelies will be HEAVY, which will ruin the ride and dull performance. Stock 16's are considerably lighter and more than up to the job for snow-tire duty. Plus, they're everywhere. I've seen 16" stock rims go for as low as $125.
Seeing where you live, you'll probably want a snow tire made more for slushy and icy conditions rather than an all-out deep snow tire. That would steer me towards a set of Michelin Arctic Alpins, which are great on dry road and in icy & slushy conditions, while trading off some deep-snow ability.
The Kuhmo's are indeed excellent tires, particularly for the price. My ZX5 was a ball to drive in the snow on them. I once did a 25-mile blast down a road under foot-deep snow w/ 2 foot drifts at about 40-50 mph. I packed the engine compartment full of snow and had a solid-ice transmission mount for a week. Not healthy for the car, but fun as hell.
Definitely get those snows as skinny as possible; the Focus is simply too light to cut through snow and slush on 205's and 215's. Take a look at the rally guys when they're running snows; notice how skinny those things are?
I agree. I was running the 205/55/16 setup for a while and boy did my car sway to and fro on the white stuff. It was like I was drifting (in my autotragic) it was wonderful, until i wanted to gain control, which became a braking nightmare. The rear drums would lock and cause me to loose all control, but was fun as hell. Id definatly go KUMHO, my sister has a ZX2 and shes runnin the 185/60/15's and damn they handle good even fro a 60 series tire and haven't wore a bit. They do have a slight noise when channeling water, but what tire doesn't (I think they are 706's may be discontiued, they were 30 a piece and she loves them. I love making her happy, gives me less to hear her want me to fix. By the way, her ZX2 can outrun me flat, but I get her in the 2-3 downshift.....gotta love faking a stick.