Ford’s blazing Focus RS coming to America in 2016 after all?


American car buyers were thrilled when Ford announced its GTI-fighting Focus ST in 2010, and it’s easy to see why.

It’s powered by a 252-horsepower turbo four-cylinder, with aggressive, enthusiastic styling, and carrying a reasonable $24,155 price tag. Europeans had been romping about in “hot hatches” for years, so when Ford brought another one here, it went over pretty well.

But if you give a mouse a cookie … he’s going to want 350 horsepower and an electronic differential. Or something like that.

According to an Autoexpress report, Ford has plans to release the even-hotter Focus RS to U.S. markets in 2016, which could be given a 350-hp version of the 2.3-liter EcoBoost from the new Mustang.

Barb Samardzich, Chief Operating Officer for Ford of Europe, couldn’t confirm any details, but expressed that there is a “strong desire” for the Focus RS in America.

Another Ford spokesman said, “We have a rich heritage of RS cars, and we’re not about to let any competitors overtake us in that respect. You can rest assured that Martin (Smith, Ford of Europe director of design) and his team are fully focused on the future of our performance strategy.”

An immediate concern for any front-wheel-drive car with that much power is torque steer, but Ford has plans to counteract that. An electronic front differential will deliver all 350 horses to the pavement, maximizing traction in all conditions.

Ford’s crafty RevoKnuckle suspension design, itself a variation of the MacPherson layout, presumably uses some sort of witchcraft and magic to reduce steering feedback. It also weighs and costs less than your typical double wishbone setup, further improving the performance of the Focus RS.

Ford is reportedly looking to keep the base price of the RS around £27,000, emphasizing the strong value of the Focus brand.

Given the popularity of hot hatches in Europe, it’s hard to imagine why an insanely high-powered RS wouldn’t sell in the States. The power of a Mustang and the practicality of a Focus? Sign me up. 


Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe wants his startup to be the Patagonia of electric cars

Rivian is the latest startup hyping new electric cars. But unlike most other startups, Rivian is focusing on off-road vehicles. It launched an electric pickup truck and SUV at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show. CEO R.J. Scaringe explains the…
Product Review

It's not the sharpest tool, but the Surface Go does it all for $400

Microsoft has launched the $400 Surface Go to take on both the iPad and Chromebooks, all without compromising its core focus on productivity. Does it work as both a tablet and a PC?
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to endangered cats

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.

Ford’s new Shelby GT500 Mustang will have 3D-printed brake parts

Ford's new $45 million Advanced Manufacturing Center will focus on emerging technologies, including 3D printing. One of the staff's first jobs is to print parts for the 700-horsepower Shelby GT500 Mustang.
Smart Home

Is old-school Airstream finally embracing smart home technology?

Airstream's vintage-looking trailers have a huge audience but its 2019 Classic camping trailers are getting a modern upgrade with the addition of app-controlled smart home technology to bring modern convenience online.

Did that car just wink at you? Daimler previews car-to-pedestrian signals

Eager to show off progress with autonomous cars and perhaps do some consumer softening as well, Daimler and Bosch previewed car-to-pedestrian communications. A sensor-loaded Mercedes S appears to wink to acknowledge a pedestrian's presence.

Uber is about to restart self-driving car tests but on a reduced scale

Uber is reported to be on the verge of restarting its autonomous-car test program. The company halted it in March 2018 following a fatal accident involving one of its vehicles, but its cars could be back on the road within weeks.

Bosch is developing a Rosetta Stone for autonomous and connected cars

Bosch and start-up Veniam want to create a common language that autonomous and connected cars can use. The two firms have developed a connectivity unit that transcends the national boundaries of technology.

Aston Martin bets classic car owners will choose volts over carburetors

Aston Martin has converted one of its most sought-after classic models to run on electricity instead of gasoline. The roadster uses electric components sourced from the upcoming Rapide E sedan.

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.

600-hp, $155K Polestar 1 is the alluring Volvo coupe you’ve been waiting for

Volvo's return to the coupe segment just took an interesting turn: the model will join the Polestar lineup, and it will get a 600-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Polestar 1 will be built in China starting in 2019.

The Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake is the sexiest wagon ever

Aston Martin has revealed new photos of the limited-production Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake. The Vanquish Zagato line now includes the Shooting Brake, Coupe, Volante, and Speedster, each with bespoke styling.

Nissan and Italdesign’s GT-R50 concept will become a $1.1 million reality

The Nissan GT-R50 is a customized sports car built to celebrate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and design firm Italdesign. Underneath the sleek bodywork sits a 710-horsepower engine fortified with race car components.
Product Review

Audi built an electric SUV for buyers who want gasoline-free to mean stress-free

We finally got to spend time behind the wheel of the electric 2019 Audi E-Tron bustling cities and arid desert of the United Arab Emirates to see how it compares with Jaguar and Tesla's competitors.