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Focus ST Review


Neimad
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Nice rounded review with a subtle dig at the VXR "... but the ST is so much more capable at putting all of its power down without wasting it in wheelspin or corrupting it with excessive torque steer".

I do like how they state that "... tuned by Ford's TeamRS to a substantial 221bhp". I thought that was de-tuned from the Volvo 5-pot turbo which normal has about 250hp!! (maybe I'm wrong).

However, a 5-pot T engine is defintely a good thing and even after you add in the extras, inc leather, its still under £20k. Damn good value for money in the current Hot Hatch market!

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i think i mentioned it in a previous post, this will seriously be a lot of car for the money, and not just a package packed with toys and a good engine but as seen by the review a cracking drive.....

just trying to find someone that can get me one in black on ford privledge discount!

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That's the point....EVERYTHING on the Ford is cheaper and whereas it enables those with less dosh to get value-for-money, it just doesn't cut the mustard. The styling is just like the Vauxhall VXR....Chunky common crap imo. It will date like the proverbial. Ford have missed a great opportunity....Yet again!!

I wish I could find something I like about both this and the VXR....The performance perhaps but certainly nuthin else.

I'd rather have a BMW 1-Series even (different money though, I realise).

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Red, we realise you like your GTi more than anything in the World but it really doesn't need to be at the expense of every other car?

Open your mind - Not every car in the GTis class is a threat, just another choice.

I'm an ex total Golf nut but I'm liking this Focus a lot more than the GTI yet am not all that keen on the VXR.

The new ST will handle VERY well, it will sound lovely, it will be properly quick, it will look subtle but purposeful, all the press are getting very excited about it.

I'm going to try one out (tried a Focus when choosing the Ashtray but no powerful options at the time) and expect it to be excellent.

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MAstra....You misunderstand me....When I write "I wish I could find something I like about both this and the VXR....The performance perhaps but certainly nuthin else" I mean those words. I am looking at it objectively. When someone discusses a car I like I'll say so. I love the Cayenne and a great many other cars but happen to intensely dislike the styling of both the new ST (modelled from soap not clay) and VXR. Of the two I prefer the VXR. Oh, and I love the new Evo.

I'm sure the new ST will perform and handle extremely well and possibly even better than my Red GTI but I don't like its styling and that's enough to stop me buying one (if I was looking for a new car).

Am only expressing my opinion. 169144-ok.gif

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Have to agree with Red here...

The ST is just too bland and square.

Historicaly I am a Ford man (living in Essex and all that), having owned nearly every RS there was from RS2000's through to RS Turbo's and an Escort Cosworth.

The ST looks like a brick. No character. No stance. Nowhere near aggresive enough.

I was really hoping for a Cosworth version of the focus but it doesn't look like that is gonna happen now with the withdrawl of the RS brand.

The ST just doesn't do it for me in the looks department which to me is quite important. I've got to like the look of the car when it's sitting on my drive. Performance wise it might be up amongst it's competitors in it's class but the specs are not that impressive to outshine the lack of "wow" factor in the eye pleasing department.

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Now I'm not a huge fan of the GTi, not keen on the VXR and the ST doesn't look that good (but does have a 5 pot T engine), but one thing that seems to have been forgotten in all of this is that the VXR and the ST are not a

VW Golf GTi

The Golf GTi is the orginal, started it all, GTi! Others may be faster, look snazzier, have more equipment, etc but they're not a Golf GTi and never will be.

I'm not going to detract from their own capabilities, which I'm sure they have, nor do I want to make the golf out to be something it is not, but driving a Golf GTi (IMO) says more than driving the other two ever will.

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Now lets not be silly - Have you driven an 8v mk3 GTI?

Or a mk4 1.8 or 2.0 (non turbo) GTI?

Utter bobbins and if you bought one it SAYS you were a mug.

Now I like the mk5 GTI but I hate it when it appear that a nice car has been bought for entirely the wrong reasons like the Audi TT.

It's taken VW about 15 years to recapture the mk1/mk2 magic, meanwhile the "others" were buys catching up and even overtaking.

Drive a Focus ST170 next to a mk4 GTI and see how much you think the GTI badge counts for tragic handling and woeful power.

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[ QUOTE ]

Now lets not be silly - Have you driven an 8v mk3 GTI?

Or a mk4 1.8 or 2.0 (non turbo) GTI?

Utter bobbins and if you bought one it SAYS you were a mug.

Now I like the mk5 GTI but I hate it when it appear that a nice car has been bought for entirely the wrong reasons like the Audi TT.

It's taken VW about 15 years to recapture the mk1/mk2 magic, meanwhile the "others" were buys catching up and even overtaking.

Drive a Focus ST170 next to a mk4 GTI and see how much you think the GTI badge counts for tragic handling and woeful power.

[/ QUOTE ]

Point taken and yes I have driven said models and they were gash!!!!! But putting the actuall cars aside and take the name and you still have a powerful image assocaited with that name!

VX didn't really have that, Ford used to have that with the Cosworths of the 80's, but VW have always had it with the Golf GTi

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[ QUOTE ]

Utter bobbins and if you bought one it SAYS you were a mug.

Now I like the mk5 GTI but I hate it when it appear that a nice car has been bought for entirely the wrong reasons like the Audi TT.

[/ QUOTE ]

....I can't let you go unchallenged when writing stuff like that MAstra. Are you serious when you judge that someone has bought any car "entirely for the wrong reasons"? 'Wrong reasons' for you perhaps but what or who are you getting at here?

Otherwise I'm very much in agreement so far with SixDegrees on this subject.

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I would go with the fact that the old GTI was pants at best. There were far better alternatives out.

As I have mentioned in a post in the GTI forum about the new Polo GTI that could be described as a closer match to the spiritual successor of the original GTI as its now almost the same size as the original.

I think its each to there own, but saying that the car is an icon and superb because they have put a badge with three letters on the car you need your bumps feeling. laugh.gif

I would say as a car for quality and style the A3 is better than a GTI, (My other half doesn't want a current Golf she says they are just bland and the interior looks low rent). The Focus will it looks like have a better engine, better noise and better handling which mean a lot for some people.

Strange this but some people look for a good car. not just a badge and call it a good car. shocked.gif

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Personally I think that the Mk5 GTI is an excellent car irrespective of the badge but I'd be stupid to think of it as the best car in the world. This is a debate which can never be concluded because we each have very different requirements and use different criteria to make judgements. The rest is academic and just a head-trip imo....Bit of a waste of time.

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[ QUOTE ]

i think i mentioned it in a previous post, this will seriously be a lot of car for the money, and not just a package packed with toys and a good engine but as seen by the review a cracking drive.....

[/ QUOTE ]

I can't deny that it's a whole lot of motor for what you're paying, especially when compared against its rivals. However, if the interior build quality of the standard Focus is anything to go by then I'd have prefered that Ford have upped the price and spent some time and money on the part of the car that matters most... the bit you live with day in, day out.

Okay so VW might not be on a par with Audi as far as interiors go, and they might not be as good now as they were a number of years earlier, but they're still head and shoulders above the competition. Some might not be too fussy about such things, prefering to focus (no pun intended) on the handling and performance of the beast, but for those that want a consumate all rounder that doesn't say all the wrong things about you, is no slouch on the road, and can still get you where you're going without making your ears bleed or your spine shatter, they come no better than the Golf GTI...

The other manufacturers may be getting a lot closer these days, but I can only say "keep trying".

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[ QUOTE ]

However, if the interior build quality of the standard Focus is anything to go by then I'd have prefered that Ford have upped the price and spent some time and money on the part of the car that matters most... the bit you live with day in, day out.

[/ QUOTE ]

That is SO spot on. I recently changed jobs, so I have to put up with a loaner Focus TDCi for a few weeks until my new A4 gets delivered. Coming from Audi, I have to say that the build quality is truly shocking. Hard plastics everywhere, door panels sound hollow when you knock on them, crappy seats,... There are rattles and squeaks everywhere, on a car that has only done 18000km!

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New review of the Focus ST in latest EVO Mag too (the one with the Veyron on the front).

Jethro Bovvers says in the final paragraph...

"I'm loath to criticise the ST because it really is an excellent package. There's ample performance, it looks great and the ride and general feel of the car at anything up to eight-tenths is spot-on. As a car to own, I think it would be a pleasure. However, just when you want it to throw off its sensible shoes and really go for it, the ST gets a little sulky, a little detached. The Golf GTI remains the benchmark."

Si.

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[ QUOTE ]

[ QUOTE ]

Utter bobbins and if you bought one it SAYS you were a mug.

Now I like the mk5 GTI but I hate it when it appear that a nice car has been bought for entirely the wrong reasons like the Audi TT.

[/ QUOTE ]

....I can't let you go unchallenged when writing stuff like that MAstra. Are you serious when you judge that someone has bought any car "entirely for the wrong reasons"? 'Wrong reasons' for you perhaps but what or who are you getting at here?

Otherwise I'm very much in agreement so far with SixDegrees on this subject.

[/ QUOTE ]

What I mean is that many GTis andTTs are bought purely for their image not because they are quick, good cars.

The GTI image helped the mk4 GTi sell well despite it's numerous fundamental flaws - I think VW only just rescued the GTi brand in time with the mk5 before it became a laughing stock - A good interior does NOT make a good car.

Red - You SO much remind me of myself when I got the R32.

It was the best car ever, nothing else could threaten it, it was simply my perfect car.

Now I've sold it, I realise there were problems and flaws but I'm still very glad I had one but have also seen the light outside VW.

Looks wise, at least the Astra and Focus are distinctive - The Golf looks very similar to a 307 and even a Honda Civic.

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[ QUOTE ]

What I mean is that many GTis andTTs are bought purely for their image not because they are quick, good cars

[/ QUOTE ]

Not sure I agree with that statement. Maybe the TT, but the GTi in my book isn't bought for just the badge. I think they are great cars. There are also flaws with every car built.

I think the Focus sadly falls under the Chav label now. Astra has been ruined for me personally, by the review TopGear gave it, showing it's (lack of) handling skills.

I've just bought WhatCar and they've reviewed both the new R32 and the new FocusST. Interestingly, they say the R32 is a great car, but, why pay more when the GTi is so good at much less money.

[ QUOTE ]

The Golf looks very similar to a 307 and even a Honda Civic.

[/ QUOTE ]

Maybe. But I've yet to mistaken a GTi for a 307/Civic! The GTi's are much more styled than the basic Golfs.

At the end of the day, I'd rather be in a Golf GTi. I'm fed up of Vauxhall's build quality and finish, and I've never liked Fords at all. I may change my view of the ST when I try one, but so far, their last ST was a letdown, and that remains my view sadly.

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MK4 Golf R32!

It was very highly rated by all the press and was once compared to a old 911 handling wise..... i still feel that the original MK4 R32 has the potential to become a cult classic in years to come....

VW probably didnt have much time to plan and produce the MK4 R32... its components were sourced from different "bins" which in my opinion was very good....

Exhaust = Sebring Austria (They also make SL55 AMG exhaust systems)

Suspension = Blistein and H&R (Blue and very good)

Brakes = VW Phaeton (Big and blue)

Engine = VW Phaeton (From bigger car)

Alloys = OZ Aristo`s

Tyres = Michelin

Seats = Koenig

Steering = Upgraded

Gearbox = Upgraded

My point being that a car is only alot of parts thrown together... in my opinion the above parts are pretty good and sourced well which made the original R32 a unique car.... its what made it go and handle so well....

Ive never driven the new GTi or any other of the new hot hatch breed but i still firmly think that the original R32 will be hard to beat..... for a start compare the press realeases and reviews in mags....

The original R32 was above the hot hatch leauge and fell between the top of the range hot hatch and the 4x4 jap cars...... stuck in the middle.

I for one will be considering buying another when funds permitting.......

I like rare cars which would rule out any of the new breed of cars..... the ford focus RS was another option i was thinking about as you dont see many of them about here but it being FWD put me off.....

Its 4WD for me all the way......

Riz FIREdevil.gifgrin.gif

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