2016 Ford Focus RSEnlarge Photo
Ford Motor Company’s [NYSE:F] new Focus RS hasn’t even reached showrooms yet—at least here in the United States—but there’s already talk of an even hotter version. According to reports out of the United Kingdom, the reaction to the 350-horsepower Focus RS is being studied closely by Ford, and it’s this that will influence the automaker’s decision to launch additional variants.
Autocar, citing a Ford insider, reports that the hotter Focus RS could end up being the quickest-accelerating hatchback in production. Ford quotes a 0-62 mph time of 4.7 seconds for the Focus RS. By comparison, Audi’s RS 3 Sportback will achieve the same feat in 4.3 seconds and Mercedes-AMG’s A45 can do it in just 4.2 seconds.
Performance gains would be brought about by reducing weight, improving grip levels and enhancing the all-wheel-drive drivetrain. Some of the options are said to include carbon fiber-reinforced plastic panels, polycarbonate windows, a limited-slip differential for the front axle, and even a dual-clutch transmission.
Sadly, an increase in power is said to be off the table due to cooling constraints. Apparently, the 350-hp output of the turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder in the standard car is already close to the limit.
This wouldn’t be the first time that the Focus RS spawned a hotter version. Fans of the hot hatch will recall that the previous model had a more potent RS500 model launched towards the end of its life cycle.