Engines keep getting smaller, but that doesn't mean they're getting weaker. Case in point: Ford, which is developing a new 2.3-liter four with turbocharging and direct injection. It's rumored to go into the Mustang in a couple of years, but sources from across the pond (read: Hot Hatch country) expect it to power the next Focus RS.

The engine would crank out at least 320 horsepower, and replace the 2.5-liter inline-five that Ford borrowed from Volvo (from which it has since divested) for the previous Focus RS. If you're worried that a turbo four would lack the roar of the previous five, Ford is reportedly preparing to equip the new Focus RS with active noise cancellation and pipe in sound to replace it.

Ford is reportedly ruling out the all-wheel drive you'd expect from other hot hatches like the Subaru WRX or Volkswagen Golf R, due to high weight and cost, in favor of the RevoKnuckle torque-steer compensation system found in the previous Focus RS, and similar to the systems used in the Renaultsport Megane and Vauxhall Astra VXR.

Since the new Focus has yet to appear in any form other than four-door sedan, five-door wagon or five-door hatch, Top Gear expects the new Focus RS to pack five doors where the previous model had three.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 80 Comments
      Kiadaw
      • 2 Years Ago
      AWD is the one feature most people asked for & yet the one feature Ford insist of NOT putting in the RS. Ford will surely not get my money. I am sure the RS is good, but it can be much more, but ast least Audi still have AWD in their S & RS models ( at unforunately also increase price tag).
        jtav2002
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Kiadaw
        Makes you wonder why they can't just bring one car here that isn't castrated. If the vehicle isn't equipped with AWD in any market, fine, but when there is a version somewhere and we don't get it, kind of sucks. Just look at the Regal GS. That car looks great IMO, however only offers normal performance despite it being the "performance" version. They should have just brought the Insignia OPC over untouched with the turbo 6 and AWD.
          AcidTonic
          • 2 Years Ago
          @jtav2002
          Lack of sales will be further "proof" that Americans don't like "hot hatches". In reality Americans don't like crippled hot hatches. Give us AWD.
      John Ward
      • 2 Years Ago
      Why do we have to get the fwd, 5 door version? I want AWD and would prefer the 3 door. It better be MUCH cheaper than an EVO or WRX if it isn't packing AWD.
      Hazdaz
      • 2 Years Ago
      Without AWD, I think Ford is really missing a big opportunity to make this Focus RS a serious contender against the likes of the Subaru STi. Then again, the STi goes for over $30k, so as long as this RS is well below that number, then it could be a smart move. But I don't know if Ford will be able to hold the price down that much - a Titanium Edition Focus starts at $22k. The ST I believe hasn't been priced out yet, but will probably be around $24k. This RS is going to start above the ST, so I would guess around $26k. At that level you really would have to wonder why not spend a couple of extra grand and get a car with AWD that would probably handle all that power better. From what I have read, Ford's new Revo-knuckle tech is pretty good, but its still a "band-aid" solution that would probably be better solved with powering all the wheels.
        zamafir
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        I thought the same, then I picked up a focus SEL as a rental a few days ago. Damn thing handles better than anything American I've driven remotely close to the price, I'm quite keen to test drive the ST when it hits show rooms.
        Jason Allen
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        A couple thousand bucks makes a difference on a monthly car payment.
        John Ward
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Hazdaz
        It's going to need to be 20-22k to really compete, and I don't think they can do that.
      oollyoumn
      • 2 Years Ago
      Such and engine would also work in an F-150 given the wide power band of Ford turbocharged engines. That might even get fuel consumption comparable to the compact trucks. What do they need, 2 more mpg for an F-150 to match the compacts?
        jtav2002
        • 2 Years Ago
        @oollyoumn
        You must not pay attention to the "compact"(not really any compact trucks anymore, more midsize) trucks that are on the market. They don't get good fuel economy at all and are pretty in line with what full sizers get. I have a 2009 Tacoma 4x4 V6. Rated at 16 city 20 highway. I actually got pretty much dead on when I first got it. It's gone down a little bit with the addition of some off road tires and a lift. Not wanting a full size truck is really the only benefit of having a midsize(whether that be for driveability, or wanting something smaller for off roading). Fuel economy isn't really better, and full loaded they're priced into full size territory. I think these days a fully loaded double cab Tacoma with the TRD Off road package stickers at like 34. I think a F150 FX4 starts at only a couple grand more. As well as the Ecoboost 3.5 has done, I think a 4cyl version would have a harder time catching on in a full size.
      Michael
      • 2 Years Ago
      I love how there's always some 16 y/o kid crying for AWD. If you really know anything about cars you would know that there are only a few times when AWD would outperform the FWD with Revoknuckle. Bring it on Ford and please make it a 3-dr hatch.
      herrij
      • 2 Years Ago
      +1 if you are disgusted by a manufacturer adding complexity, weight and cost only to replace the natural music of an engine in a sports car.
      justingr
      • 2 Years Ago
      FAIL. No AWD with 320hp equals waste of engine. Mazda had a hell of a time getting the toque of the Mazdaspeed3 down to the ground, this looks to be more of the same.
        kcroc10077
        • 2 Years Ago
        @justingr
        I've never driven the current RS but those who have say that the car can handle the amount of power the engine is putting out. Though it would be nice to have all-wheel drive.
        Matt
        • 2 Years Ago
        @justingr
        Mazda didn't have a similar setup to Ford's RevoKnuckle which allows the car to handle that 320hp and then some.
        Dean Hammond
        • 2 Years Ago
        @justingr
        when did you drive the current RS?
      Elmo
      • 2 Years Ago
      In before Acid comes in and complains that it won't have AWD and that Americans sucks because of this...
        Krishan Mistry
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Elmo
        Followed by Rant Master, who doesnt try to hide the fact that he is one of the worst trolls on this site.
        AcidTonic
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Elmo
        Didn't have to. Everyone else is already :)
          AcidTonic
          • 2 Years Ago
          @AcidTonic
          @Dean You act like this is the first time we've saw a FWD car. The problems with FWD are well documented. You act like someone shouldn't say anything about a known spec that sucks. So if we complain about an upcoming 35 hosepower 0.5 liter 2 cylinder on a 4000lb car, we're idiots because we haven't driven it yet? We know when specifications indicate suckage.
          Elmo
          • 2 Years Ago
          @AcidTonic
          You didn't have to, but you still did.
      Chris Timberlake
      • 2 Years Ago
      FIVE DOORS!?!?!!? Y U NO HAVE ONLY TWO!?!
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Elmo
        • 2 Years Ago
        2015 as in model year. It'll be coming out in 2014, well within the current 3rd generation's life cycle. The RS usually doesn't come out until the end of the life cycle of the Focus.
      AnthonyL
      • 2 Years Ago
      I love the "weight" excuse for no AWD. The car would be faster even though it would be a couple hundred pounds more (max). Even though their FWD system in the prior RS was the best around, it still doesn't beat AWD.
        Elmo
        • 2 Years Ago
        @AnthonyL
        It doesn't beat AWD? Is that why the Renault Megane RS 250 Cup raped both a modified Evo and a previous generation STI on the Nurburgring? The Chevy Cobalt SS Turbo beat both the Evo (by just a few tenths) and absolutely raped a previous generation STI and a current generation 2008 WRX around VIR.
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          so what happens on a track isnt indicative of daily prowess correct? And lets face it, how many people buy Corvettes and the like that live in the snowbelt?????? SHEESH!
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          oh and Acid, not all FWD cars understeer as you proclaim, sound to me like you really need to learn how to drive, like Ive said before, get out more often before judging.....
          AcidTonic
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Elmo
          And we drive on race tracks every day right? Wrong. Think practical. Yesterday, rainy roads Today, rainy roads This weekend, Snowy roads Which car would be more fun for someone who isn't on a race track? Who gives a flying F what some racer ran with a FWD car. They can be made fast on a track, but I'm not complaining about that. I'm complaining that they suck going from 0-60, they understeer and you have to compromise your driving pleasure to get them to go fast. I love how Autoblog is all over the practicality argument when calling a car niche, but then lives only on a race track when some FWD car beats an AWD car. Suddenly practicality is out the window when it favors the AWD car.
        AcidTonic
        • 2 Years Ago
        @AnthonyL
        Evo IX was only 3250lbs. They had to think outside the box and do things to lower weight. Such as all aluminum body panels. How many production cars come with that option? If you don't plan to use the cheapest materials known to man, you can hide the weight of AWD with lighter materials. We'll happily pay for it :)
          Krishan Mistry
          • 2 Years Ago
          @AcidTonic
          But the Evo X weighs 3600lbs. Unless Mitsu manages to bring the weight back down for the XI, then the weight issue stands.
          Dean Hammond
          • 2 Years Ago
          @AcidTonic
          hmm, its 3600 and if by thinking outside the box is deletion of sound insulation and thinner gauge steel, cheesy interior and lack of acruements, then MAN THEY PUSHED THE ENVELOPE!
      Durishin
      • 2 Years Ago
      No AWD = no interest from this potential buyer.
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