2011 ford focus rs500

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.