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Ford Focus RS officially confirmed for 2015

Hero returns: Ford CEO and president Mark Fields has confirmed the new Focus RS performance hatch will launch globally next year, with a 2016 arrival in Australia likely.

The Ford Focus RS hot-hatch hero will be built and could pack Mustang’s engine

Ford logo12 Dec 2014

By RICHARD BERRY

FORD’S global boss has announced the Focus RS pocket rocket will return in 2015, ready to take the fight to a new generation of hot-hatch rivals.

Speaking at a press conference in Detroit , Ford Motor Company chief executive officer and president Mark Fields said the Blue Oval was changing the way it viewed performance cars.

“We are transforming our approach to performance and what you should expect from us is that we will continue to bring to market those products that people really crave around performance,” he said.

“So today one of the things that we’re announcing is a new Focus RS will be coming to the market and it’s going to be coming globally.”

The official confirmation comes after a prototype of the three-door hatch was spotted testing at Germany’s Nurburgring track in June.

Ford has not revealed powertrain details but it’s possible that a tuned version of the new Mustang’s 227kW/408Nm 2.3-litre inline turbo-petrol four-cylinder EcoBoost engine could find its way into the snout of the RS but making close to 260kW.

It will need the extra power if it wants to keep up with Audi’s 270kW/465Nm RS3 revealed this week and expected to launch in Australia at the end of 2015.

Also providing stiff competition will be the current hot hatch king – the Renault Megane RS 275 Trophy R with its superb dynamics and 201kW/360Nm inline four-cylinder turbo-petrol powerplant.

The Focus RS will also have to contend with Volkswagen’s all-wheel drive 206kW/380Nm Golf R and Honda's Civic Type R that will be powered by a 206kW 2.0-litre i-VTEC turbocharged four-cylinder engine when it arrives Down Under late next year.

The previous-generation Focus RS went on sale here in 2010 with only 315 of the front-wheel drive hot hatches allocated to Australia and New Zealand.

Powered by a Volvo developed 224kW/440Nm 2.5-litre turbo-petrol five-cylinder engine the RS came exclusively with a six-speed manual.

The new RS will be the flagship of the Focus line-up. While Ford Australia said it could not confirm prices or when it will arrive, the RS will sit above the Focus ST which is priced at $38,390, plus on road costs. Based on the current generation LW Focus the RS is expected to launch in Australia in 2016.

According to Ford’s announcement, the Focus RS’s return is part of a plan to bring 12 new performance orientated vehicles to market by 2020. The only model confirmed in the announcement, however, was the Focus RS.

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