After the Ford Focus ST hot hatchback debuts in 2012, Ford might launch a higher-performance version called the Focus RS. That’s according to Ford’s C-segment vehicle line director Gunnar Herrmann, in an interview with Australia’s The Sydney Morning Herald.
Sound familiar? The RS name was used on the previous iteration of the ultimate go-fast Focus, which was not sold in America. It had a turbocharged 2.5-liter inline-five pushing 305 hp to the front wheels. According to Herrmann’s comments, a new iteration of the Focus RS will debut in 2013 or 2014. It will have a compact turbocharged engine, possibly the same 2.5-liter inline-five or a 2.0-liter inline-four. Based on experience tuning the limited-run RS500, Herrmann claims Ford could extract 350 hp to 380 hp from the new RS.
To help quell torque steer under hard acceleration, the Focus RS would employ RevoKnuckle, Ford’s special front-suspension design that helps prevent the steering from twisting under high torque loads. It will remain a front-wheel-drive model, as all-wheel-drive is reportedly unlikely to reach production.
Before the Focus RS arrives, Ford has confirmed it will launch a new Focus ST based on the current-generation Focus five-door.The Focus ST is slated to employ a 2.0-liter EcoBoost inline-four with 246 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque. According to Herrmann, the Focus ST won’t score RevoKnucle suspension because the setup is too expensive. (And with “only” 246 hp on tap, torque steer won’t be as big an issue as it was on the old, 305-hp RS.)
We reached out to Ford SVT spokesman Henry Platts for comment, but he said he couldn’t confirm or deny plans for a Focus RS. He told us that for now the company is directing all its attention to launching the Focus ST, intimating that Ford RS models are “a real special occasion.” The Focus ST should go on sale about a year from now. Platts also said he couldn’t comment on whether the ST will employ RevoKnuckle.
Ford, however, has stirred our interest by promising that it will reveal information on “the next Focus performance car” at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. That could mean we finally get the full scoop on the Focus ST, or perhaps that Ford plans to unveil a Focus RS model. Either way, hot-hatchback fans are sure to be satisfied.
Source: The Sydney Morning Herald