The Focus RS has been deemed for years as one of the most desirable hot hatches on the market, but so far certain regions – including the home of Ford – were out of reach for the model.
The 2016 Ford Focus RS finally put an end to the issue, making its debut as a global car and also paying a visit to its upcoming new market during the New York auto show – a small volume model indeed, but one that has the potential to further beef up the sporty image of the blue oval at home and abroad. The European performance car had American fans for years wondering when they would get the chance to buy it – and last year’s decision to pool all the regional performance units into a single division finally meant the dream was coming true. The new Focus RS will reach US showrooms sometimes in the spring of next year, according to Joe Hinrichs, Ford president of the Americas. Naturally, produced in Saarlouis, Germany, the European customers will get to own the car a while before. US pricing is yet to be determined and Omar Odeh, RS marketing manager, added that final performance figures are also due out later on this year.
The five-door hatchback has under the hood a tuned version of the 2.3-liter turbocharged EcoBoost four-cylinder engine (also found beting in the 50-year old, global Mustang), delivering more than 315 horsepower. It will compete on the US market with equally hot offerings such as the Subaru WRX STi, Volkswagen Golf R and Mitsubishi Evo. Going head to head will not be a problem, as the model finally moved from front-wheel drive to all-wheel drive technology. The system can go as far as delivering 100 percent of power to one of its rear wheels and the control system can even be placed into “drift mode” – which shuts down electronic stability control modifies the suspension and other systems in the drivetrain.