The 2012 Ford Focus ST has burst out of the blocks overnight to become one of the first vehicles unveiled at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show.
Almost a year after appearing at the 2010 Paris Motor Show in concept form, Ford has lifted the covers off the production version of its new global performance model, the Focus ST. If you remember the showcar’s looks and specifications, there is nothing surprising about the production version of the five-door hatchback.
What comes as a surprise though is the introduction of a station wagon body style of the Focus ST. However, unlike the hatch that will be sold across the globe, the Focus ST Wagon will be offered exclusively in Europe – at least for now.
As speculated, the 2012 Ford Focus ST is powered by a 2.0-litre EcoBoost turbocharged petrol engine with 184 kW of power and 360 Nm of torque (up 18 kW/40 Nm from the old five-cylinder engine). A six-speed manual transmission sends power to the front wheels, and Ford says it has tuned the gearing to produce maximum punch from each throw, while also stretching sixth for supreme fuel economy on longer highway runs.
Ford claims that the four-banger is more potent as well as more fuel efficient than the previous ST’s Volvo-sourced five-cylinder unit, while Jost Capito, director of Global Performance Vehicles, says the it will deliver an equally exciting sound. “People loved the sound of the previous Focus ST,” said Capito. “The physics and acoustics of a 5-cylinder engine compared to a 4-cylinder are very different, but like Beethoven and Mozart – both of whom created fantastic yet very different music – we believe the engine note of the new Focus ST will delight enthusiasts in the same way.”
Ford’s engineers have uprated the ST’s suspension and brakes – the ST rides 10 mm lower than the standard Focus – while the performance model also comes equipped with a more aggressive tuning of Ford’s Torque Steer Compensation (TSC) system and an enhanced version of the Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) with three modes to choose from. The ST rides on a set of 18-inch alloy wheels shod in high performance 235/40R18 Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric 2 tyres.
On the outside, the 2012 Ford Focus ST is available to order in Tangerine Scream, Performance Blue, Race Red and White. ST customers will also be able to opt for a ‘Performance Pack’ which offers the wheels in black with a high contrast red finish on the performance brake calipers.
Inside, the Recaro seats have been designed specially for the new ST, with an emphasis on a lower driver position and support during spirited driving. They also incorporate premium features like cushion tilt and length adjustment. Depending on the specification level, the new Ford Focus ST will come standard with keyless start, dual-zone climate control, automatic bi-xenon headlights, auto-dimming mirrors and automatic wipers.
The full specifications of the 2012 Ford Focus ST will be revealed closer to its South African launch, which we expect will be sometime next year.