Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
6/6/17 9:47 a.m.
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The American market has been asking for the Focus RS for years. Now we finally have it, and it doesn't disappoint. How can you not like 350 all-wheel horsepower and an option for "drift mode?" The price isn't even that gaudy, considering how hard Ford fans lobbied for the RS to come stateside. It starts at $35,900. Sure that's an expensive Focus, but does the performance make up for that premium?

Our test car came in a dark shade of gray and was optioned out with navigation and heated seats, steering wheel and mirrors.

Read the rest of the story

fidelity101
fidelity101 SuperDork
6/6/17 9:55 a.m.

The ride around town is pretty decent? You're headquarters is not in Detroit clearly...

also the palm trees are a give away :)

David S. Wallens
David S. Wallens Editorial Director
6/6/17 9:59 a.m.
fidelity101 wrote: The ride around town is pretty decent? You're headquarters is not in Detroit clearly... also the palm trees are a give away :)

Hey, we have railroad crossings here! I'd put the ride on par with my M3--maybe even better. I really expected the Focus to be much worse.

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
6/6/17 10:07 a.m.

Like JG, I wanted to love it too. Unlike David ... I did think it was just a tarted up econobox. Unlike Tom... I'd take the 235i over it any day but I do actually think the RS looks better than the BMW.

In the end, I like that it exists and I like the idea of it a whole lot more than I like the actual car. I ended up spending almost the same money on a japanese pickup so what do I know.

mazdeuce
mazdeuce MegaDork
6/6/17 10:11 a.m.

We saw that in your parking a lot a couple of weeks ago and were wondering when we'd hear about it.

fidelity101
fidelity101 SuperDork
6/6/17 10:12 a.m.
David S. Wallens wrote:
fidelity101 wrote: The ride around town is pretty decent? You're headquarters is not in Detroit clearly... also the palm trees are a give away :)

Hey, we have railroad crossings here! I'd put the ride on par with my M3--maybe even better. I really expected the Focus to be much worse.

This vehicle isn't a dearborn design so you know its not their fault for the ride harshness, the dang perfect German roads and their European counterparts in Koln did this...

jstein77
jstein77 UltraDork
6/6/17 10:22 a.m.
Huckleberry wrote: Like JG, I wanted to love it too. Unlike David ... I did think it was just a tarted up econobox. Unlike Tom... I'd take the 235i over it any day but I do actually think the RS looks better than the BMW. In the end, I like that it exists and I like the idea of it a whole lot more than I like the actual car. I ended up spending almost the same money on a japanese pickup so what do I know.

You're joking, right? Never knew a tarted up econobox that does 4 wheel drifts. The handling is other-worldly in autocrosses.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/nKZ31NeKuyg

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
6/6/17 10:27 a.m.

In reply to jstein77:

I meant the interior. I call bullE36 M3 on the 3 series comparison.

The RS, like the Evo, has a tarted up econobox body, interior and materials. The comparison was spot on to me. It does 4 wheel drifts. So did the STi and Evo.

So does the VW, but that has totally sweet interior to go with.

You liked it, you bought it... awesome. I liked it, sat in it and walked away. Different strokes.

EDIT: And for what it's worth... you can 4-wheel drift anything if you corner fast enough. There usually isn't a button for it though, that I'll grant.

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
6/6/17 10:34 a.m.
Ed Higginbotham wrote: In reply to Huckleberry: I agree the Focus looks the part. I thought it felt more well put together than other Focuses (Foci?).

I loooove the way it looks. In all honesty - if it had the same level of interior as the BMW or VW for that money I'd probably have bought it. Or, if it was $5k cheaper. I spend too much time on the inside of a car to buy one I don't like the inside of and at that price point I couldn't even talk myself into it.

Every time I see one in the wild though - I smile.

Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
6/6/17 10:34 a.m.

I think there is also something to be said for the quality of interiors found in cars like the Focus these days. They don't feel nearly as cheap as they used to. The RS may have a similar interior to the ST or base, but I don't know if that makes it bad or cheap. I'm a fan.

Ed Higginbotham
Ed Higginbotham Associate Editor
6/6/17 10:39 a.m.
Huckleberry wrote: I spend too much time on the inside of a car to buy one I don't like the inside of

That's a solid point. Everyone has their own tastes and viewpoints.

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
6/6/17 10:44 a.m.
Ed Higginbotham wrote: I think there is also something to be said for the quality of interiors found in cars like the Focus these days. They don't feel nearly as cheap as they used to. The RS may have a similar interior to the ST or base, but I don't know if that makes it bad or cheap. I'm a fan.

When I was shopping I was looking at a Golf R that could be driven... and an RS that was roped off with no test drives. I LOVED the Golf R but I do not love VAG in any way. I wanted to love the Ford but by comparison after driving the Golf R - sitting in the RS was a massive step in the wrong direction. They were also not selling RSs at MSRP at that time so... no dice.

Maybe someday I'll take another look. I haven't been in one since November of '16. It could be my jaundiced memory by comparison to the Golf making it worse than it really is.

fidelity101
fidelity101 SuperDork
6/7/17 4:28 a.m.

I am really sad that they won't make this model for a few more years, they are really making the RS special instead of an EVO or STI - not to say that they aren't special but by volume sake there are considerably more of them out there which means more get to be raced instead of garage ownership. However I don't think anyone is buying a focus and thinking "this will make me money one day as a good investment..."

all in all this ruins my 10 year plan to own a higher mileage one in fair condition or slightly damaged cheap so I can run it as a proper stage rally car for super production that isnt a subaru or evo.

Jerry
Jerry UltraDork
6/7/17 10:31 a.m.
fidelity101 wrote: I am really sad that they won't make this model for a few more years, they are really making the RS special instead of an EVO or STI -

Hm. I wanted to see how the drivetrain and suspension holds up after a few years of abuse, then decide. Either I won't get my chance, or maybe I'll get lucky and find a current one with 36K for fun.

captdownshift
captdownshift PowerDork
6/7/17 12:10 p.m.

In reply to fidelity101:

Once Subaru finally does a proper overhaul of the STi, Tim will likely part ways with his prepped RS for roughly what sticker was. That'll be your ticket, bargain for a few weeks of school to be tossed in.

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