According to Autocar, the proposed car would use a higher output version of the Blue Oval's 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder driving the front wheels and an electric motor at the rear. This would allow for both on-demand all-wheel-drive and electric-only drive at low speeds. If this plan proceeds, it would be Ford's first through-the-road hybrid, although French automaker Peugeot has firm plans to introduce at least two vehicles with a similar configuration in 2011.
Other alternatives reportedly being studied by Ford are an even higher output gasoline engine (sans motor assistance), or use of the next-generation power-split hybrid that debuts in 2012. However, both of these options would involve sticking with front-wheel-drive and could be problematic if Ford wants to surpass the output of the current RS.