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Ford Focus RS (2008)
29 June 2007 09:33
What's going on here then? New hubcaps for the Focus?
How droll. No, what you are looking at is the first spy shot of the new Focus RS. Yes, the car they said they wouldn't do is back on track, so to speak. Caught after a few sneaky laps of the Nürburgring this week, this black mule hides the next generation RS. It's early days yet. First, Ford is expected to unveil an RS concept at the Geneva motor show, alongside a refreshed and facelifted Focus. Then expect the real thing to arrive this time next year. It'll be worth the wait, through. Although Ford suits deny the very existence of the car, our sources claim the hot RS will be powered by a heavily revised version of the blown 2.5-litre five-pot in the current ST, running through a close-ratio six-speed 'box to a Volvo-sourced all-wheel drive system. Which means none of the wayward handling characteristics of the previous RS. Thank goodness. Click next for more details on the hottest Focus yet...
So what's all that gubbins on the wheels?
Those are advanced electronic load-monitors. Attached to the wheels and front suspension, they store data on the car's ride and handling characteristics according to both the road conditions and the weight of the engine. Ford's engineers are having to go back to scratch to rework the car's underpinnings because of the four-wheel drive layout, tweaked steering, uprated suspension and heavily overhauled engine. The 2522cc engine gets fitted with new variable intake and exhaust manifolds, an uprated turbocharger with larger intercooler and oil cooler and reinforced con-rods to deliver a searing 300bhp and an anticipated 280lb ft of torque for monster in-gear acceleration. It's enough muscle to rocket the RS to 60mph in five seconds dead and onto a 165mph top speed. The engine's electronic management system will also be recalibrated for scalpel-sharp throttle responses.