Desire for Ford Focus RS is strong, says Ford boss
Ford is keen to make the third generation Ford Focus RS happen and if they do go ahead, the vehicle could feature a 350 brake horse power 2.3 litre EcoBoost engine.
Is a third generation Ford Focus RS a possibility?
According to Barb Samardzich, chief operating officer for Ford of Europe, a new model may be in the development phase. She commented, “I can’t give you any confirmation today, but let’s say there’s a strong desire. Something like that makes a great halo car.”
A Ford spokesperson backed up the comment, stating, “We have a rich heritage of RS cars and we’re not about to let any competitors overtake us in that respect. You can rest assured that Martin [Smith, director of design, Ford of Europe] and his team are fully focused on the future of our performance strategy.”
A refreshed Focus ST is scheduled to go on sale this summer, but while the styling is expected to be more extreme than the current model, there won’t be any power boosts for its 247bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, leaving room for a more potent RS model above it.
Will the new Ford Focus RS feature a 2.3 litre EcoBoost?
The most likely engine to feature in a new RS is a new 2.3 litre four cylinder turbocharged EcoBoost unit, developed for the entry level version of the new Mustang. While it will produce 304 brake horse power in the Mustang, it could be tuned to around 350 brake horse power for the Focus RS.
To save weight and keep the price as close to £25,000 as possible, the new RS will likely stick to a front wheel drive layout and employ an electronic differential to maximise traction in all conditions. Whether the model will be offered with a six speed manual gearbox only, is still a subject of internal debate.
Whichever mechanical package Ford decides to go with, the Focus RS won't appear in showrooms anytime soon as the current car is not due for replacement until 2017. A new Focus RS will battle it out with leading hot hatch models like the Volkswagen Golf R, Vauxhall's Astra VXR Extreme and BMW's 135i M Sport.