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10 Vehicles That Prove Ford Performance Is Top Tier

Jan 24, 2015 - 5:21 AM - by ST2Focus
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James Derek Sapienza, 22 January 2015

The team to watch over the next few years may not be the Cavs, the Pats, or the Cubs after all. In fact, it may not even be a sports team at all. It might be…Ford? Like a shrewd general manager rebuilding a team, Ford has spent the last few years looking at their roster, quietly making an addition here and an upgrade there, until they suddenly have a world-class lineup that puts everybody on notice – not only GM and Chrysler, but more recently, Ferrari and Porsche too.

Much of this performance push is the result of Ford’s turbocharged and highly versatile EcoBoost engines. Ford famously introduced the three-cylinder EcoBoost engine by bringing the engine block to the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show in a carry-on bag. The ingenious engines can be tuned for either economy or performance, with the same basic inline-four engine putting out 197 horsepower in the Fiesta ST, or 310 horsepower in the Mustang EcoBoost. The same V6 block that powers the 350 horsepower Taurus SHO is also found in the mighty all-new Ford GT, putting out a whopping 600 horsepower. Proving that power is no longer necessarily linked to displacement, here are 10 reasons why Ford’s performance line-up is world class in every way.

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10. Taurus SHO

Ford’s entry into the sport sedan segment is a revival of the legendary ’90s-era Taurus SHO nameplate. The original 1989 SHO (which stands for “Super High Output”) was a $20,000 sleeper car with a suspension designed by Ford’s elite SVT performance team, and could do 0-60 in under seven seconds, and put out 220 horsepower from its Yamaha-sourced V6. While Car & Driver billed the original as “The fastest four-door sedan you can buy for less than $50,000,” the... [Read More]
  5 Replies | 3,490 Views

2015 Focus STs go head-to-head at Castle Combe: FST GTDI and FST TDI Estate

Jan 23, 2015 - 11:49 PM - by ST3 4 ME
  4 Replies | 1,442 Views

2016 Ford Focus RS Teased, World Debut Set for February 3rd

Jan 21, 2015 - 9:32 AM - by ST2Focus
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by Mircea Panait, 21st January 2015

The wait is nearly over, hot hatchback enthusiasts! An all-new Ford Focus RS is about to debut in the wonderful World Wide Web. Look forward to all-wheel drive, a 300-plus HP 2.3-liter EcoBoost and a new Nurburgring record, eventually. Yep, you’re in for a properly wild ride from FoMoCo’s skunkworks.

Titled “Preview: All-New Ford Focus RS | Reveal 3 February 2015,” the teaser video attached below is proper proof that the online unveiling will happen on February 3rd, 2015. As you can see in the opening credits, the prototype Ford Focus RS has been chuck around with the ESP and traction control system off.

Another detail the clip’s credits shares with us is that Belgium and “the USA” were the filming locations for what you’re about to see. Our high-placed insider is adamant the all-new Focus RS will get all-wheel drive, although the company itself and Dave Pericak refused any comment on the subject. Want proof that it’s the full-on all-wheel drive hooligan?

Skip to the 36-second mark at look at that tripod mode in action, wagging its tail out and lifting the rear right wheel off the tarmac. That’s normally a front-wheel drive hatch does when pushed hard in the corners, which may lead you into believing the 2016 Ford Focus RS is not an all-wheel drive car.

But that’s not quite true. Play the video again, especially the parts at the 21-second and 25-second marks. As you can see as well, those angles of tail happiness and the easiness this prototype RS can take a hairpin at full opposite lock are tell-tale signs AWD is present for extra capability at the limits of grip.

After the 2016 Ford Focus RS will debut next month, the Ford Performance division will follow its streak of high-octane madness with eight other hideously fast vehicles. But that is that and this is now, so jump over the break, press play and enjoy the 2016 Ford Focus RS extreme testing teaser video.

... [Read More]
  105 Replies | 8,343 Views

Top Gear First drive: 2015 Ford Focus ST

Jan 21, 2015 - 7:55 AM - by ST2Focus
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Stephen Dobie, 20 January 2015

Ford’s bigger hot hatch gets new looks, new diesel power and more tech, but it still majors on value. A Good Thing, then…

What's new with the ST, then?

Ford's hottest Focus (for now...) joins the rest of the hatchback line-up in getting a jolly good spruce-up. It's no mere dusting of new headlights and a sharpened grille - though these two tried-and-tested modifications do give it an uncanny resemblance to the dinkier Fiesta ST - rather a more thorough fine-tuning of its whole character.

What are the headlines?

Big news comes in the form of a new engine. The 247bhp 2-litre petrol turbo unit continues service, albeit with some mild software tweaks, but sitting alongside it is now a 182bhp 2-litre turbodiesel option. And no, it's not called the STD. Both drive the front wheels rather frenetically through a six-speed manual gearbox.

Elsewhere, the chassis has had some attention, with stiffened suspension, while both the torque vectoring system and the electric power steering have received a retune. Detail evolutions rather than revolutions, but the end result is a car that feels much sharper than before.

It's good to drive then?

Oh yes. It was pretty good in the first place, twinning keen, agile dynamics with a firm yet compliant ride. There's more of the same here: the steering feels more focused, with satisfying levels of weight for an electronic system, endowing it with an intuitiveness that should rarely see you having to adjust how much lock you've applied.

The ride, meanwhile, feels a tad firmer than before, but purposefully so. Given how well maintained our Spanish test roads appeared to be, however, full judgement is reserved for when we try the ST on the UK's more pock-marked tarmac.

Shorn of a proper differential, the front axle can feel overwhelmed by the ST's torque out of corners, though the solution might sound counterintuitive. Turn the ESP into its slacker Sport mode and the traction control's tight grasp is loosened, allowing the tyres to dig in... [Read More]
  4 Replies | 3,531 Views

New Rendering just out: 2016 Ford Focus RS

Jan 07, 2015 - 8:04 AM - by ST2Focus
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by Ciprian Florea, Posted on 6 January 2015

The Focus RS saga began in late 2002 when the first-generation model was launched and Ford revived the RS badge after six years. Powered by a turbocharged, 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine, the RS MkI churned 212 horsepower, making it the closest road-going hatch to the WRC car. Discontinued in 2003, the RS returned six year later, this time with a 305-horsepower, 2.5-liter, five-cylinder under its hood. With a facelifted, third-generation Focus now in showrooms, Ford is introducing a brand-new RS in 2015, one that’s expected to take the nameplate’s credentials even further. What’s more, Ford will offer the Focus RS in the U.S. for the first time in 2015.

We say "expected" because the official details have yet to arrive, but rumors hint that the new RS will crank out around 330 ponies from a 2.3-liter EcoBoost sourced from the 2015 Mustang. Exciting doesn’t even begin to cover it, but there’s more good news coming from the grapevine, including the fact that all that oomph might be traveling to all four wheels thanks to an AWD system. Read on for all the juicy details surrounding the 2016 Focus RS.

Updated 01/05/2014: Based on the recent spy shots, we created a rendering for the new Focus RS, which is rumored to be unveiled next week at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show.

2016 Ford Focus RS | car review @ Top Speed

The second rendering info:

A new rendering is showing us how the upcoming 2016 Ford Focus RS might look like once it will become available.

The new generation of the Ford Focus RS range topping hot hatch is just around the corner and with the car company getting ready to officially pull the... [Read More]
  109 Replies | 12,542 Views

The December 2014 Focus ST of the Month Contest Winner is Adamnclump!

Dec 31, 2014 - 1:17 PM - by wicked

The December 2014 (Holiday Edition) Focus ST of the Month Contest winner is none other than Adamnclump with this great shot! Congratulations!

Thanks to everyone who participated and submitted an photo and to all those who voted! We'll do this again in a couple of weeks so stay tuned!

Happy New Year!
  6 Replies | 989 Views

Ford files trademark for 'EcoBeast' moniker (What's Ford got planned?)

Dec 30, 2014 - 6:55 AM - by ST2Focus
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By Brandon Turkus, 29 December 2014

Ford has done some performance stuff with its EcoBoost line of vehicles, most notably with its Focus and Fiesta ST, the new, turbocharged Mustang and the luke-warm Taurus SHO and F-150 Tremor, but it's kind of avoided going wholly bonkers. That could be set to change quite soon, judging by a trademark filing with Uncle Sam.

Ford has registered the name EcoBeast with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, listing it as "automobiles and automobile engines," according to the team at Motorlix, which discovered the filing.

As always, it bears mentioning that companies are constantly filing trademarks, even if a good or service never emerges with said name. We agree with Motorlix, though – it seems highly unlikely Ford is going to just let this name languish. What vehicle or engine will wear this new badge is the real question. We're leaning towards something F-150 related, based on our last round of spy photos of the new SVT Raptor, although it's impossible to say for certain what the Blue Oval has planned.

Here's hoping we find out in just a few weeks when Ford brings basically all of its performance merchandise to the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Until then, let us know what you think Ford is planning with the EcoBeast.

Ford files trademark for 'EcoBeast' moniker
  26 Replies | 2,902 Views

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