Still, fans will have much to look forward to. The new car – the 30th vehicle to wear the Rallye Sport moniker since it was introduced in 1968 – will feature all-wheel drive, for starters. It’ll be powered by a 2.3 litre EcoBoost engine, the same as found in the new S550 Mustang, but reworked for this application with a comprehensive package of design changes. It’ll be mated to a six-speed manual transmission.
No 350 hp as initially thought or the 330 hp as later rumoured, but power is still in excess of a decent 320 PS. Additions and changes include a new low-inertia, twin-scroll turbo with a larger compressor to deliver significantly increased air flow as well as a larger intercooler to maximise charge density. The car also gets improved cooling, aided by a larger radiator (the biggest ever stuffed into a Focus, so it goes) and improved materials for the cylinder head/block as well as the head gasket.
Also on, a less restrictive, newly designed intake to offer improved engine breathing and a large-bore high performance exhaust system, the latter featuring an electronically-controlled valve in the tailpipe to optimise the balance of back pressure and noise output, complete with distinctive burbles, pops and crackles. Looks like the Mercedes-Benz A 45 AMG is set to have a raucous competitor in the output sound stakes.