Our Prayers Have Been Answered! 350HP Ford Focus RS Heading to U.S. Streets

The hot hatch market is about to get a whole lot hotter. U.S. enthusiasts have plenty of relatively powerful hatchbacks to choose from these days with entries ranging from the Mini Cooper S to the Fiat 500 Arbarth to the Ford Focus ST. The most powerful of those aforementioned vehicles is the Focus ST, which packs in a turbocharged 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinder engine that generates 252hp and 270 lb-ft of torque.

Needless to say, enthusiasts have flocked to the Focus ST in droves (and to its smaller, Fiesta ST sibling). But being that we auto enthusiasts are never satisfied when it comes to power, we simply weren’t content with just the Focus ST — we set our sights higher on the devilish Focus RS. Enthusiasts begged, pleaded, sent emails, and hounded Ford executives in person for years to bring the Focus RS to American shores.

2015 Ford Focus ST

They listened, and they’re going to deliver. The Focus RS will come to the United States. At a Thursday morning press conference Ford CEO Mark Fields confirmed the news and added, "We are transforming our approach to performance.”

Ford product chief Raj Nair also chimed in, stating, "The RS has a significant heritage and pedigree. We're changing Ford's performance business.”

The Focus RS gets in some laps around the 'Ring

Whereas the 3,200-lb Focus ST “only” has 252hp on tap, the next generation Focus RS is rumored to use a variant of the 2.3-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine that debuted in the aluminum-bodied 2015 F-150 and the 2015 Mustang. The engine puts out 310hp and 320 lb-ft of torque in the Mustang, but is expected to produce close to 350hp in the Focus RS.

350hp is a lot of power to channel through just the front wheels, so it’s also rumored that the next generation will come bearing all-wheel drive (watch out STI fans).

The Focus RS is expected to make its debut next month at the Detroit Auto Show, and we can’t wait to lay our eyes on it.

Ford Mustang Shelby GT350

In other Ford performance news, the company also announced that new global Ford Performance unit (which combines SVT, Team RS, and Ford Racing) will introduce 12 new performance vehicles by the year 2020. By pooling the talents of previously separate performance units under one umbrella, we’re expecting to see even more kickass automobiles in the coming years in addition to existing performance models like the recently unveiled Mustang Shelby GT350, the F-150 Raptor, and the aforementioned RS and ST models.