New Ford Fiesta ST and Focus ST Development Under Way
Ford Performance is starting work on the next-generation Fiesta and Focus ST now that the Focus RS is in production, but a hot version of the current Mondeo looks increasingly unlikely.
Focus RS chief engineer Tyrone Johnson told Autocar his next job was to start work on the replacements for the Fiesta and Focus STs.
Although Johnson wouldn’t discuss production dates, the new Focus and Fiesta are due in 2018-2019, suggesting launch dates for the ST versions of 2019-2020.
Johnson says both cars will have to retain their blend of accessible performance and everyday usability but will also have to evolve to deal with competition from new rivals.
Johnson was less encouraging about a Mondeo ST being engineered to rival the Audi S4/S6 and BMW M3/M5.
“It’s a pretty big car and the rivals are now offering around 500bhp. I think that’s a big ask for the Mondeo,” he said.
At around 1800kg and nearly 4.9 metres long, the Mondeo is closer in size to the BMW 5 Series than the 3 Series.
“Making a fast Mondeo fit our HP2 category would be very difficult,” said Johnson.
Any Ford Performance model has to fit into one of three categories — HP1, HP2 and Elite — which Ford defines by strict performance and handling criteria.
The new GT is an Elite model, while the Focus RS and HP2 and the Fiesta/Focus ST are HP1s.