When the head of Ford’s Special Vehicles Team (SVT) jetted for another opportunity at Volkswagen, Ford was left debating what to do with the popular RS line of vehicles, which we unfortunately have yet to see in the U.S. Up until recently, it has been pretty much a certainty that the Focus RS would simply carry on into its third generation, but according to Autocar, Ford is becoming a little indecisive since SVT’s recent shakeup.
Now Ford is starting to consider replacing the popular Focus RS with the Fiesta RS. The biggest reason for Ford’s reconsidering of the Focus RS is the fact that the newest generation of the Focus will not include a three-door hatchback, the staple body style for the RS line. The Fiesta, on the other hand, is available in a three-door hatchback in the European market, making it the obvious replacement.
It looks as if the RS might just make it to the U.S. market in this generation, as the other main part of the holdup on Ford’s decision is the fact that the U.S. market would likely prefer the larger and more powerful Focus RS over the compact Fiesta RS. That would give the U.S. market a nice group of performance compact Fords, regardless of the model it chooses. The Focus ST is already heading to the states and the Fiesta ST is in development, which will also likely come to the States. Add in the RS line and that gives us three hot Ford compacts to play around with.
We honestly think that given the recent market swing toward quick hatchback models, Ford would be best suited to get into that market early by handing the Fiesta the “RS” badge. If Ford manages to get into the hot-hatch market early enough with the Fiesta RS, it could benefit the entire Fiesta lineup in coming years.
We will continue to keep you updated on this growing story as more details emerge.
This is the kind of giveaway that can pretty much put a smile on just about everyone’s face. Rockstar has teamed up with Ford to give away one of three models as part of their "Drive like a Champion" giveaway. The winner can choose between the 2013 Ford Focus ST, the 2013 Ford Mustang GT and the 2012 Ford F-150, and all they have to do us head over to www.rockstar69.com/drive to enter.
Entering the contest is easy too. Contestants need to choose between Tanner Foust or Brian Deegan, then choose one of the three models, type in your contact information, and patiently wait until October 15, 2012 for the winners to be announced. We wish there was some sort of virtual race to win, but unfortunately, it’s all random. Of course, you have to be a United States resident and be at least eighteen (18) years of age at the time of entry to be able to enter the contest, as well as read the official terms of the contest in all of its fine print glory.
Even if you don’t end up winning one of Ford’s pride and joys, you can still win a few other prizes, including a year supply of Rockstar. That’ll get your engines revving!
Let us know which of the three models you would like to win in the comments section below! But remember, in order to be entered into the contest, you must head over to www.rockstar69.com/drive!
After a very long wait, Ford has finally unveiled the production version of the dramatic new Focus ST at the Frankfurt Motor Show, and they’ve also announced that, next to the standard five-door model, Europeans will also be getting a station wagon version. The Focus ST is Ford’s first truly global performance car and Ford promises it will combine power with fuel efficiency and an impressive handling characteristic.
For the new model, Ford has tuned the 2.0-liter Ford EcoBoost engine with a redesigned intake and a new exhaust system with a unique engine calibration for a total output of 250 HP. The engine was combined with a 6-speed manual transmission which has also been specially revised for the ST.
Ford has also announced that many of the design elements seen in the Focus ST will also be used in all the future ST models. These elements include the aggressively enhanced front and rear bumpers and the addition of a rear spoiler and sideskirts, plus a unique signature color.
UPDATE 05/01/2012: All hatchback performance enthusiasts are monitoring the upcoming release of the new Ford Focus ST salivating like a pack of dogs surrounding a meaty T-bone steak. There is good reason for this excitement, as this 2.0-liter turbocharged Focus pumps out a stout 247 horsepower and 265 pound-feet of torque, which is an astonishing 45 percent more horsepower and 83 percent more torque than the final model year of the Focus SVT (2004).
Well, the Ford Focus ST ordering books are now open and prices have been revealed. Let’s start with the base model Focus ST, which it is set at $23,700. The Ford Focus ST2 (group 201A) has a base MSRP of $26,205 minus a $120 discount and the ST3 (group 202A) has a base MSRP of $28,540 minus a $405 discount. Granted, this is all barring dealerships doing the ultimate screw-the-customer move and slapping a “Market-Based Markup” on the sticker price. Hit the jump for more pricing details!
UPDATE 07/17/12: Ford has released a new video of their highly amazing Focus ST doing what it does best: running roughshod over the race track and calling out some of its competitors. Heck, Ken Block and Tanner Foust are also in the video. Good times all around! Check it out by clicking on the photo above!
UPDATE 01/22/13: The Ford Focus ST is now available in the UK with a base price £16,995. Depending on the trim and options you avail, expect that price to go up significantly.
Hit the jump to read more about the Ford Focus ST. Full story
So it is official, Ford has gone absolutely crazy with the EcoBoost trend, but it’s a good crazy, as the EcoBoost both lowers emissions and sharply increases fuel economy. The latest engine to spool its way into the EcoBoost lineup is the all-new 1.0-liter inline three-cylinder version. When most people think of a 1.0-liter three-banger, they tend to picture the early-1990s Metro with its concrete massaging 49 horsepower zipping it to 60 mph sometime in the next century, while driving downhill.
Fortunately, this isn’t your Metro’s three-cylinder engine. This boosted three-banger will pump out a respectable 98 horsepower on the base level and an even more impressive 125 horsepower on the top-level engine, the latter exceeding the current 1.6-liter’s output by 5 horsepower.
FEV, the leading developer for this engine, also claims that both versions of the engine will twist out 125 pound-feet of torque, which is 13 more pound-feet than the 1.6-liter engine and it saves 20 pounds worth of weight compared to the 1.6-liter.
The press release makes it a little unclear as to whether or not this new EcoBoost will be offered in the U.S., but given the fact that it mentions the 1.6-liter in a Focus, and it being offered in the C-Max and B-Max, we can assume that it will start off in the U.K., as the B-Max and C-Max are U.K. models, and the Focus only comes with the 1.6-liter in the U.K. . Granted, the C-Max is coming to the U.S., but as a hybrid model only.
With the power output of this engine, you can expect to see it making its way over here soon. The likely host for it would be the Ford Fiesta, as it is more accepted with a smaller engine. Focus buyers would generally not accept a 1.0-liter-powered model.
We will continue to keep an eye on this and let you know if Ford makes mention of it coming to the U.S. or not.
Click past the jump to read FEV’s full press release
The Zetec S is back, baby!
At least some of us are happy about it while the rest of the population can only kick the sand in envy.
The 2012 Ford Focus Zetec ST is the sportiest version of the Focus short of the ST model. Fans of the Focus in the UK will once again get the treat of dibs as the hot hatchback is being primed for a UK release.
The Focus Zetec S will come with numerous styling cues, including a new sports styling kit, a new sports suspension set-up, LED taillights, and a new set of 17" alloy wheels. Inside, the added goodies for the Focus Zetec S include aluminium-style sports pedals and a starter button.
Under the hood, the Focus Zetec S will feature a 1.6-liter EcoBoost turbo-charged engine that produces an output of 180 horsepower with a 0-62 mph time of 7.9 seconds and a top speed of 138 mph. Despite its numbers, the Focus Zetec S is capable of only emitting just 139 grams of CO2 per Km.
Other than the 1.6-liter EcoBoost turbocharged engine, the Focus Zetec S will also have a 1.6-liter Ti-VCT engine that produces 125 horsepower and a 2.0-liter TDCi that has an output of 163 horsepower.
Then there are the optional items that are being offered for the Focus Zetec S, which reads like a list of things you’d want to have on your car. There’s the Driver Assistance Pack, cruise control with Active Speed Limiter, heated front seats, a power driver seat and power rear windows, to name a few.
So, are you interested in the Focus Zetec S? If you are, you should know that it costs £18,745, which is around $29,300 based on current exchange rates.
Hatchbacks may not offer the same kind of thrill as sports cars and muscle cars. They also don’t have the utility of SUVs and pick-ups. Heck, they’re not so much for luxury, either. But at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show, hatchbacks will have their turn in the spotlight as a host of custom-modded hatches will be making their way to Las Vegas.
This list comprises most of the vehicles you’ll see. There are Scions iQs, Ford Fiestas, Ford Focus, and even a Lexus CT200h. Not only are these vehicles modded to the brim, but they also give us an idea on all the possibilities that come with aftermarket works being done on hatches.
The people who think that hatches aren’t cool enough should take a good look at this list and if they don’t change their minds, then they really need to check themselves before they wreck themselves.
But for those like us that enjoy modded hatchbacks, this list will tell us all the vehicles we need to look out for at the SEMA Auto Show.
Check out the 2011 SEMA Auto Show: Hatchbacks after the jump. Full story
Galpin Auto Sports isn’t the type that anyone would consider tame. The American aftermarket tuning company speaks the language of aggression and all that certainly manifested itself in their latest Ford Focus project called the "ATK."
You don’t need to be a genius to figure out that "ATK" stands for ’attack’ and that’s exactly what this car is all about. The sports hatch offers a fantastic aesthetic look, thanks to an Alchemy Gray paint finish coated with metallic gold pearls by PPG. The attractive paint job on the Focus ATK is complemented by a new 3d Carbon rear spoiler, gloss-black badges, and frosted taillights. The Focus also gets handling and set-up improvements, thanks to the addition of Eibach lowering springs, a Borla exhaust system, and a set of 19" gold powdercoated Monotech wheels with Vredestein tires.
GAS’ extensive program for the Ford Focus ATK continues with a completely mind-blowing custom Katzkin leather and suede interior dress-up and an equally ear-splitting new sound system courtesy of JL Audio. The latter includes two 8W7s, two digital amplifiers, and four 6.5” speakers, all housed in a custom enclosure.
As with most street menaces go, Galpin Auto Sports’ Ford Focus ATK is built to attack the streets and look good while doing it.
UPDATE 12/10/11: Galpin Auto Sports has released a new batch of photos for their Ford Focus ATK program. Check out the new pics in the gallery below!
For automakers, there’s nothing better than showing up at the debut for one of your automobiles and getting a top notch award for your hard work. Aston Martin, Cadillac, and Ford will vouch for that since their One-77, Ciel Concept, and Focus Plug-In Electric Vehicle were all given best in show awards at the 41st annual South Florida International Auto Show (SFIAS) by the Southern Automotive Media Association (SAMA). SAMA had to choose between many of the participants in Miami, but in the end, these vehicles were chosen because of their styling and marketability.
The Aston Martin One-77 was awarded the “Star of the Show” trophy because the nine-member SAMA judging panel decided it was the single vehicle on display at the show that South Floridians will most want to see. Other vehicles considered for the award were the Audi A7, the Lexus GS sedan, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, the Toyota Camry, the Range Rover Evoque, and the Hyundai Veloster.
The Cadillac Ciel Concept was given the Best Concept Vehicle in the Show because of its stunning beauty and because SAMA considered it a forerunner of future Cadillac styling. Meanwhile, the Ford Focus Plug-In Electric Vehicle took home the “Best Green Technology Vehicle” in the show because of the fact that it is Ford’s first non-emissions, plug-in electric car to be mass produced and marketed in the United States. Other vehicles considered were the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, the Toyota Prius V, and various manufacturers’ hybrid and clean diesel technology vehicles.
The South Florida International Auto Show (SFIAS) runs until November 6, 2011, so stop by the Miami Beach Convention Center to check out these award-winning models.
Look at all of the Ford Focus models headed to SEMA and we’re not going to blame you if your head starts to spin. We understood the whole point of a show like SEMA, but all the Focus models that will be in attendance - seven in all - will be tuning heaven for fans of Ford’s sports hatchback.
COBB Tuning is one of the aftermarket companies that worked on the Focus, and they’re bringing a program that’s as extensive - maybe even more - as any of the other Focus models.
Called the ’Motorsports Challenger Focus’, the COBB-tuned Focus features a carbon fiber hood, a redesigned front bumper, and a large rear wing on the exterior. As far as performance modifications are concerned, the Focus the following items: a custom turbo kit mated to a new exhaust manifold, a front-mounted intercooler, intake, and airbox set-up, Cosworth forged pistons.
The Focus’ chassis was also upgraded, courtesy of a StopTech Trophy big brake kit, an Eibach Multi-Pro R2 coilover suspension, and COBB Tuning’s own suspension bushings.
The improved performance numbers have yet to be announced, but you can definitely expect a significant increase in power for the Blue Oval’s popular sports hatchback.
Of the seven Ford Focus models that were displayed at the SEMA Auto Show, picking one as our favorite is like picking what kind of beer we like the best. There are plenty of great choices that makes singling one out next to impossible.
But if we HAVE to choose one, we’d find it extremely difficult to bypass ID Agency’s Ford Focus.
According to the ID Agency, their work on the Ford Focus was inspired by European and Japanese tuning styles, highlighted by an olive paint finish, a Wraptivo-wrapped roof, a Ford Licensed Accessory Thule bike rack with a Custom Leader bike, a set of Recaro Sportster seats and an interior dressed up by Top Stitch. To go with the aesthetic modifications done on the sport hatch, the ID Agency also made some performance upgrades of its own, including the installation of a new Magnaflow cat-back exhaust and an enormous big brake package courtesy of no less than Brembo Brakes.
If you wanted to be technical about all the modifications, it appears that the ID Agency-tuned Focus isn’t as extensive as its counterparts. But in terms of sheer awesome looks, this one is on a league of its own.
UPDATE 11/07/2011: We have added live images from the 2011 SEMA Show. Check them out in the picture gallery!