Ford Performance Drift Stick handbrake announced for Ford Focus RS | CAR Magazine

Magic wand: Ford Performance Drift Stick is here to make handbrake turns easy

Published: 02 November 2017 Updated: 03 November 2017

► Rally-style quick-lock handbrake
► Official add-on for Ford Focus RS
► But only in US and Canada. Boo

Behold the world’s first electronically controlled performance handbrake – the saviour of the increasingly endangered handbrake turn.

It was initially known as – stop smirking – Project Wicked Stick, and fulfils the same purpose as a proper rally-spec hydraulic handbrake, without any of the associated bother.

The Ford Performance Drift Stick (as it is officially known) allows Focus RS drivers to achieve even larger angles of oversteer and is approved by slidemeister Ken Block himself.

It was on display at the 2017 SEMA event – click here for a full run-down from the show

What does this wicked drift Ken Block stick thing do?

Instantly lock up the rear wheels with the flick of a handle, rather than having to yank on a manual lever like you used to do in a car park when you were 18.

Ford Performance Drift Stick

Rally cars use a hydraulic handbrake to achieve the same effect, helping rotate the back end of the car around a tight bend in a forest in South Wales or wherever.

Why not just offer a hydraulic handbrake then?

Because that would require substantial modification to the car that then couldn’t be easily reversed when it comes to resale.

Plus the Drift Stick’s aluminium lever requires only six pounds of pressure to engage – much less than a hydraulic version.

Ford Focus RS drift

Ford’s system uses electronics to open up the rear-drive unit’s clutches, applying hydraulic pressure to lock the rear wheels and induce a drift.

Where can I get one?

Sadly it’s currently only available in the US and Canada, costing $999, but it does at least leave your warranty intact.

It can be installed and removed easily due to the fact there is no welding, hole-drilling or additional caliper installation like with a hydraulic kit.

Finally it’s worth noting that, as with most fun car modifications, the Drift Stick is officially intended for track use only – not for flamboyant supermarket parking manoeuvres. 

Tested: Ford Focus RS Mountune M400 

By Adam Binnie

Bauer Automotive's commercial content editor; likes bikes and burgers, often over-tyred