FordFocus+EcoBoost=SportTechnology

What happens when you combine the guys responsible for the rally inspired Euro-only Ford RS machines and the Special Vehicle Team responsible for late model cars like the Cobra and Lightning? The Blue Oval’s approach to a One Ford performance machine, and what better platform to display this new Sport Technology to the world than the all new Focus ST.

Back in 2009, we had the opportunity to speak with intimately with then Ford’s President of the Americas, Mark Fields. The conversation focused on the American automaker’s future of full fuel-efficient small cars; however I was wondering about a nice white Focus RS that had been spotted sporting set of Michigan plates and the possibility of seeing more high performance hot hatches stateside. While Mr. Fields didn’t spill any cookies at the time, he did mention, “Anything is possible.” Better late than never.

“Focus ST has not come around by chance,” said Jost Capito, director of Global Performance Vehicles. “What came first was our global performance strategy, which has been developed with North America, Europe and Asia together. With this, the core DNA attributes – steering, driving dynamics, sound quality and power enhancements for all ST models – have been defined to the extent that our engineers can take that global DNA fingerprint and use it to create the new Focus ST.”

The exterior of the soon to be globally sold front wheel drive rocket ship is pumped up with an aggressive ground effects package. The bumpers come complete with super car inspired side blades in the air dams, both front and rear, the latter framing a slick center exit exhaust with an aerodynamic rear spoiler up top; all of which will be available in unique signature ST colors. While on the inside, drivers will plant their backsides into a Recaro sport seat, available in leather and/or cloth, dance on a set of specially designed racing pedals and swap cogs with a proprietary ST shifter. The car will be tuned to deliver a truly sporty experience with a high level of refinement, like all upcoming Sport Technologies vehichles.

Powering the new Ford Focus ST will be the blue oval’s answer to a greener tomorrow, a 2.0 Liter turbocharged and direct injected EcoBoost four cylinder, with twin independent variable camshaft timing (or Ti-VCT for short), mated to a six speed manual gearbox. All you need to know is that when combined, these things give you plenty of go with getting to know your local gas station attendant.

“This is the first time we have used a Ford EcoBoost engine in a high-performance model, and the result will leave drivers smiling,” said Capito. “They will have a lot of power and torque at their disposal throughout the rev range. For everyday driving, though, the characteristics of this car will let them drive in a more fuel-efficient way than previously, which is an essential part of the ST’s DNA.”

The EcoBoost badge is good for going fast in a straight line; however the ST will also be packed with other trick technology to help it go round curves. One Ford rep even mentioned something about FWD over steer, thanks to a torque steer compensator and a non-intrusive ESC with Enhanced Torque Vectoring Control. Which essentially uses the car’s electronics to control parts that are already installed on the vehicle, instead of an LSD like the old Focus RS did. While upgraded hardware will include a sport suspension that gives the Focus a unique aggressive stance and improves handling, delivering an outstanding amount of feedback to the driver through the 235 series Goodyear Eagle F1s wrapped around a set of custom 18 inch Y spokes. If this isn’t enough go fast Focus for you, Ford will be releasing a turn key racing version called the ST-R based off the already capable street car, I can’t wait to drive one!

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