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2016 Ford Focus ST
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2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings fellow St'rs,

Over the years I have found car forums to be a valuable resource for information.... beyond the trashing and flaming that typically goes on.

Background:
I have spent the past 17 years driving three different 05 Ford Mustang GT's.
They were all a combination of daily driver and high performance driving school track cars. (Virginia International Raceway) The last Mustang I drove for almost 10 years. Built the engine myself, and with a Roush stage 2 supercharger I was able to put down nearly 550 RWHP. The entire suspension had been replaced with race components. The doors and fenders were about the only things stock by the time I was finished modifying it.
However, about a year and a half ago I was diagnosed with an inflammation disease. I was unable to get in and out of the Mustang, much less drive it or work on it. It sat for a year and I sold it. Recently I have been responding to a new treatment and feel well enough to get behind the wheel of a track car again. (Spring 2023) While the high HP Mustangs have been a lot of fun... I have frequently used the additional HP of the Mustang to make up for my less than great skills through the corners. It is time I learn to drive and enjoy the twisties on the track. Being a Ford man... the Focus ST was the best and most affordable choice. I've been daily driving a 04 Mazda 3.... so at least I have "some" experience with front wheel drive cars. But not on-track.

Current:
This month I purchased a 2016 Ford Focus ST (base) from a local mom & pop car lot.
Not my first choice to buy a car... but it has low miles at 75K and some basic mods that I would have otherwise done to the car myself. The car came with an Injen CAI, and a custom exhaust system from the manifold back. A Cobb lower motor mount. And a really loud blow-off valve. (At 57 years old, I'm still the cool kid on the block)
Not confident my purchase was sound, I have had 5 techs from two different Ford dealerships go over the car to ensure it is in good shape. The drive-line "clunk" on certain shifts and a few other things really had me worried. Other than the battery, intake tube and a few other things improperly secured/loose.... they found nothing wrong with the car.

Sooooo now I need to start getting it track ready.
I'm still in a delicate condition, so the suspension needs to stay soft.
A Cobb tuner is a must. Not looking to make huge HP gains. I need to learn how to drive it first. So no intercooler changes... yet. I have the Cobb short throw shifter in my hands ready to install. It really needs this!
I'd like a better and more FUNCTIONAL wing on the rear. Not too expensive. Any suggestions?
I typically run Carbotech XP-10 brake pads with stainless lines. But being a more momentum type of track car, I dont anticipate a lot of hard braking. And the current calipers and pads appear brand new. The car has amazing brakes.
This is the first car I am considering a dedicated set of track tires for. But the current Michelin PS4 All Seasons will have to do for now. It is after all my daily driver.

I look forward to learning more about the car and how to drive it.
So far it has been a lot of fun.
 

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Super Moderator
2014 ST3. Garrett GTX2860R Gen 2. FBO
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Welcome aboard and glad to hear you're on the mend!

You absolutely need an intercooler for the track. My opinion is DO NOT tune these cars without an intercooler. Also do NOT run the Cobb supplied tunes. Buy the accessport and load a custom tune or the monster adapt x tune.

These engines are fragile and it's just as easy if not easier to break a piston ringland with the stock turbo as it is with a big turbo and 400whp.

Definitely do some searching here. Read the stickies, etc. Look up LSPi and learn how to avoid it.

Good luck with the car and stick around! Lots of guys here that run autocross and open track events with their STs.
 

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2013 Ford Focus ST
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1,074 Posts
Welcome, and I second the intercooler upgrade. Even on a stock car it will allow you to drive it like you want too with out any hiccups. Definitely take time to read all the stickies, some priceless info here!
 
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2017 Ford Focus ST3 - Kona Blue
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5 Posts
Welcome! Glad your health is getting better. I love talking to people after they've had a chance to drive these cars for the first time, especially track-time. It's almost always a unanimous response that "They are just so much fun to drive!" It's just a great balance of car weight, HP and the feel that 6-speed manual gives! There will be plenty of guys like the posts above covering IC upgrades and tunes and I agree, its good advice.

My two cents... if you are doing tire swaps on the regular, one of the things I've grown to appreciate tremendously are the Steeda chassis jacking rails. They allow you to jack up your focus anywhere along the jacking rail and one jack in the middle puts that whole side up. Game changer. I love CJponyparts.com
 

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Welcome! Intercooler! Get one! I will second the jacking rails since I have to change tires every fall and spring. I'd also recommend hood struts as an easy mod that makes not dealing with the prop rod a joy underhood.This is a great resource for practically anything you want to do with the car and great people overall.

ETA: Hoot struts are for owls, hood struts are for cars.
 

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538 Posts
Welcome aboard! As stated above, the OEM intercooler is garbage and should never have been installed on this car. Many track build threads here to help you with ideas.
 

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2016 Ford Focus ST
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2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Welcome aboard and glad to hear you're on the mend!

You absolutely need an intercooler for the track. My opinion is DO NOT tune these cars without an intercooler. Also do NOT run the Cobb supplied tunes. Buy the accessport and load a custom tune or the monster adapt x tune.

These engines are fragile and it's just as easy if not easier to break a piston ringland with the stock turbo as it is with a big turbo and 400whp.

Definitely do some searching here. Read the stickies, etc. Look up LSPi and learn how to avoid it.

Good luck with the car and stick around! Lots of guys here that run autocross and open track events with their STs.
So I had the car up on a lift today.
Knowing the dimensions of the stock intercooler.... it is clear my car does NOT have a stock intercooler.
The core on mine is closer to 29 inches wide, by about 7 1/2 inches tall. Solid aluminum construction.
Without removing the front bumper cover, it is going to be difficult to tell who makes it.
Also noted the front grill vent system has been removed.

My Cobb tuner is on the way. Should be here Friday.
Any particular reason you dislike the Cobb maps?
I have a nasty loud blow-off valve. Anything I should be concerned about?

I looked up the LSPi.... did my first oil change with a synthetic Pennzoil product. Cant recall which but it was on this site per the LSPi recommendations.

I took photos of most of what I think are aftermarket parts.
Hope to do some research to know what they are.
 

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2014 ST3. Garrett GTX2860R Gen 2. FBO
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8,868 Posts
Post the pictures up here, we might be able to identify some or all.

The short of it is Cobb maps are aggressive and sloppy. It's been talked about in numerous tuning threads around here so do some searching and reading for key details. I'm just trying to save you an engine.

Either purchase a pro tune that you will go out and do datalogs for (I use Alan at Edge Auto sport) or if you want the safest purchase-and-load tune, the Adapt-x.

Some tuners are more aggressive than others. So definitely dig around the forums and do some research. There's so much good info here, spend some time and dig, you'll answer any questions you may want detailed info on
 

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2016 ST2, Shadow Black, E30, MonsterFMIC, GFB DVX+ BPV, ALEX' ShiftBushings, PCV-OCC, Innovative RMM
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3,385 Posts
I like the Stratified linear throttle with traction control on. Much better than Cobb aggressive throttle of the OTS maps.

I have not tried the Adaptx.
Mainly because I didn't want stock throttle mapping until you are closer to full throttle, and I wanted map switching to go between 91, 93, E30, low boost, and valet tunes without having to reflash.
Not as safe as Adaptx that carries more safety like the stock tune and can adjust to mods, but i don't care.
 

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2018 ST1 Magnetic Gray
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1,350 Posts
Welcome, don’t rushed, get better first. If you are planning eventually to track the car, stock brakes are not up to the task, specially in a track like VIR. The RS front and rear brakes (Frankenstein brakes) are a better choice. An oil cooler will help you to stay away from limp mode. An aftermarket springs with koni shocks or Bilstein kit could be a good start without making the ride too stiff.
 
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