There was no question that the 2016 Ford Focus RS was going to be quick. That was always a given. No, the question was always “how quick?”.
Now we know. With 350PS and 440Nm the turbocharged 2.3-litre Ecoboost propels the Focus to 62mph in just 4.7 seconds and on to a top speed of 165mph. That’s nearly a whole second faster than the previous fastest Focus, the RS500, and it’s a lot cheaper than that limited edition RS.
It’s hardly a surprise that this is the fastest accelerating RS model ever, that’s progress for you! What is a surprise is the price that Ford are asking for this level of performance – just £28,940.
In terms of thrills gained against hard-earned money spent there’s nothing that can touch it. It’s cheaper than a 300PS Golf R and makes the Leon Cupra, Megane Renaultsport and Astra VXR look under-endowed. What it emphatically does is stick two fingers up at the Audi RS3 and AMG A45, who tried to convince us that almost £40k was acceptable for a hot hatch. Jürgen Gagstatter, chief program engineer for Focus RS, puts it quite politely:
“The all-new Focus RS delivers stunning performance and innovative technology at a price that will make both our customers and premium automakers look twice. After experiencing the acceleration and cornering capability of the Focus RS, drivers will question the sense in spending almost £10,000 more on a premium competitor.”
So in other words, you’d have to be barking mad to spend another £10k on one of the German rivals. Unless you really, really want some of those pretty headlights.
2016 Ford Focus RS
|Performance & Economy||2016 RS||2009 RS||2010 RS500|
|Engine||2.3-litre 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol||2.5-litre 5-cylinder turbocharged petrol||2.5-litre 5-cylinder turbocharged petrol|
|Transmission||6-speed manual, front-engined, all-wheel drive||6-speed manual, front-engined, front-wheel drive||6-speed manual, front-engined, front-wheel drive|
|Power (PS / bhp)||350 / 345||300 / 295||350 / 345|
|Torque (Nm / lb.ft)||440 / 324\n(470 / 346 on overboost)||440 / 324||460 / 339|
|0 - 62 mph (seconds)||4.7||5.9||5.6|
|Top Speed (mph)||165||163||165|
|CO2 Emissions (g/km)||TBA||225||235|
|Combined Economy (mpg)||TBA||30.1||28.5|