The mighty Ford Focus ST has been on North American shores for a couple of years now, up to that point it was only available in Europe. When it was originally introduced in Canada, we spent a week reviewing the 2013 Ford Focus ST, you can check out that review for our thoughts on the car. For 2015, the car has been updated a bit and we will talk about the updates here, rather than repeat our whole driving experience from two years ago.
I had a lot of fun in the Focus ST when I drove around in it for a week, back in 2013. The year after that I had the 2014 Fiesta ST for a week and I thought I liked the Fiesta more than the Focus. The only problem was, I reviewed the two cars about a year apart, so I couldn’t really compare the two objectively. Luckily, this year I reviewed the 2015 Fiesta ST and the 2015 Focus ST a week apart…
I still consider the Fiesta ST to be one of my favorite cars, it’s a very nimble and fun car. But driving the two cars almost back to back, I think I prefer the Focus ST, as it’s more of a daily driver that can also be a track car. The Fiesta ST is more fun but it can get a little tiring because of its harder suspension set up. I’d say the Fiesta ST was the car for me when I was in my 20’s and the Focus ST is the car for me now that I’m in my 30’s.
With that out of the way, now let’s focus on the Focus ST. In Canada, the 2015 Ford Focus ST has a starting price of $29,999, before any dealer incentives. Our review car had a price of $33,349 plus $1,565 for destination and PDI. The car came with a few options like the Technology Package for $1,250, which consists of MyFord Touch, Sirius satellite radio, 10 speakers, and dual zone climate control. $800 for Navigation, $600 for 18” premium painted wheels, and $500 for the black stripes on the hood and the roof. Comparing prices to the 2013 model, the base price has gone up by $2,480 but you do get an updated car, details below.
The 2015/2016 Ford Focus ST looks very similar to the car we reviewed in 2013, but upon closer inspection, there are a few changes on the exterior, interior, and under all the metal. The exterior enhancements include a new lower section of the front bumper, the bottom area is a bit bigger and feature rectangular-type of fog lights instead of round fog lights. The new front bumper gives the Focus ST a more sportier look, in my opinion. The rear bumper has also been reworked and the lower section of the bumper now connects both sides of the bumper with the dual-exhaust tips in the middle. The Focus ST also comes with LED signature lights and HID headlights.
Ford Focus ST Interior Photo Gallery
The interior also gets minor updates with the first noticeable change being the flat-bottom steering wheel, which is a must for any hot-hatch/performance car. Most of the interior stays the same, the changes are made to the lower part of the center stack, which now features an improved design for the HVAC controls, a small storage area below those controls for cell phone, and lower placement of the handbrake lever. I like the changes on the interior but I do have a minor problem with the placement of the handbrake, it has been moved out of the way (which is normally a good thing), but I kept forgetting to release the handbrake lever after getting back in the car. The lever is too low and it’s hard to see whether the handbrake has been applied or is in the off (lower) position.
Other than that, the interior works really well and the Focus ST still comes with those beautifully supportive Recaro bucket seats, which I was a big fan of in the Focus ST we reviewed last time. These seats are perfectly sized for my body, however, they might be tight for people with a bit of weight or broader shoulders.
Other improvements to the Focus ST include improved steering, which gives the driver more feedback. I had complained about the lack of feedback from the steering wheel in my first review, the steering feedback has improved a bit but it still feels artificial. The suspension has also been improved with all-new front springs and sportier shock absorber tuning front and rear to deliver even sharper dynamic performance.
On the performance front, the 2015 Ford Focus ST is still powered by the same turbocharged 2.0 liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine, which produces 252 horsepower at 5,500 rpm and 270 pound-feet of torque at 2,500 rpm; these figures are achieved using 93 octane gasoline. But fear not, the Focus ST can run perfectly well on regular gas, you might lose a few horsepower but it isn’t as sharp of a decline as one would expect, considering the price difference between 93 and 87 octane gasoline in Canada. Power is sent to the front wheels via a 6-speed, smooth shifting, manual transmission, which is still the only transmission offered.
The Ford Focus ST is still the same great driving car it was a couple of years ago, I had a great time driving this hot-hatch for week. It can be a sensible car with a decent amount of space and is usable for daily driving and can be pretty good on gas, but it can also turn into a sports car, giving you lots of power and performance, of course you won’t get the best fuel economy driving like this but then again, you don’t buy an ST to get good gas mileage, if you want that you can get a regular Ford Focus.
Speaking of fuel economy, according to Ford’s website, the 2015 Ford Focus ST should consume 10.2 L/100 km in city driving, 7.3 L/100 km on the highway, and 8.9 L/100 km on the combined cycle. We were able to get pretty close to the claimed numbers, averaging 9.1 L/100 km in mixed city/highway driving (75/25 city/highway), based on the on-board computer.
I have been a big fan of Ford’s ST vehicles and the Focus ST is no exception, this is a great little package that ticks a lot of the boxes off on a list of things I look for in a car. It isn’t a very big car but it comes with lots of room for passengers and cargo, it can be fuel efficient if driven in a gentlemanly way and it can be a pretty lethal track weapon if you know what you’re doing. I’ve had a blast all four times reviewing the Fiesta and Focus ST cars, I can’t wait to get my hands on the Focus RS, which should be coming soon. With 340+ horsepower and AWD, that car will be a hoot to drive. For more information visit ford.ca.