Just in case you haven’t read our “First Drive” report on the 2013 Ford Focus ST, let us sum it up by saying we loved the car. Editor Bengt Halvorson praised its performance, handling and refinement before calling it “tough competition” for others in the hot hatch segment.
Ford wants to show you the same thing in video form, so it’s launching a YouTube series called “Focus ST Sessions.” In the first episode, a Focus ST throws down against a Mazdaspeed3, a Subaru WRX and a BMW M3 up a (closed) mountain road.
To be honest, we have issues with the video, which fails to accurately portray the performance capabilities of the Focus ST compared to others in the hot hatch segment. In it, a casual Focus ST driver whistles past both the Mazdaspeed3 and the Subaru WRX before being caught and passed by a BMW M3.
Yes, we know the video isn’t meant to be taken literally, and Ford is trying to show that the Focus ST surpasses the Mazdaspeed3 and Subaru WRX in features, while losing to the faster (and much more expensive) BMW M3.
We’re not lecturing, but we don’t think showing drivers dicing wheel-to-wheel on (closed) public roads is a good idea to promote a hot hatch aimed at young buyers. We’d have been much more impressed if Ford chose a racetrack setting for the video, particularly if it was able to show that the Focus ST really is faster than the competition depicted.
Ford did include the standard, “Closed course, professional drivers. Do not attempt.” disclaimer in between shots of drivers crossing double-yellow lines and passing on the inside of corners, but we’ll throw out another reminder: the track is only place for driving like this.