With the relentless teasing that Ford has done, details about the 2015 Focus RS are always welcome. So far, the car hasn’t been officially signed off but its engineers have a very clear idea of what this vehicle will be and how they intend to get it. An insider from Team RS said that at least 320bhp is needed.
What fans consider unfortunate is that this model won’t be getting the high-boost 2.5-litre five-cylinder. Engineers wanted this engine but it was far from being fuel-efficient. The fact that Volvo produces this engine is also an issue since their ties have already been severed.
What the new RS will get instead is a 2.3-litre four, with turbo, direct injection and balance shafts. This engine is scheduled to be used in the Mustang sometime in 2014 but it’s likely that a RS Focus will receive an added boost.
The engine also has to be re-engineered for the transverse mounting of the Focus. The RS may receive a tailored synthetic sound as the Ford has already developed active noise cancellation and synthesis for the approaching Mondeo.
This thrust is sent to the front wheels. It’s surprising that there is no Golf R-style 4WD but it’s true that this platform has a 4WD derivative in the form of the next Kuga. However, this is a high-riding crossover and so the 4WD system can’t be fitted under a lowered sports chassis if the floor isn’t moved.
Ford's global hot-car chief Jost Capito has been consistent in saying that 4WD adds a lot of weight to an RS. A source said that it’s probable that people won’t pay extra for it.
Performance car experts and enthusiasts around the world have long discussed the Ford Focus RS, praising the changes they have made and most of all the potential the vehicles has.
Movement was a key part of the ideas the brand was toying with when it designed the RS, said Martin Smith, Ford's European Executive Director of Design. The thrill, the speed, the power! He said that if you look at all of its designs, you will see the passion and ideas put in place when they were created.
For some like the Mondeo – they wanted something stylish, while with the Ka, they aimed for friendly. With the RS, they opted to create something dark or one that’s almost dangerous. This danger can be seen in the Ford Focus' inspiration for the RS – the cars of the World Rally Championship.
This is clearest in the adoption of the gloss-black front air intake for increased performance from the Ford team car. Due to the power contained within the new Ford Focus RS, a new approach was needed to meet its cooling and aerodynamic requirements, one which ensured it wasn't a fad or a half measure of previous designs.
The team solved the aero dynamism problems by redesigning, shaping and moulding every panel on the vehicle to reduce unnecessary drag. This has given the RS a very distinctive shape.
Closer examination reveals a much more coherent style which reflects these changes in design ambitions and creates a more harmonious environment inside the vehicle while the exterior exudes the aggressive stance Ford is going for with larger wheel arches and a frame which sits lower to the ground, a spoiler which wouldn't look out of place on their World Rally car and rocker mouldings and much larger, throatier vents.
Topping off this revision is a gloss black finish which sits alongside the chosen body colour of the vehicle.