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gavriil 05-20-2003 05:28 PM

Ford: Focus News
Yes, that’s the underside of a Focus. There is so much space for the driveshaft, ATI believes this is no coincidence.

(18:19:38 May 20, 2003)
From Nose to Tail
ATI's Focus strikes like a Cobra: Fast and Hard


(Photos by Alvin Haas)

DESPITE A SHARED LOVE affair with “more power,” there has always been some animosity between muscle car enthusiasts and the sport compact tuner crowd. Even though many pocket rockets thrashed V8s on the road and at the track, their tuners would inevitably hear the argument: “There’s no replacement for displacement.” So here’s a replacement with displacement.

Accurate Technologies Inc., based in Wixom, Michigan, took delivery of a Focus SVT and started asking the “more power” question. A stock SVT is an entertaining package with a high-compression 2.0-liter inline four with 170 hp and 145 lb-ft of torque.

(248) 848-9200

That’s great for the class but sedate even when compared to the base V8-powered, 260-hp and 302-lb-ft Mustang GT. ATI sales manager Richard George said exceeding those figures would stretch the four-banger’s limit. The company built one Focus with a supercharger, but ATI also wanted something that would be more special.

Accurate Technologies does a lot of Ford work, so the natural thing to do was swap in Ford’s most powerful engine: the SVT Mustang Cobra’s 390-hp, 390-lb-ft, supercharged 4.6-liter V8.

Problem solved—and then some. The result is called the Terminator Focus.

With custom stainless-steel headers, a larger single-blade throttle body and a smaller pulley on the supercharger (to increase boost pressure), George says this V8 now boasts upward of 500 hp and 500 lb-ft. Coupled with a curb weight of about 3200 pounds, it doesn’t take an engineer to put two and two together and figure out what that does for Focus performance.

This strategic move also silences another frequent criticism of pocket rockets: that true sports cars are rear-wheel drive. Yes, this baby lights it up out back. And if you’re consoling your big block by thinking this is just another “project” car, think again because ATI offers this Frankenstein transformation to the public, along with a two-year/24,000-mile warranty.

The 4.6 fits snugly in the engine bay without any compromise to the firewall (and the stock hood still slams shut), so the only significant modifications necessary were to spread the suspension strut tower mounts outward a little and then widen the front of the exhaust tunnel to 18 inches to house the tail of the Cobra’s T-56 transmission. The driveshaft installs cleanly through the existing exhaust tunnel, which is so spacious that George believes Ford already had plans brewing to power the rear axle in an all-wheel-drive model.

ATI also beefed up the suspension with a racing-style tubular K-member, adjustable struts and springs, and a Cobra antiroll bar and steering rack up front. In back, the Terminator gets adjustable shocks and the Cobra independent rear suspension, all in an
effort to maintain the Cobra’s handling geometry. Taking no chances with the increased power, the subframe has been reinforced and deceleration chores are delegated to Cobra brakes and calipers with Performance Friction brake pads, enhanced with driver-adjustable brake bias.

Turn the key and the familiar Mustang burble brings the Terminator to life. As soon as we graced open roads, we drove cautiously, short-shifting the six-speed into second and third. Once in third we felt confident that it would be safe to just plant the throttle on the floor—wrong.

Instantly the Terminator leapt forward with the front hopping from the thrust, the rear tires spinning for 25 feet and the rear wagging all the way as we wrestled with the steering wheel.

That shouldn’t have come as a surprise, thinking about the Viper-like power. Perhaps our perception lapsed, because aside from the 18-inch rims, the appearance is all stock SVT Focus, complete with a/c, stereo and factory gauges. The only hint of the massive power is the super-wide rear 295/30R-18 Michelin Pilots. It’s a classic wolf in sheep’s clothing, with little to give away the power that lurks beneath.

George estimates that, as equipped, this baby will tackle the quarter-mile in high 11s. There’s so much power that, when we lined it up for a photo, he cautioned, “If you want to do a burnout, use second gear. It’s much easier.”

Surprisingly, the SVT Cobra’s V8 fits snugly in the Focus engine bay, transforming it into a rear-wheel Viper fighter.

So we did and it was like child’s play. The power caused the rear to pivot violently and we had to aggressively countersteer to keep it from snapping around. When we got sick of inhaling burnt rubber, we drove around trying to envision this beast as a daily driver.

Apart from a clutch stiffer even than that on the SVT Cobra and the firm ride that you’d expect from a tuner car, you could make runs to the grocery store. Even though the battery is relocated to the trunk, ATI preserved all the Focus utility by fabricating another trunk floor—although it does have a tad less space. The rear seats still fold down and the performance suspension all bolts into the existing tire wells. Just keep shifts around 3000 rpm and things are fairly civilized.

Most of the Focus’ neutral handling is intact, but take a tight right-hander with a decent dose of throttle—like we did—and the rear will step out in no time. Despite the extra front weight, steering is extremely quick and it is easily controlled. The ample torque also allows for further throttle manipulation. Just don’t open it too much
or the laws of physics will take precedence.

Owning this rear-wheel-drive sleeper of a Focus would certainly be a blast—from drifting through corners to sending stoplight shivers down the spines of both muscle and sport compact car drivers. But, as in other areas of life, there is a big price to be paid for extreme individuality. The fully souped Terminator Focus tested here costs
$69,500, plus the donor Focus.

A huge burn in the pocket, but you could do worse searching to squeeze the same output from the stock engine. If you already own a SVT Focus (or find a used one), you could probably sell off the SVT engine, transmission, suspension, rims and tires to some ZX3 driver and recoup some of that cost.

However, consider this in the words of a popular TV commercial: Custom 18-inch HRE rims, $4,500; Eibach springs and performance suspension, $5,200; SVT Mustang powertrain swap, $35,000; pulling into a weekend import tuner car meet, dropping the clutch, mashing the throttle and seeing all those puzzled faces—priceless.

mantis23 05-20-2003 06:11 PM

even though its a focus, you've gotta give 'em credit for actually offering a beast like this under warranty.

if a had cash coming outta my ass, I'd get one just to piss people off.

gavriil 05-20-2003 06:32 PM

I know for sure that the space of the driveshaft is no coincidence. We WILL see an AWD Focus from Ford soon. Not sure if the USA will get it, but Europe will for sure get it. They need an offering to go against the WRX and EVO. An AWD turbocharged Focus will be Ford's answer to the above 2, as well as the SRT-4 from Chrysler.

gavriil 05-20-2003 06:34 PM

Originally posted by mantis23
even though its a focus, you've gotta give 'em credit for actually offering a beast like this under warranty.


Python2121 05-20-2003 08:52 PM

gavril, your right, they are gonna need to compete with the wrx and evo.

to bad we never get the good cars :(

ItalianStallion 05-20-2003 08:53 PM

hmm id hit it and fuck with people. itd be funny shit and youd get major respect from people focus' never get any from. imagine pulling up to some cocky 350Z and layin it down on him.....that would be priceless

bkknight369 05-20-2003 10:03 PM

Originally posted by ItalianStallion
hmm id hit it and fuck with people. itd be funny shit and youd get major respect from people focus' never get any from. imagine pulling up to some cocky 350Z and layin it down on him.....that would be priceless
...and cobras...and vipers...:D

gavriil 05-20-2003 10:07 PM

Originally posted by Python2121
gavril, your right, they are gonna need to compete with the wrx and evo.

to bad we never get the good cars :(

We might get it. Europe already got the Focus RS (210 HP FWD). Accelerates as fast as an auto tranny CLS.

agisd 05-21-2003 10:25 AM

This is a project car. There is no need for a RWD V8 Focus (not in this century, at least). Focus RS is a modded Focus 2.0 offered for sale in Europe in limited quantities because there are many rally applications for a turbocharged hatchback with a 2.0lt engine over there.

Btw, there is a similar car in Europe (currently in production). It is the Renault Clio V6. Basically, you get a popular hatchback, delete the rear seats, put a 250 HP V6 in the middle and drive the rear wheels. The result is a small monster. Again, there are some rally applications for this car but in any case you are better off with a Z350 and a turbocharger.

gavriil 05-21-2003 12:22 PM

Originally posted by agisd
This is a project car. There is no need for a RWD V8 Focus (not in this century, at least). Focus RS is a modded Focus 2.0 offered for sale in Europe in limited quantities because there are many rally applications for a supercharged hatchback with a 2.0lt engine over there.

Btw, there is a similar car in Europe (currently in production). It is the Renault Clio V6. Basically, you get a popular hatchback, delete the rear seats, put a 250 HP V6 in the middle and drive the rear wheels. The result is a small monster. Again, there are some rally applications for this car but in any case you are better off with a Z350 and a turbocharger.

Agi calling it a project car, you make it sound like a concept car. A car that cannot be bought, that is. This is a car people can buy. Yes in limited fashion, but yet, it's sold by someone.

Also, the Focus RS is turbocharged not supercharged as fas as I can remember.

I had posted spy photos of an AWD turbo Focus testing in the USA, a long time ago. I would not be surprised if we get it in the next 9-12 months.

Finally, I was reading about the Clio V6 on the May issue of 4 Troxoi and it sounds like they were not very impressed actually. The steering and suspension were not meeting expectations and were worse than the competition. Even the engine was suffering of low end torque issues. In other words, not as special as others. On the hand, they were RAVING about the Focus RS. Other mags were raving about the RS as well.

Zapata 05-21-2003 01:10 PM

35k for a ford focus? Don't think so...................

gavriil 05-21-2003 01:34 PM

Originally posted by Zapata
35k for a ford focus? Don't think so...................
An 11 second RWD, warranteed Focus. :)

Zapata 05-21-2003 02:52 PM

Originally posted by gavriil
An 11 second RWD, warranteed Focus. :)
11sec is nice and it has it's appeal but it's still a ford and it's still a focus. For other cars you can say 35k is worth it becaue the chasis has been developed. 35k for 350z is worth it because i know the chasis has been developed with all out performance. The focus is just another econobox. Not knocking it, it's fantastic and cool that it is even possible.

gavriil 08-25-2003 06:02 PM

Ford Focus Euro-Spec News **Turbo Focus ST Previewed (page 6)**

AcuraFan 08-25-2003 06:10 PM

That looks great...our little baby is growing up. :D

Zapata 08-25-2003 06:26 PM


cusdaddy 08-25-2003 06:33 PM

Looks pretty good to me

gavriil 08-25-2003 06:38 PM

And it's a 4 door :)

danny25 08-25-2003 06:47 PM

the front looks great, like the Ford Mondeo (i think that's what it's called)

chef chris 08-25-2003 07:18 PM

Looks ok...

zeroday 08-25-2003 07:38 PM

it is what it is

farberstyle 08-25-2003 07:48 PM

looks good compared to what it is

gdubb 08-25-2003 11:53 PM

I like it for a ficus I mean focus. It looks really european to me

Red Nj-s 08-26-2003 07:43 PM

I kinda like it. Looks a little weak? Kinda like it will shatter if u crash it. I like a more solid look.

Python2121 08-26-2003 07:44 PM

better then whats out now

bkknight369 08-27-2003 01:16 AM

rear looks like the is300 sportscross

matteichenfels 08-30-2003 07:08 PM


xrunner86x 08-30-2003 07:34 PM

in the second angle picture it looks like they combined the focus and the golf. an improvement, but it's still a ford.

ItalianStallion 08-30-2003 09:29 PM

looks ok, they just need to bring over the RS and we'll be set.

gavriil 09-08-2003 02:12 PM

Spy Shots: 2005 Ford Focus

Ford is preparing the launch of the second-generation Focus. Here are photos showing a prototype of the five-door hatchback, bundled up in white plastic to conceal the car’s final shape.

The forthcoming second generation Focus will spawn the replacement for the world’s best-selling car from 2004 on (hatchback, sedan, wagon). It was expected to make its debut at this fall Frankfurt Motor Show, simultaneously with the new VW Golf 5 and the new Opel Astra. However, according to rumours, this could be delayed, and the new Focus would get into the showrooms in autumn 2004 only.

Ford will offer the Focus again as different body variants, as three- and five-door hatchback, a four-door sedan, and a station wagon. The sportier versions and possibly a coupe are expected to come on the market later.

With the new Focus the company is striving for better quality. It is a completely new development, and the platform will also be used by Volvo and Mazda. Power comes among others from a brand new engine, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder delivering 150 hp.

Most significant: the Focus has grown dramatically in overall length, which can be seen quite well on the side-view photos of the prototype. Wheelbase is 103.9 inches and overall length is 171.3 inches, thus providing considerably more space in the passenger compartment. The prototype also reveals five wheel bolts instead of the four on the current model. The Focus will be offered with four-wheel disc brakes. Other safety features will include dual-stage front airbags, side curtains and seat-mounted front side airbags.

There is word that this Focus will not make the crossing into North America — the U.S. market may instead keep the current Focus around for a few years until a new platform is developed. Stay tuned.

Python2121 09-08-2003 03:14 PM

those rimms are hot, i think i might pick some up


bkknight369 09-08-2003 07:12 PM

looks like a mini Aztec...hopefully thats just the effect of the covering

pimpscls 09-08-2003 08:50 PM

mini aztec hopefully the svt is nicer

acur8ly 09-09-2003 09:02 AM

still as ugly as shi*

gavriil 09-24-2003 09:50 AM

Ford needs diesel Focus for U.S., COO Scheele says
Ford needs diesel Focus for U.S., COO Scheele says

By AMY WILSON | Automotive News

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. - Ford Motor Co. is closer to introducing a diesel-powered Ford Focus in North America.

"We need to develop and bring to market a diesel in the Focus," Ford COO Nick Scheele said at a press event here. "It probably won't be a huge volume, but we just need to do it and get it out there."

Scheele said the diesel Focus, already sold in Europe, isn't locked into the North American product cycle yet. But his statements suggest that Ford is closer than ever to confirming a diesel-powered car for this market.

Ford has been studying the diesel Focus for applications in North America for a couple of years.

This year, Ford assigned more than 50 of its top diesel engineers to a new North American diesel team in Dearborn, Mich. In contrast to previous assignments involving only pickup engines, the task for this team is to work on diesel engines for cars, SUVs and pickups.

Ford sells a North American diesel only in its F-series Super Duty pickups, Excursion SUV and Econoline van.

A likely target date for the diesel Focus is the 2007 model, when low-sulfur diesel fuel is set to be available nationwide.

"We can't bring it before we've got low-sulfur fuel," Scheele said.

In the fall of 2006, the sulfur content in diesel will drop from its current 300 parts per million to about 15 ppm, which will reduce soot and other emissions.

But Ford could follow DaimlerChrysler's lead and roll out more diesel vehicles to test market acceptance. Jeep will introduce a diesel-powered Liberty SUV next year, while Mercedes-Benz will offer a diesel engine in the E-class sedan.

Both models are certified to meet emissions standards but will need significant emissions system modifications by 2007 if they are to remain on the market.

The EPA has certified four diesel engines - two from Volkswagen AG, one from Toyota Motor Corp. and one from DaimlerChrysler - as being able to meet tougher diesel regulations that go into effect in 2007.

A diesel-powered Focus likely would cost between $2,000 and $3,000 more than the gasoline-powered version, which starts at $13,385 including the destination charge.

The diesel powertrain adds sophisticated fuel injection and exhaust systems and a turbocharger.

Ford officials have said they wouldn't introduce a diesel car in North America unless they can make money on it.

Staff Reporter Richard Truett contributed to this report

gavriil 10-16-2003 10:13 PM

Spy Video of next gen Ford Focus - It also gets AWD and semi-auto tranny
Spy Video here:

It's the car that aims to keep Ford at the very top of the sales charts and lead the troubled manufacturer back to profitability. Arguably the most important new vehicle for the make, the next Focus isn't due on sale until 2004. But that hasn't stopped us getting the world's first pictures showing the car as it will appear in the showrooms.

The Focus clearly has it all to do and, taking styling cues from the C-MAX mini-MFV, we reckon the Ford is off to a promising start. The mature look of the family favourite also has the feel of the recently facelifted Mondeo. It's less daring than the new edge-inspired model it replaces, and Ford has said in the past that it's certain the conservative makeover will improve the car's standing among more affluent buyers.

The firm also points out there will be many more Focus variants to choose from than before. As well as the C-MAX, the range will include three- and five-door editions. There's even talk of a performance coupe. Ford insiders are promising the car will also set new standards of space and refinement in a class it already dominates. But that might not be enough. From what we have seen, the car will have a far bigger fight on its hands from rivals than ever before.

Crucially, the Focus is going to have to play catch up with these challengers. The new Golf, Astra and Mazda 3 have all been unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Yet the Ford isn't due to make its debut for another year. So how does the blue oval intend to keep its hatch ahead of the pack?

Company sources claim a mix of internal design, engineering and driveability will hold the key. Based on the all-new C1 platform, the new model will be longer and wider than before to give class-leading levels of interior space. On the basis of the C-MAX's crash protection, safety standards are tipped to be first-rate. The Focus is equipped with Ford's Intelligent Protection System, and will be aiming for a five-star Euro NCAP rating.

Using many of the ideas developed for the Mondeo, it should also be easy to service and repair, keeping running costs low. Services such as sat-nav and live traffic information will also be offered for the first time, in response to the hi-tech kit fitted to the new Golf.

The engine range will also add a wide appeal, Entry-level models will be powered by an updated 1.6-litre Duratec, which has a proven history in the current car. However, the newcomer will debut 1.6 and 1.8-litre direct-injection petrol units offering variable valve timing, as well as fresh 1.6 and 2.0-litre TDCi oil-burners.

At launch, the larger capacity diesel will be the most powerful engine available, with an impressive 135-HP and 300Nm of torque. This unit is likely to use clever electronics to reduce turbo lag. And with such a high output available, Ford is expected to supplement an uprated ESP system with four-wheel drive. Aimed at quality rivals such as the 4Motion Golf, this model is being secretly developed with the help of Bosch.

Three gearboxes will also be offered. The first is a conventional manual with six speeds. A new automatic is also expected, but most exciting of all is a fresh semi-automatic transmission similar to Audi's excellent new Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG). Capable of changing ratios in the blink of an eye using paddles mounted behind the steering wheel, the system is expected to help maintain the Focus's reputation as the best driver's car in its class.

gavriil 10-16-2003 10:15 PM

The front lights remind me those from the new Audi A3.

gavriil 11-04-2003 06:47 AM

Ford Focus RS8 w/ Cammer engine

gavriil 11-04-2003 06:49 AM

Ford Focus Performance

SpeedyV6 11-04-2003 07:20 AM

That grey plastic looks butt ugly. It's amazing how much better the car looks when that gray trim is painted. The same goes for the Honda Element, Pontiac Aztec, and the Chevy Avalanche.

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