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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Will the US get the Focus RS? not likely

Ford Focus RS

Now that Ford is finally planning to offer its highly-desirable European models stateside over the next few years, enthusiasts can only hope that Dearborn is mulling over whether or not to bring some performance models too. The company's latest go-fast creation, the Focus RS, debuted at the recent London Motor Show boasting a screaming 2.5L Duratec turbo-four under the hood, and if execs look to U.K. reaction as a measure of how the car would do in the U.S., we might be in luck -- 1000 British customers have already placed orders for the new hot hatch so far.

Since its appearance in London, Ford says its UK dealer network has been inundated with RS orders, with 40% of buyers asking for it in Electric Green, the shade featured by the show car. Other popular requests were Frozen White and Electric Blue. Representing a return of the famed Rallye Sport badge last seen in 2002, the RS puts out 295 hp and 302 lb-ft of torque and includes extras such as a Quaife Automatic Torque Biasing limited-slip differential and a front suspension system called a "RevoKnuckle" designed to reduce torque steer. Despite lacking the all-wheel drive setup some competitors boast, the Focus RS manages an estimated 0 to 62 mph time of under 6 sec.

Given Saturn's recent troubles selling an imported Old World compact, the Blue Oval is being cautious with its new strategy and making sure the cars it will sell are profitable. But when Ford of Britain's chairman and managing director Roelant de Waard says the company is "delighted by the reaction of performance car enthusiasts to the new Focus RS and that so many want to place orders even though it will not be available until early next year," hopefully the staff in Michigan will take notice and let American drivers in on the fun, too.

Source: Ford