The Focus RS Isn’t Even Old Yet
Automakers are an interesting bunch. Even when they give you something new they are often looking to the next iteration of that item to keep the lineup and models fresh in your mind. If you drive the Focus RS and enjoy all the power that a small turbocharged four-cylinder engine can give you along with the dynamics of the nearly flawless AWD system that has been admired as one of the best you might not think there is anything that could top this vehicle. Even though the Focus RS is new to the market, Ford is already discussing the possibility of something even better.
While there might not be much more in the way of power they can pull from the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine, the idea of making an RS500 is certainly an attractive one. The considerations we hear so far for this new possibility have to do with creating a lighter and more agile vehicle rather than trying to pull more power out of the engine. Taking a bit of the weight out of the current RS will allow the RS500 to use the power that’s present better and not cause as much strain on the engine except to push it past the RS that is already on the track.
There is precedence for the RS500 as the Sierra Cosworth version was an evolutionary model that could easily be developed and created at Ford. In order to reduce the weight of the car to enjoy more of the power at the wheels the car could use polycarbonate window, a carbon composite bodywork, make use of hood scoops and vents and even add a front limited slip differential to the mix. There are a number of possibilities that could help to make the car lighter, faster and more agile to be the version of the Focus RS that is truly the performance model.
Another change would be to add carbon-fiber wheels, but the need would be for Carbon Revolution to make them in a much smaller size than they do for the other vehicles they supply so far. While there is no rush to get an RS500 on the track or on the road, this could be a significant difference in the weight of the car, especially considering it already has a very low weight. The size needed for this car would be 19 x 11 inches, which would certainly be a challenge when it comes to strength.
There is no reason to get ahead of ourselves just yet. As I mentioned, the Focus RS is new for 2016 and hasn’t even been on the market that long yet. Ford will need to gauge the market and see what the demand is for the current model before adding a lot of tech and money into taking weight out of the car and creating the next version of their already impressive hot hatch. Don’t be surprised if you see an RS500 mule on the test tracks soon though, this seems like too good of an idea to pass up.