Elevate your Heart Rate.

The beaming—potentially visible from space—Tangerine Scream Ford Focus ST is one photogenic little scamp, I murmur to myself upon delivery. The color alone causes the hairs on my neck to rise, but it’s the driving experience that elevates the heart rate. A hatchback of the sports car variety, the Focus ST can surprise even the most heavy-footed enthusiast.

There’s a reason why some of the top rally car drivers in the world use the Ford Focus as their base vehicle. Being sporty and capable with a well-tuned chassis is the main reason, but under homologation rules, the car must be sold in certain capacities to make it eligible. Selling a worthwhile amount of cars means that it must contain certain qualities, and attract scores of buyers willing to shell out a premium for a compact car. The Focus ST hits the mark with style, plenty of power, first-rate amenities, and impressive driving performance with a portfolio that must appeal to customers the world over.

Starting with a sophisticated and powerful 252 horsepower motor that could be more at home in an entry-level luxury car, the 2.0-liter engine makes proper and efficient use of the turbocharger that forces compressed air into the engine. Not only does the turbo provide copious amounts of torque with 270 lb.-ft @2,500rpm, but it also doesn’t fall flat on its face at higher revs.

Ford has managed to make a small motor perform as if it has bigger displacement, while still maintaining a power-plant that can sip fuel sedately, or wake you up with a hatchback that can surprise more than a few motorists.




Perception tends to be a key influence when purchasing any vehicle.

 Regardless if you know it or not, you want to be seen in something with style, flair, or sprezzatura. You’re buying a vehicle because of the way it makes you feel, looks and what it does to your emotions every time you press the ignition button. The progress of Ford has been an explosive force on the buying scene in the past few years. They are making the $450,000 Ford GT again, bringing supercar ambitions to lovers of Americana; and they’re rehashing the Focus RS (the ST’s bigger, more powerful, more capable brother). Go down the product lineup and you have cars that appeal to consumers of multiple brackets of affordability from the low thirties to six-figures.

The ST is not luxurious in the traditional sense, because it’s not supposed to be. It’s an amenity ridden, street brawler with luxurious undertones. There is a roster of first class appointments with the ST that you don’t expect to find, but instead, are there in an amazement of value.

Real carbon fiber on the ST3 package litters the cabin in places that are thoughtful, but not overdone. Auto-up (and down) windows—a feature that most luxury cars three times the price don’t come equipped with—is standard on the ST. The optional Recaro bucket seats in our test car with the ST2 package are sublime for high G-force cornering. Ford’s Sync 3 is finally something that works as expected.





This is all a bonus until you get to the nuts and bolts of what the Focus ST is. It’s a performance car wrapped in an economy sedan.

 Like a scallop wrapped in bacon, you’re getting the salty with the sweet; the oil and vinegar; the sedate and the satanic.

The Focus ST won’t slot in with everyone’s lifestyle, but that’s the beauty of it. You’ll finder bolsters that don’t appease the well fed, and stiff front and rear independent suspension that makes you clearly understand what’s beneath you. However, you’ll find Torque Vectoring Control front-wheel drive that follows your beck and call and makes the ST claw and fight its way around corners; defeating the laws of physics in some cases, but not all. The rear will rotate to follow, but power can overwhelm. You learn to be judicious with throttle, sometimes requiring the finesse of a funambulist to extract the correct amount of power to grip ratio.

 the ST lies in a platform that truly begs to be driven hard—follow the road at your will and do as you please because this Focus is a sadist in its ability to take abuse and ask for more. And though our test car was fully optioned out at a still reasonable $31k, the base model starts below $25k for a sports car that will surprise most everyone who steps foot inside; and whoever challenges you at the stoplight. Ford Focus ST

Photography and Story By Michael Crenshaw

The Sedate and the Satanic- The Ford Focus ST



Electric MINI Cooper SE

All New

Maserati MC20

Re-imagining The Supercar

Lucid Air

From Lucid Motors

Audi SQ7

Track-ready SQ7 SUV

Goodwood Ghost

Minimalism At It's Best

Lincoln Aviator

Bold In Concept

Chevy Tahoe

High Country

Dawn Silver Bullet

Dawn Silver Bullet By Rolls-Royce

Bentley Continental GT

V8 Convertible First Edition

Twilight Purple Cullinan

A Bespoke Rolls-Royce

Shelby GT500

760hp of controlled chaos

Kia K5

Decisions Decisions

Mercedes-AMG G 63

reinvented icon

Gladiator Mojave

By Jeep

Cadillac LYRIQ

Meet The Future

Dark Shadow Limited Edition X7

Elusive 7-Passenger SAV

Chevrolet Trailblazer


Range Rover Road Trip

To Chautauqua Lake

Hyundai Palisade Calligraphy

Great Got Better

Nissan Ariya

Nissan's New Electric Crossover

2021 Ford Bronco

True Freedom To Explore

Jaguar XE

A sport sedan class in true Jaguar fashion

New VW Tiguan

World Premiere

Buick Encore GX

Buick Encore GX

Jaguar E-Pace

The New Bentayga

By Bentley

Audi Q8 Aggressive In Style

Lamborghini SCV12

Track Spotted

BMW 2 Series Gran Coupe

The First Ever

2021 Lexus IS

World Premiere

Continental GT V8

First Edition

Navigator Monochromatic

A focused design

John Cooper Works Countryman

MINI Style

The Aston Martin DB11 Volante

Exceptional Craftsmanship

2021 BMW 4 Series Coupe

All New

Ford Mustang Mach 1

Limited-Edition Pinnacle Of Style

Lexus LC500

Ford Edge ST-Line

all-new 2020

The Bentley Mulliner Bacalar

The Fantasy Is Real

BMW Competition M8 Gran Coupe

newest edition

GR Supra

sports car performance

From The House Of Rolls-Royce

Next Level Of Dawn

Huracán EVO RWD Spyder

Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition

Luxuriously Fast

Alfa Romeo Giulia GTA

Is It Coming To The US?

Lotus Evija

Dream Catcher

All-New Genesis G80

Digital World Premiere

BMW X5 M Competition

A Racecar Disguised As An SUV

Polestar 2 Electric Vehicle

Production Begins

Sonata Hybrid

by Hyundai

Hyundai's All-New Elantra

Lower, Longer and Wider

Volvo XC90 Hybrid T8 Inscription

power without compromise

Genesis G90

Human-Centered Luxury

Aston Martin V12 Speedster

Big Engine, Broad Shoulders

Porsche Taycan

Remember the name Taycan

2021 Cadillac Escalade

Iconic Luxury

Rolls-Royce Dawn Black Badge

Rolls-Royce Dawn Black Badge

Lincoln Corsair

Elegance Meets Performance

Audi S8

Confident Elegance

Ford GT Liquid Carbon

A Manufacturing Marvel