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Old 08-08-2011, 09:50 AM   #1
AVANTI R5
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Default New Focus RS hot-hatch is go

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More power, still front-wheel drive for next-generation hero Focus, while XR5 Turbo replacement will be rebadged ST for Australia.

Ford has confirmed it is developing a new flagship, RS version of its latest-generation Focus small car.

The company’s global boss for small cars, Gunnar Herrmann, revealed to Drive that the third iteration of the hot-hatch was in the works at this week’s local launch of the all-new Focus.

The current RS was belatedly imported to Australia last year in limited numbers and a $59,990 price tag. It proved to be an impressive engineering feat by putting 224kW of power through the front wheels only, but Ford says the replacement will have more power and continue to ignore all-wheel drive.

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Ford Focus ST

“I think we stay with our two-wheel-drive strategy [for the new RS], which I think was well executed [for the previous version],” says Herrmann, Ford’s German vehicle line director for C-segment (small vehicle) platform.
“I think [more power for the next RS] is sustainable. With the limited edition RS500 [sold only in the UK] we went up to 350 horsepower [261kW] and some of our development units we have them up to 380hp [283kW]. And we even moved torque [upwards].

“And then you really get into engine durability. But [the car] can handle it.”
The new RS, expected in late 2013 or 2014, will continue to employ the so-called ‘Revoknuckle’ suspension that allowed Ford to put 224kW through the front wheels without creating excessive torque steer – the undesirable effect of sometimes violent steering wheel tugs when lots of power is fed through the same wheels trying to direct the car.

Herrmann’s comments suggest there’s no truth to one rumour in the UK that the new RS would become all-wheel-drive by adopting electric motors to power the rear axle.

Herrmann says the current RS’s Volvo-sourced 2.5-litre five-cylinder turbo was a great engine for tuning to higher power levels, and admits Ford’s engineers are still working at extracting more power out of the 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo that will initially power the ST with 184kW.

The ST, which for cost reasons won’t feature the RS’s clever front suspension when it goes on sale in 2012, will also retain its European badge for Australia, Ford has confirmed.

Ford rebadged the existing Focus ST as XR5 Turbo, but the replacement’s switch to a four-cylinder engine has upset the XR naming strategy – including cars such as the inline six-cylinder Falcon XR6 and V8-powered XR8 - that has been based on the cylinder count.

Ford Australia’s sales and marketing boss, Beth Donovan, says the ST badge also makes sense considering the company has changed all the trim level titles for the regular new Focus.

“We went to Titanium from Ghia for Territory and then on Focus, so nomenclature wise we’re not going to be CL, LX or Zetec anymore,” she says. “We’re now Ambiente, Trend, Sport and Titanium.

“And as we introduce new models of passenger cars, that stragety follows. So from a nomenclature perspective, if it’s well thought out... [it works]. The [Focus] RS is a good example of that. People knew what [the badge] was.

“So from our perspective if we’re going to bring it in it’s going to be ST.”
Ford Australia is likely to use the ST badge again for the Fiesta XR4 replacement that should appear later in 2012, but XR will remain for sporty Falcons.

“XR is an icon for Falcon,” says Donovan. “And I really think we can have both those [badges] in the same stable. Customers identity with XR and Falcon; it’s got really strong heritage.”
http://smh.drive.com.au/motor-news/n...804-1id4j.html
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Old 08-08-2011, 09:52 AM   #2
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Quote:
As Ford has been going global with the latest Focus, we used to be jealous of how much better the European Focuses were compared to our North American version. And it still is that way…somewhat.
Rumor has it that Ford is considering an RS version of the latest generation global Ford Focus. This hint comes from Gunnar Herrmann, Ford’s global boss for small cars during a small press conference this pas week.
While the outgoing Focus RS had a lot of tire-smoking power going to the front wheels, the new Focus RS will have more power and still have the power going to the front wheels. With the last model already punching almost more than 300 horses, it’s hard to imagine how much more they can push at the wrong wheels without having handling issues. However, with their special MacPherson-based suspension called the RevoKnuckle, the boffins at Ford have somehow made it work on the MkII RS.
“I think we stay with our two-wheel-drive strategy [for the new RS], which I think was well executed [for the previous version],” said Herrmann.

Speaking also of the RevoKnuckle the same sort of technology will be carried right over to the new Focus RS, which is expected to launch sometime in 2013 or 2014.
One change that could be made though with this new Focus RS is the smaller engine. Herrmann admitted himself that the 2.5L Volvo-sourced turbocharged five banger was a great engine, but due to the trend to reduce fuel consumption by using small forced induced engines, the engineers at Ford are heavily toying with getting more power out of the 2.0L turbocharged four-banger in the lower ST.
Ford however still has plenty of time to perfect the new Focus RS. And as I was saying in the intro, there’s no word of its launch here on North American soil. So it may be the same case as it was before, leaving us drooling over the better versions of cars that everyone else gets to enjoy but US. Let’s hope that will change as we get closer to the launch date
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Old 08-08-2011, 10:36 AM   #3
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I was really looking forward to a next-gen AWD RS, but if it's staying FWD that doesn't work for me unfortunately . Oh well, I'll be keeping a keen eye on the next gen STI.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:05 PM   #4
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So the UK will get an RS, and the UK ST will not get the revo knuckle front suspension. Well I hope they at least make the parts available for the RS here in the states.
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Old 08-08-2011, 12:21 PM   #5
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If we're lucky we'll have the ST by 2015 when it goes out of production in the rest of the world. Ford will take forever to release it and the car will be totally outclassed when it arrives.

Forget the RS; Ford's way too lazy/cheap to even think of getting it certified for our protected market. They can just keep teasing magazines with ST, anyway.
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Old 08-08-2011, 01:08 PM   #6
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Huh? We're getting the ST next spring.
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Old 08-08-2011, 02:09 PM   #7
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I thought the ST was coming this Fall
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Old 08-08-2011, 02:14 PM   #8
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See? exactly what I said.
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Old 08-09-2011, 12:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AVANTI R5 View Post
I thought the ST was coming this Fall
According to Ford's website:

"Meet the Focus ST*
Focus ST packs a powerful punch
High-performance 2.0L EcoBoost™ engine with class-exclusive direct fuel injection*
Unique sport suspension components
High-performance brakes
Striking new alloy wheels
Available Recaro™ leather-trimmed sport seats
Bold, sporty interior accents
*Class is Small Sedans and Hatchbacks. *Pre-production European vehicle shown. U.S. version will differ. Coming in 2012."

Link:
http://www.ford.com/cars/focus/

- brian
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Old 08-09-2011, 07:09 AM   #10
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"U.S. version will differ" I don't think that leaves any doubt that different means less. The question is what will they cut out? I'm guessing the Recaros and brakes do not make it. Revoknuckle, definitely not. The "Bold, sporty interior accents" we will most likely get though.
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Old 08-09-2011, 08:31 AM   #11
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.. or it could simply mean that they are going to have to redesign it for our crash standards? IIRC, the last RS sold in Europe for £34,000. While prices don't exactly transport over dollar-for-pound, a general American that knows nothing about Stage Rally is not going to pay Mustang GT500 money for "just a Focus" either (that is RS money, not ST money [£20,745]).

We will see when they tell us.

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Old 08-09-2011, 08:45 AM   #12
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The US will continue to get the US version. It will be 'sporty' with some minor gains here and there, but it will never be the ST the rest of the world gets.

Remember, they sell to the other 90%, where they make their profits. Not to the remaining 10% enthusiasts; meaning us.
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Old 08-09-2011, 09:21 AM   #13
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If they bring over a proper Euro RS- I would buy one in a heartbeat-
The last RS was the one of the only 2 Ford's I have ever lusted over in my entire life (the other being the GT40).
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Old 08-09-2011, 09:26 AM   #14
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Revoknuckle and torque steer is not the issue with high powered fwd cars. I can overcome torque steer with my hands but I can't dial out a loss of fwd grip when I have 300+hp breaking them loose all the time. I have a stage 2 (approx 210whp) fwd currently and it's a huge pain in the ass already in summer and requires constant feathering in winter even with snow tires.
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Old 08-09-2011, 11:19 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kukabuka View Post
"U.S. version will differ" I don't think that leaves any doubt that different means less. The question is what will they cut out? I'm guessing the Recaros and brakes do not make it. Revoknuckle, definitely not. The "Bold, sporty interior accents" we will most likely get though.
"Hi, welcome to [insert NA dealer name] Ford! Which model were you looking for today? The F-150 or the Mustang? Either can be special ordered in 37 different trim levels or in one of 78 different special limited editions!"
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Old 08-10-2011, 07:50 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dowroa View Post
According to Ford's website:

"Meet the Focus ST*
Focus ST packs a powerful punch
High-performance 2.0L EcoBoost™ engine with class-exclusive direct fuel injection*
Unique sport suspension components
High-performance brakes
Striking new alloy wheels
Available Recaro™ leather-trimmed sport seats
Bold, sporty interior accents
*Class is Small Sedans and Hatchbacks. *Pre-production European vehicle shown. U.S. version will differ. Coming in 2012."

Link:
http://www.ford.com/cars/focus/

- brian
The Mazdaspeed 3 has DI. I guess Ford marketing didn't get the memo.
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Old 08-10-2011, 02:35 PM   #17
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^Is that what that sound coming from the front of my car is .............
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Old 08-12-2011, 02:06 AM   #18
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Why do we keep getting a big fat middle finger from Ford on this car?
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:17 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by SilverSubaab View Post
^Is that what that sound coming from the front of my car is .............
Or it's just the VVT clattering
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Old 08-12-2011, 11:23 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by john_knoxville View Post
"Hi, welcome to [insert NA dealer name] Ford! Which model were you looking for today? The F-150 or the Mustang? Either can be special ordered in 37 different trim levels or in one of 78 different special limited editions!"
Yeah, because that is Ford of NA's biggest problem. All they want to focus on is the F-150 and the Mustang.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bankie View Post
The Mazdaspeed 3 has DI. I guess Ford marketing didn't get the memo.
If they don't get Port Fuel Injection aswell there is a very good chance they will have carbon buildup issues. Search for Direct injection carbon buildup. It's part of the reason why Toyota/Subaru are using the D4S system of DI and PFI.
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:27 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Allch Chcar View Post
Yeah, because that is Ford of NA's biggest problem. All they want to focus on is the F-150 and the Mustang.
I can assure you after waiting months for my 2012 GT with delays due to 5.0L engine parts shortages where the F150 got priority that the F150 is by far Ford's primary focus and will always be.
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Old 08-12-2011, 01:15 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by BlaineWasHere View Post
Why do we keep getting a big fat middle finger from Ford on this car?
Tradition. It's at least 40 years old, now.
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Old 08-12-2011, 03:53 PM   #23
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Had the new 5-door (non-RS) for a rental this week and when I would turn to look left, all I could see is B-pillar.
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Old 08-12-2011, 04:14 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by MudBoogers View Post
Had the new 5-door (non-RS) for a rental this week and when I would turn to look left, all I could see is B-pillar.
Stop sitting like a pimp.

Seriously, the ST will come. It may lose the recaros (due more to my american butt, but also a cost consideration) and get a summer only/all season no cost option. But it will keep the revoknuckle, as that's part of the architecture. And the motor is already being rolled out in the Taurus/Edge/Explorer in the US.

Now the RS, that's a long shot. I don't think a 32-35k Focus will fly in the US.
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