• Feb 8th 2009 at 3:07PM
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Having driven the current European Focus in sporty ST trim and with the even hotter RS version rolling off the assembly line, we can tell you that our friends across the Atlantic have one fine-handling hatchback on their hands. And for the next generation, Ford is planning to give the Focus the styling and rakish profile its chassis deserves.
The next Focus, which we hope will replace the American version as well, will spawn several body-styles. First up to bat will be the C-Max minivan, but while the standard five-door will continue as the mainstay model, a new coupe variant is also in the works. Following the lead of Volkswagen, whose Scirocco cuts a sleeker profile than the Golf/Rabbit on which it's based, and Renault, whose new Megane looks startlingly different in coupe and five-door guises, the Focus coupe will feature a sportier shape while retaining usability. You can bet the design for the new Focus range will follow the cues set down by the Fiesta (which we also drove in Europe), with the coupe adopting more pronounced wheel arches, a higher beltline, angled C-pillars, a sloping tail and sporty aero bits. Inside, the cabin will benefit from a complete redesign, with a central controller that we hope works better than BMW's iDrive. Bank on a lineup of gasoline and diesel engines ranging from 89 horsepower all the way up to 197 ponies. The next-generation ST and RS should up the ante even further. Expect to see the Focus coupe debut later next year, with other variants to follow. We hope and pray Dearborn follows the One Ford plan and brings its best hatchbacks home. Thanks for the tip, Colin!

[Source: Auto Express]

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