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Yesterday's Focus ST500 special edition is cool and all, but what most Focus fans overseas are looking forward to is the next ST. Well, the wait's over thanks to the UK's Auto Express. The mag has pulled the cover off of the updated hot hatch, which incorporates all the latest Ford of Europe design cues. The headlights are very Mondeo, and that gaping lower intake shows us that the maw on the Verve concept was not some show car exaggeration. It's a styling element that's now officially been used on a production vehicle. Around back, the hatch is updated and the rear bumper has a diffuser insert.

As before, 3- and 5-door models will be offered, and the new car's powertrain also remains unchanged. It packs the same 2.5L 222-horsepower turbo five-cylinder underhood as the outgoing car, and it even keeps the same pricing scheme. The three-door ranges from £17,995 for the ST to £19,995 for the loaded-up ST-3. Five-door versions add another £600 to the bottom line. The updated Focus ST goes on sale in March 2008. While our pals across the pond get this toy to play with, we're stuck with the new car whose front end looks like it's made of Duplo blocks. But it has Sync, so rejoice.

[Source: Auto Express]

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