Interesting comparo

Does this make the Ford Focus RS a “Germerican” version of Godzilla?

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Porsche Experience Center

While hanging out at our friends going away gathering this past Saturday, my content manager “Corey Washinton” ask if I want to take a “quick” ride in his Focus RS to check out the handling.  The car is noticeably more car than the ST, from the sound of the valved exhaust note in Sport mode, to the way you are thrust back in the Alcantara Recaro buckets with every blip of the throttle show a very different level of power and characteristics than my Focus ST offers.  The differences go further once you start taking corners and you feel the way the cars AWD system marries the chassis to the road.  Your level of confidence when pushing into corners is aided more by the sticky 19 inch Pilot Super Sport tires.  But this isn’t the review of the RS I planned on.  On our quick romp around the block we made a little detour…

We exited the 405 fwy and stopped off at the new Porsche Experience Center in Carson, CA.  Just pulling into the parking lot was enough to excite the average automotive fan.  It was like Cars-N-Coffee with the likes of 911’s, GT3’s, Cayman 718’s, Panamera’s, M3’s and of course the Focus RS.  We exited the car and soaked it all in as this is something of dreams.  

Walking up to the building your heart begins to flutter a bit as you grab the handle of the double glass doors.   A receptionist draped in Porsche gear greats you and ask if you are here for the Experience or visiting.   “Just visiting.”  Once we signed in as visitors we were handed visitor badges, which we “conveniently” forgot to return when we completed our visit and left the building.

Peering past the receptionist desk this is what awaits your senses.  Enjoy…

911 R

911 Targa 4GTS

918 Spyder

A mechanics bay so clean and pure it looks like you could eat off the floor

Porsche Design soundbar

917 restaurant on the 2nd floor

Notice the view of the track

A view of the track and lineup view from the 917 restaurant

A very nice place to spend a weekend.  Next time we’ll ditch the visitor status and shell out a few dollars for a couple of laps in the 911.

Of course I can’t leave out the RS.

Thanks Corey for the detour and help snapping pics.

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Ford Focus RS

I heard these were finally being delivered to dealerships so I took my son with me to check one out this weekend.  There are only 5000 being delivered for the initial release.  The stealership that I went to had only 1 and was not willing to let it out the door for a test drive unless I was willing to sit and negotiate a purchase. That wasn’t happening, especially with a $10k mark-up in price.  That’s $10,000 above the MSRP of the car!!!  It was boxed in on the showroom floor by two $80k Mustang GT350’s (20k mark-up on eack of them), so you know they weren’t willing to move one to let me spin this around the block for 10 minutes.

Now taking into consideration the heritage,  capabilities and performance aspect of this car and the fact that it’s European built, the 36k price tag is justified.  I mean a fully loaded front-wheel drive Honda Civic SI rated at 200hp (150hp and 2 less driven wheels than the RS) is going for a little over 30k.  I can’t wait to drive one.

The Stealth Grey is the color to have.

Enjoy

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These seats are a place I’d like to call home.   I felt very snug and comforted by its side bolstering.

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Photos by me and CW.

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Ford Focus RS

I saw this video and had to repost it.  Ford has just put the exclamation point on the hot-hatch and the entry-level sports car segment!  They wet our whistle with the tossable Fiesta ST and it’s almost 200hp and the Focus ST with its 252hp and its mixed reviews of being too tame and not as fun as it’s little brother.  So thank you Ford for finally delivering on your promise to bring America the Focus RS.

Ford is claiming at least 345hp and all-wheel drive matted to a 6-speed manual gearbox. These numbers trump both, the VW Golf R with it’s 296hp and the Rally-bred Subaru WRX STi delivering 305hp respectively (the Mitsubishi Evolution will no longer be in production by the end of this year). Neither of these are anything to sneeze at, and both tip the horsepower power per dollar scale very nicely.

More expensive sports cars fail to deliver the driving dynamic and smiles that these two cars deliver with their sub 40k price range.  I mean, why spend 60-100k when you can have the same if not more fun for 40k.  My eyes and ears are peeled for what a Ford will require for enthusiast to stake claim for their very own U.S. spec Focus RS. My guess is the high 30’s so as not to undercut the Mustang too much, although it is geared towards a different crowd.  #Hooniganism

Hmmm, I wonder what Mazda will deliver with the Speed3…stay tuned.
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Photo courtesy of Jalopnik.