The New Fo­cus RS De­liv­ers High-Per­for­mance Tech­nol­ogy and In­no­va­tive En­gi­neer­ing

The Washington Post Sunday - - AUTOMOTIVE -

The all-new Ford Fo­cus RS made its global de­but at the Geneva Mo­tor Show. The high-per­for­mance road car pioneers in­no­va­tive Ford Per­for­mance All-Wheel Drive, and de­liv­ers class-lead­ing cor­ner­ing speed for thrilling per­for­mance and un­bri­dled driv­ing en­joy­ment. Fo­cus RS in­tro­duces ad­vanced per­for­mance tech­nolo­gies, and is the first Ford RS equipped with se­lectable drive modes – in­clud­ing in­dus­try-first drift mode, as well as launch con­trol. With a 2.3-liter EcoBoost® en­gine de­liv­er­ing well in ex­cess of 315 horse­power, the high-per­for­mance road car fea­tures the most pow­er­ful Ford RS brak­ing sys­tem ever. Its dra­matic ex­te­rior de­sign of­fers op­ti­mized aero­dy­nam­ics and cool­ing, with 9 per­cent less drag than the pre­vi­ous Fo­cus RS. “The all-new Fo­cus RS is a se­ri­ous ma­chine with high-per­for­mance tech­nol­ogy and in­no­va­tive en­gi­neer­ing that sets new bench­marks for driv­ing ex­hil­a­ra­tion on the road and track,” said Raj Nair, Ford Mo­tor Com­pany group vice pres­i­dent, Global Prod­uct De­vel­op­ment. “The RS line has a proud history of tech­ni­cal break­throughs that have mi­grated to main­stream Fords to ben­e­fit all of our cus­tomers,” he added, “and the new Fo­cus RS is no ex­cep­tion. It’s a great ex­am­ple of our pas­sion for in­no­va­tion through per­for­mance, and cre­at­ing ve­hi­cles that make peo­ple’s hearts pound.”

Fo­cus RS is the latest ve­hi­cle to be un­veiled as part of a new era of Ford per­for­mance that will bring to cus­tomers glob­ally more than 12 per­for­mance ve­hi­cles through 2020. In ad­di­tion to pleas­ing en­thu­si­asts, these ve­hi­cles help de­liver the com­pany’s One Ford plan for prof­itable growth, prod­uct ex­cel­lence and in­no­va­tion in ev­ery part of its busi­ness. De­vel­oped by a small team of Ford Per­for­mance engi­neers in Europe and the United States, the high­per­for­mance hatch is the third­gen­er­a­tion Fo­cus RS, fol­low­ing mod­els launched in 2002 and 2009. It’s the 30th car to wear the leg­endary RS badge, fol­low­ing such tech­nol­ogy trend­set­ters as the 1970 16-valve Es­cort RS1600, 1985 tur­bocharged Sierra RS Cos­worth with rad­i­cal aero­dy­nam­ics and 1992 Es­cort RS Cos­worth with four-wheel drive. “The new Fo­cus RS rep­re­sents Ford at its pas­sion­ate best – de­liv­er­ing in­no­va­tion, un­matched driv­ing dy­nam­ics and stun­ning per­for­mance that was pre­vi­ously only avail­able with high-priced per­for­mance lux­ury mar­ques and ex­otics,” said Jim Far­ley, Ford Mo­tor Com­pany ex­ec­u­tive vice pres­i­dent and pres­i­dent, Europe, Mid­dle East and Africa. “We are acutely aware of the bench­marks we’ve set our­selves with RS per­for­mance mod­els through the years, and rest as­sured that this new car raises the game to a new level.

“Just as im­por­tant is the fact that with tech­nolo­gies such as EcoBoost,” he added, “we are able to demon­strate how an in­no­va­tion that pow­ers al­most ev­ery car in our range can also be the heart­beat of our finest per­for­mance cars.”

In­no­va­tive Ford Per­for­mance All-Wheel Drive of­fers un­matched han­dling

“Just as im­por­tant is the fact that with tech­nolo­gies such as EcoB The all-new Fo­cus RS ex­ploits in­no­va­tive Ford Per­for­mance All- Wheel Drive with Dy­namic Torque Vec­tor­ing to de­liver a new level of han­dling ca­pa­bil­ity and driver en­joy­ment – com­bin­ing out­stand­ing trac­tion and grip with un­matched agility and cor­ner­ing speed. Ford Per­for­mance All-Wheel Drive is based on twin elec­tron­i­cally con­trolled clutch packs on each side of the reardrive unit. These man­age the car’s front/ rear torque split, and can con­trol side-to-side torque dis­tri­bu­tion on the rear axle – de­liv­er­ing the torque vec­tor­ing ca­pa­bil­ity that has a dra­matic im­pact on han­dling and cor­ner­ing sta­bil­ity.

The con­trol unit in the rear-drive unit con­tin­u­ously varies the front/ rear and side-to-side torque dis­tri­bu­tion to suit the driv­ing sit­u­a­tion – mon­i­tor­ing in­puts from mul­ti­ple ve­hi­cle sen­sors 100 times per sec­ond. A max­i­mum of 70 per­cent of the drive torque can be di­verted to the rear axle. Up to 100 per­cent of avail­able torque at the rear axle can be sent to each rear wheel.

In cor­ner­ing sit­u­a­tions, the reardrive unit pre-emp­tively di­verts torque to the outer rear wheel im­me­di­ately based on in­puts such as steer­ing wheel an­gle, lat­eral ac­cel­er­a­tion, yaw and speed. This torque trans­fer has the ef­fect of “driv­ing” the car into a bend – achiev­ing im­proved turn-in and sta­bil­ity while vir­tu­ally elim­i­nat­ing un­der­steer.

“This all-wheel-drive sys­tem is a break­through tech­nol­ogy – ca­pa­ble of de­liv­er­ing supreme cor­ner­ing and han­dling at the limit,” said Dave Per­i­cak, di­rec­tor, Global Ford Per­for­mance. “We ripped up the rule­book that says all-wheel-drive hatch­backs can­not be fun to drive, and cre­ated a car that will sur­prise and re­ward in equal mea­sure.” To de­liver op­ti­mum driv­ing dy­nam­ics, Ford Per­for­mance All-Wheel Drive has been cal­i­brated along­side the car’s ad­vanced Elec­tronic Sta­bil­ity Con­trol, in par­tic­u­lar, the brake-based torquevec­tor­ing sys­tem that works in par­al­lel with the torque-vec­tor­ing all-wheel drive. The car’s ex­te­rior de­sign has been de­vel­oped to sup­port the dy­namic ob­jec­tives as well. Aero­dy­namic op­ti­miza­tion of the front split­ter, rear spoiler and un­der­body elim­i­nates lift forces, and the fi­nal de­sign de­liv­ers bal­anced per­for­mance with zero-lift front and rear, for op­ti­mum high­speed han­dling and sta­bil­ity.


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