Ford Aiming For ‘Ring Record

Ford are planning to take the new Focus RS to the Nurburgring to try and grab the hot hatch lap record, having being beaten to the punch by Renault and the Megane R26.R last year.

2009 Ford Focus RS

The Focus RS was spotted at an industry pool day last week, an event where manufacturers share time on the ‘Ring testing their prototypes. The belief is that Ford were setting the car up for an attempt at the hot hatch record, and are hoping to set a Nordschleife lap time of around 8:15. The attempt is expected to be made at the next industry pool session starting on March 31st.

The record currently stands at 8:16.9, set by the lightweight Megane R26.R on a set of semi-slick Toyo Proxes R888 tyres. Ford are considering attempting their record-beating lap on the Focus’ standard Continental tyres, but if they can get close enough to the Megane’s time they may well switch to Toyo Cup tyres (worth around 3 seconds per lap) and add them onto the options list for customer cars.

“It’s no secret that we will be looking to achieve a time at the ’Ring, but there’s no set schedule for it. We didn’t get any opportunities before Christmas because the car’s production set-up wasn’t confirmed and the weather was against us. But we can work on it now.” Ford Spokesman

So is there any point to all of this? Not really, a quick time around the Nurburgring bears very little resemblance to a fast blat down a poorly surfaced country road. But if Ford do grab the record you can expect the marketing men will start to get very excited indeed.

Source: Autocar, Auto Mobiles


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Author: Chris Auty

Voted the Breakthrough Blogger of 2013 by SEAT and the Guild of Motoring Writers , Chris has lived and breathed cars since he was old enough to say 'faster'. With a penchant for hot hatches and an allergy to public transport, he would much prefer to drive a bad car than never drive at all. Fortunately his family has learned to put up with this obsession and the internet has provided a channel for his ramblings.

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