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COBB Ford Focus ST from Car and Driver

Jul 29, 2013 - 4:54 AM - by ST2Focus
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From the August 2013 Issue of Car and Driver

TESTEDFans of the original ’roided-out Honda Civics that launched the tuner craze and made Vin Diesel’s career may have aged, but Ford’s new turbocharged Focus ST proves there’s still some energy left in the traditional sport-compact scene and the aftermarket that feeds off it.

Cobb Tuning of Austin, Texas, is no stranger to small, turbocharged hot rods, with ample experience tweaking fast Mitsubishis, Nissans, and Subarus. Ford’s little head case was a natural for Cobb’s brand of brain surgery, and the black example you see here shows what’s possible when about 10 grand—more than half of which buys some expensive wheels and tires—is heaped on top of the ST’s $27,775 base price.

Not that the 10Best-winning Focus ST needs much help. It only recently surrendered its short-lived comparison-test crown to the seventh-gen Volkswagen GTI, and it remains a torque-steering, tail-wagging hoon of an everyday hatch. But if the stock ST is immature by design, the folks at Cobb have made it a candidate for juvie.

Aided in development by rallyist, X Games gold medalist, and TV personality Tanner Foust, the Cobb ST sports a smattering of bolt-on engine and chassis bits that accentuate the base car’s best features without totally ruining its drivability. Cobb will offer a limited run of turnkey, Foust-edition STs mechanically similar to this one later this year; given Foust’s considerable drifting accomplishments, we’re a little surprised a rear-drive conversion isn’t included.

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While the ST’s 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine... [Read More]
  18 Replies | 2,747 Views

Ford ST taken for blast in Dubai

Jul 28, 2013 - 8:19 AM - by ST2Focus
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By Dejan Jovanovic

Published: 16:04 July 28, 2013

The Blue Ovalís hot new 2013 Focus ST comes with 252 horsepower, loads of torque, a raucous exhaust note, and a six-speed manual transmission. Not the most popular feature in our region, but times could be changing...

There is a fervent resurgence of manual transmissions taking place in our region at the moment. And by fervent resurgence I mean you are able to buy maybe three of four cars with a manual gearbox.

Hey, always take whatever you can getÖ

One is the Toyota 86, obviously, although lately Iíve been seeing too many with the bigger wheels and kitschy plastic aero-aids on the C-pillar ó dead giveaways for top-spec cars, and therefore automatic gearboxes. We try to stay away from them in public. Iíve heard that automatics can be contagious.

Then thereís the Opel Corsa OPC, which isnít even on sale yet, but will be very shortly for Dh83K. And finally, Skoda will be releasing a hot 220bhp Octavia RS later this year, priced a little over Dh100K.

The new 2013 Ford Focus ST, too, comes exclusively with a six-speed manual transmission, but donít let that deter you in any way if youíre more inclined to automatics.

Whatís a torque converter? In the ST, thatíll be the differential. Double-clutch? Yes, itís got one of those too; just dip the leftmost pedal twice on every gear change, if you like. See? Itís all things to all men.

The Focus ST has an automatic gearbox in other less sarcastic ways too. For example, when youíre in sixth you can just leave it there for all overtaking manueuvres, because 366Nm of torque from 2,500rpm is plenty. On your way rowing gears through the H-gate you have the optional use of a U-gate (free of charge); that means shifting in a first-third-fifth pattern because 366Nm ofÖ Oh Iíve said that already. Thereís lots of torque.

You know when you look at local classified ads online for hours at work, as you do, and you see a 1991 Nissan Cedric and itís advertised as fully automatic? As opposed to what; two gears... [Read More]
  5 Replies | 777 Views

Top Gear First drive: Ford Focus ST Mountune

Jul 26, 2013 - 7:09 AM - by ST2Focus
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Our hot hatch of the year gets a 24bhp and 30lb ft boost for £1275. Is it worth it?

Posted by: Matthew Jones, 26 July 2013

What's this, then?

A Focus ST estate with a special £1275 Mountune pack that increases the turbo'd four cylinder's power from 247bhp to 271bhp and 265lb ft to 295lb ft. Because it's been given the nod by blue oval bosses, you keep your original warranty, too.

Huh. So what does that £1275 include?

There's a bigger intercooler, what Ford calls Ďunique engine calibration' (a custom ECU map), high-flow air filter and snazzy cast powder-coated alloy housing (it's £1225 if you get a silver one). Oh, and a little yellow badge on the boot.

You liked the Focus ST estate, didn't you?

Yes we did. Top Gear magazine crowned it 2012's Hot Hatch of the Year, then drove it around Russia for a bit.

So, has Mountune ruined it?

Quite the opposite. We're going to have to wait for a while for the unhinged RS - but in the meantime this is the fastest new Focus you can buy. And it's not fast in a constantly insane, exhausting sort of way - like the normal ST, there are two very different, very good cars conjoined in the Mountune wagon.

Conjoined, eh? Continue...

There's the estate car. The justice of the peace. It's inconspicuous. It rides impeccably. It'll reconcile with wives and the real world, happily swallowing shopping (it keeps the normal car's 476-litre boot capacity), offspring, and at 39.2mpg, (the same as the ST) not too much petrol.

Then there's the Mountune. The reckless brother that'll get from 0-62mph in less than six seconds (faster than a Ferrari 308 GTB, fact fans) and top out at 154mph. This guy's only ever a down-shift away.

But surely that extra power's made it torque steer more?

Well, yes. The 30lb ft boost and absence of any clever RevoKnuckle tech means torque steer is a bit more aggressive, especially lower down the rev range. But the compensating virtue is... [Read More]
  10 Replies | 1,760 Views

Ford Focus ST-3 estate: PistonHeads fleet

Jul 25, 2013 - 6:16 AM - by ST2Focus
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Tuesday 23rd July

Navigational disputes aside it's domestic bliss in the Focus still

Look, can we get over the price thing please. Yes, it's a Focus with a - nominal - £30K ticket. But, as the less hysterical responses to previous updates on our fleet ST have noted, this is a bottom line figure on an official rrp for a fully loaded press car.

Funny that the outrage at a Focus with a pricetag (almost) starting with a three on it is considerably more visceral than it is the idea of the '£30K' M135i costing closer to £40K or Porsche 911 Carrera quietly knocking on the door of six figures OTR without too much persuasion from the salesman. A pity also this tedious brand snobbery seems too often to cloud debate over the exemplary fitness for purpose of the product itself. And, yes, having lived with it I'm unashamedly partisan.

And having said I wanted to set the pricing debate on one side I've probably just reignited it. Ho hum!

To the car itself though and a couple of niggles first, reported from the driver's seat by Mrs Trent. First up the sat-nav, whose tiny screen and apparent lack of a 'proper' north-up plan view are minor irritations to its occasional total loss of position. It seemed to have lost signal - not for the first time - and then 'lost' us too, hence bonkers instructions like 'turn right' when joining motorways or 'make a U-turn' half way down the M1. But once your faith in a navigation system is shattered it's next to useless.

So there we go, we've saved you £750 off the price of your ST by not speccing nav. Damn, there I go talking about price again!

And while we're moaning the 'evens' only speedo is a pain too; OK, it's not that hard to fill in the gaps but given 30, 50 and 70 are numbers you really need to keep tabs on in UK driving it can be frustrating.

In all other respects the Focus continues to impress and dazzle with its all-round ability and seamless combination of fun and practicality. It's just such a pleasing balance and the fact that, as collection date looms, I'm facing... [Read More]
  9 Replies | 1,180 Views

July 2013 Focus ST of the Month Voting

Jul 23, 2013 - 2:16 PM - by wicked

Let the voting begin for the July 2013 ST of the Month! We will leave the poll open for 5 days and then announce the winner on the front page on the 28th. We have a lot of entries this month and they're all great! Thanks to everyone that participated and GOOD LUCK!!!
  18 Replies | 1,240 Views

Life in the Foust Lane - EP 201 - Switching Gears

Jul 23, 2013 - 10:25 AM - by STdan

Life in the Foust Lane" is back for a second season! This time around, Tanner continues to crush the boundaries of what is possible on four wheels. Viewers will get a closer look at what fuels this world class driver, on and off the track.

Season Premieres July 11, 2013 only at Youtube.com/Rockstar!
  1 Reply | 906 Views

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