When most people think of a Ford Focus they think of a small sensible hatchback car that gets good fuel economy. They know that it can easily haul four adults or a multitude of large objects with the rear seats folded down. In most hatchbacks, this level of practicality usually exists at the expense of power and handling. Most people don’t expect a Focus to be very fast or fun to drive, a perception that the 2017 Ford Focus RS seeks to drastically change.
In creating the Focus RS, Ford aimed to make a Focus for the automotive enthusiast who wants a fun daily drivable car. By giving the RS aggressive looks combined with a 6-speed manual transmission, Ford was off to a good start. To do both the looks and transmission justice, a 2.3L 350 horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder engine and an advanced all-wheel drive system was added. This combination of components gives the RS the ability to go from 0-60 mph in only 3.7 seconds. To tame all of this power, the RS is fitted with tried and true Brembo brakes. Despite these impressive performance specifications, it still has the same interior space and features of any other Focus. Even with many RS’s currently selling over MSRP, the car’s great qualities can still be enjoyed for about the price of a four-door sedan.
To top it all off, the RS is a performance car that can be enjoyed year round. The car’s advanced all-wheel drive system is not only valuable for performance minded drivers, but also for dealing with Central NY winters. Coupled with a set of snow tires, the RS goes from being a fast summer car to a car that can handle even the worst winter snowstorms.
With performance rivaling less practical cars like the Mustang or Camaro, on paper the RS has the ability to be both a fun sports car and a practical family and equipment hauler. To find out Apex Creative Director, Justin Palmer’s thoughts on driving the 2017 Ford Focus RS, please check out this video review.
Words by Jacob Cetnar and photos by Chris Penree