Ford’s Focus RS to get 350 horsepower, start at $36,605

Michael Martinez
The Detroit News

Ford Motor Co. on Wednesday said its Focus RS performance car can hit a maximum speed of 165 miles per hour and will get up to 350 horsepower — more than previously projected when the small car was announced back in February.

The Dearborn automaker said the RS, which goes on sale for the first time in the United States in spring 2016, can go from 0-62 miles per hour in 4.7 seconds and can get up to 350 pound-feet of torque. Ford had previously said the RS would get “more than 315 horsepower.”

The all-wheel-drive car is powered by a 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine and is equipped with a six-speed manual transmission. It will be built at Ford’s plant in Sarrlouis, Germany, and will go on sale in Asia, North America and Europe in 2016.

Pricing will start at $36,605.

“The all-new Focus RS will bring the legendary nameplate to a new generation of global customers for the first time,” Dave Pericak, director, Ford Performance, said in a statement. “Focus RS delivers stunning performance and innovative technology at a price that will make both enthusiast consumers and premium automakers look twice.”

Focus RS drivers can select from four different drive modes that configure the all-wheel-drive system, damper controls, electronic stability control, steering and engine responses, and exhaust sound for the best possible performance whether they’re on the road or track. Normal, sport or track settings are available, along with a special drift mode to help the driver achieve controlled oversteer drifts at the track.

Ford has said the new rally sport version of its small car will compete directly against the Subaru WRX STI, VW Golf R and Mitsubishi EVO.

Ford last introduced a Focus RS five years ago for the 2009 model, and before that in 2002 — but those cars were sold only in Europe. The latest car will be the 30th vehicle to wear Ford’s RS badge.

(313) 222-2401