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The 2017 Ford Focus RS Is Stupid Fun

This is a discussion on The 2017 Ford Focus RS Is Stupid Fun within the News forums, part of the Site News category; By Roger Garbow, 3 January 2017 A manual transmission, a drift mode, and a sticker of $36,000 are three reasons this hot hatch will make ...

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Thread: The 2017 Ford Focus RS Is Stupid Fun

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    The 2017 Ford Focus RS Is Stupid Fun

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    By Roger Garbow, 3 January 2017

    A manual transmission, a drift mode, and a sticker of $36,000 are three reasons this hot hatch will make you smile

    Drivers tend to fall into two camps. There are those who consider cars merely as transportation—a necessary evil of life. Then there are people who actually enjoy sliding behind the wheel and taking control of the vehicle—after all,*your car can reveal a lot about your personality. I’m in the latter camp. For us, Ford has created a farting, hyperactive pit bull: the new Focus RS.

    Ford first tested the U.S. “hot hatch” waters with the excellent Fiesta ST and Focus ST. Packing a 252-horsepower 2.0L turbo four, the front-wheel-drive Focus ST proved the potential of the platform and sold enough units to finally warrant development of a fire-breathing all-wheel-drive version for American enthusiasts. (European buyers have been enjoying a 300 horsepower FWD Focus RS since 2009. Lucky bastards.)

    The 2017 RS packs an astonishing 350-horsepower and 350 lb.-ft. of torque*from a tiny 2.3L EcoBoost 4-cylinder turbo. *That massive amount of power is sent to a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system through a 6-speed manual transmission. There is no other option available so if you can’t do the three-pedal-dance, you’re out of luck.

    The RS has a nicely equipped base price of just over $36,000. (If you’re looking to save some cash on your next car, check out these tips from a real car salesman.) Even if you check all the options, including adding heat and leather to the thick-bolstered Recaros, a power moonroof, and a navigation system, you’ll still be under $44k. Unless you plan on using the RS exclusively as your track toy, skip the $1990 tire upgrade. The stock Michelin Pilot Super Sports are plenty sticky, much better in the wet and will last longer than the optional Sport Cup 2 tires.

    The RS is essentially a street-legal rally car, which is ironic since it has so much potential that you can’t legally exploit on the street. I took it to my favorite road course, New York’s Monticello Motor Club. MMC’s full course is 3.6-miles long with 18 corners, heavy braking zones and 450 feet of elevation change working in concert to uncover a car’s weaknesses. The RS took everything the track could throw at it without even breathing hard.*

    Through a button on the console, there are four different drive modes available including track and drift. I started with track mode but it seemed to allow too much understeer, so I ended up using Drift Mode for most of my sessions. Drift Mode allows you to rotate the rear more, particularly in tighter corners. Besides, it’s always more fun when you can hang the tail out. The Brembo brakes offered excellent feel and hauled the car down quickly and fade-free lap after lap while the loud snorts from the exhaust let everyone else know this was no econobox.*

    After torturing the tires on the track, I took the RS across the street to MMC’s off-road course to try my best Tanner Foust impersonation. Sticking to the flat sections of dirt and keeping the car in drift mode, the RS was stupid fun, throwing up huge roostertails of dirt from all four tires. It was very easy to control and delivered surprising grip in spite of the asphalt-focused tires. If I owned an RS I would get a short lift kit and throw some aggressive, taller tires on it, at least for the winter months.*

    While Subaru really cracked open the door to this segment here in the U.S. with the WRX and STI, Ford just ripped that door off its hinges. You might wonder how much abuse the RS could take. My test car had over 7,500 miles on it. Those weren’t just any miles, but auto journalist miles. Brutal miles. People have been beating the snot out of the car since day one, yet everything worked perfectly and the car felt tight as a drum.*

    If you can handle the firm seats, stiff suspension and barking exhaust, the Focus RS will deliver driving nirvana (just like these other 19 insanely cool cars). Ford didn’t just make a hotter hatch, they created a rally car for the common man.

    Your First Look At the 2017 Ford Focus RS | Men?s Health
    GrayRS and Rallycross like this.
    2013 #2008,#349 of 2286 in PB ST2, Panda Tuned, Mountune CBE, CAI, DP, re-circ valve, and Strut Tower Brace, FRPP shifter, K&N filter, Steeda rear sway/strut tower bars, 3M clear bra, WeatherTechs w/ST badges, Zunsport grill kit, Tail of the Dragon decal, Hoonigan crash bar!
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    RS Specialist focus pilot's Avatar
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    If I owned an RS I would get a short lift kit and throw some aggressive, taller tires on it, at least for the winter months.*
    I think the author is really on to something here.Name:  drift mode.jpg
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    Keeping it pinned down while all cylinders are -6 is not good practice

    Money comes and goes, RS don't.
    Dude your life is also ticking away.
    Buy th damn car and mod away.

    The ST is an ST that's all it will ever be.

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