Ford has just redesigned its Focus but the sporty ST version isn't quite ready yet. (The debut is expected to take place at the 2019 Geneva auto show next March.)

Prototypes for the new Focus ST suggest the car will follow a familiar path in terms of styling, but what's making up the mechanicals remains unclear.

Last year we heard reports that Ford will ditch the current model's 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 in favor of a 1.5-liter turbocharged inline-4. Despite the engine downsizing, power was said to be going up still.

2019 Ford Focus

2019 Ford Focus

Autocar has since learned that the new ST will likely receive a 2.3-liter turbocharged inline-4 related to the engine found in the current Focus RS. The RS's engine can safely be tuned to as much as 370 horsepower but the new ST will likely have something closer to the current model's 252 hp because of its planned front-wheel-drive layout. Autocar also reports that the new ST will be offered exclusively with a 6-speed manual to maintain a driver's car attitude.

Underpinning the redesigned Focus is Ford's next-generation modular platform for small cars. In the regular Focus the chassis and suspension design ups torsional rigidity by 20 percent compared to the last Focus, and this bodes well for its upcoming ST model's ride and handling.

But if the ST gets a similar engine to the current RS, what will power the next generation of the Focus flagship? We hear the car will receive a hybrid powertrain with as much as 400 hp.