Take this rumor with a grain of salt for the time being

The current Ford Focus RS is on schedule to leave us on April 6. When that day comes, we’ll be left with a Focus RS-sized hole in our lives. Ford has yet to confirm plans to build a new version that will be based on the next-generation Focus, but there are already rumors that it’s going to happen at some point in the future. More importantly, the same rumors suggest that the next-gen Focus RS is going to come with a hybrid system.

2016 Ford Focus RS High Resolution Exterior
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The next-gen Focus RS will feature a 48-volt, mild-hybrid system that can produce as much as 400 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque.

For the record, the rumor comes by way of Dutch publication Auto International, which claims that not only is a new Ford Focus RS in the works, but it’s also going to be a hybrid. Specifically, the publication says that the next-gen Focus RS will feature a 48-volt, mild-hybrid system that can produce as much as 400 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque.

A lot of things about this rumor shouldn’t be taken seriously at the moment. First, there’s the possibility that it’s actually happening. That’s the good news. The bad news is that while we are confident that Ford is going to create an RS model of the next-gen Focus, we tend to keep our expectations down because the Blue Oval has been known to disappoint in the past. And, even if a new Focus RS is coming, it’s not arriving until the fourth-gen Focus is deep into its life cycle. That’s just how it goes. Take the current-generation Focus, for example. The hatchback was launched in 2011, and it took four years (2015) for the Focus RS arrived. We expect a similar timetable for the fourth-generation Focus, so if that model is launched this year, the RS version won’t arrive before 2022.

Is The Next-Gen Ford Focus RS Going to Come With a Hybrid? Exterior
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We expect a similar timetable for the fourth-generation Focus, so if that model is launched this year, the RS version won't arrive before 2022.

The timetable leads to the second point: the rumored hybrid system. It’s an intriguing thought, for sure, but if we’re talking about a model that’s still four years away from launching, it’s not hard to imagine some changes and modifications to its development along the way. That’s just the nature of the auto industry. The fourth-generation Ford Focus might still get a hybrid system - it is a logical choice considering where the industry is headed — but it’s just too early to start hammering home the specifics. Take a look at what the Focus RS can do now with a Mountune performance kit. It’s already capable of producing 370 horsepower. Are 400 ponies and 394 pound-feet of torque the goal or the baseline?

We all want to think that this rumor has some merit to it. Maybe it does. But at this point, it’s hard to take it seriously unless Ford at least confirms plans for a next-generation Focus RS. Until then, it’s just too early to tell if it’s happening or not.

References

Ford Focus RS

Is The Next-Gen Ford Focus RS Going to Come With a Hybrid? High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review on the 2017 Ford Focus RS.

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Read more Ford news.

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