emodspitfire
emodspitfire Reader
5/11/14 1:37 p.m.

Spent a couple of hours spectating at the local AutoX yesterday.

There were several Focus ST's near the top of G Street. (2013/2014 models.)

I didn't get a chance to see them run, but the times looked solid.

Does anyone have any experience with these on course? As a DD?

Thanks,

Rog

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
5/11/14 2:51 p.m.

Interested...

1966stang
1966stang Reader
5/11/14 3:33 p.m.

Interested as well. I have driven them on the street and liked them.

Jerry
Jerry Dork
5/11/14 4:34 p.m.

Few weeks ago I spent a few hours photographing our event & got a chance to talk to a first-timer driving an ST. He looked pretty good out there, with practice I think he'll be a contender. Seemed like a nice ride.

Bababooey
Bababooey Reader
5/11/14 5:38 p.m.

I just test drove one the other day with plans on using it for work/track days. I wound up buying more parts for my SVT.

It's a very good car, if you haven't driven an SVT. The engine is smooth and has TONS of power with zero turbo lag. On the downside, it's very quiet and the computer said my MPG's were in the mid 20's. It handled great, but the steering felt numb, especially in high speed corners...not good when your "home track" is Watkins Glen. I could never feel anything through the wheel and it still had lots of torque steer. Brakes are amazing, with no downside here. Interior is made with decent materials for its price, but the radio is overly complicated. I felt like Neo hacking the matrix and I was just changing a station. The rear hatch is very small due to a full size (WIDE)spare. It takes about 10in of vertical space out of it. The recaros are great unless you have linebacker shoulders like me. The shoulder bolsters push them forward which becomes uncomfortable. Great other than that but I couldn't get comfortable.

Again not a bad car until I compare it to the SVT. It feels more raw. I can feel AND hear the engine. I can feel the tires through the wheel. I can feel the road through the seat. The shifter is notchy and firm. The radio and HVAC are simple. When I'm driving it fast, the car is telling me things that the ST doesn't. So while it may be "better" in every way, for that, I couldn't buy a new one.

FWIW, I've been looking for a hatch/wagon/hell I'll settle for a small SUV for the past few months. I just can't find one that feels right at any price.

Just an FYI, prepare for massive depreciation with these things. I drove one with every option that had 12k. Asking price was $21500 for what was about a $30k car not even a year ago. I'm assuming it had close to $13k in depreciation the first year.

iceracer
iceracer PowerDork
5/11/14 6:25 p.m.

You need to try the Fist aka Fiesta ST.

irish44j
irish44j PowerDork
5/11/14 7:19 p.m.

I have nothing useful to add, but want to follow this thread so feel obligated to post something. And now I have "ain't nuthin but a G thing" stuck in my head....

1966stang
1966stang Reader
5/11/14 8:15 p.m.

Methinks a GTI would make a better daily, and something cheap and hoonable would make a better auto x car.

Fobroader
Fobroader Reader
5/12/14 12:36 a.m.

In reply to 1966stang:

Dont forget RWD.....

1966stang
1966stang Reader
5/12/14 5:20 a.m.

Which is why my Miata is so much more fun than my R53 MINI.

DaveEstey
DaveEstey UberDork
5/12/14 7:39 a.m.

One of our instructors races one. It's very competent.

rotard
rotard Dork
5/12/14 8:31 a.m.

Mine is very competent and makes an excellent daily driver. I have an ST1 without a sunroof. You can also get a base Focus ST for the price of the Fiesta ST, so I wouldn't even bother with them. I also like the fact that you can plug in a Cobb Access Port and get a great increase in power for $500. It makes a great single car.

I think the depreciation is more due to the fact that you can get an ST1 (base) for $21-22k pretty easily. The ST3 was going for around $25k when I was looking.

I'd say that Ford has definitely taken a step in the right direction with improving the quality of the Focus. It has most of the quality feel of a GTi with a dallop of boy racer from an MS3.

1966stang
1966stang Reader
5/12/14 9:04 a.m.

It does make the MS3 obsolete, IMHO, as it is a much nicer car.

Will
Will SuperDork
5/12/14 9:16 a.m.

We've had one local guy do quite well in one. Not sure how well it would do nationally, but if local is all you care about, go for it.

getfast
getfast Reader
5/12/14 11:22 a.m.
rotard wrote: Mine is very competent and makes an excellent daily driver. I have an ST1 without a sunroof. You can also get a base Focus ST for the price of the Fiesta ST, so I wouldn't even bother with them. I also like the fact that you can plug in a Cobb Access Port and get a great increase in power for $500. It makes a great single car. I think the depreciation is more due to the fact that you can get an ST1 (base) for $21-22k pretty easily. The ST3 was going for around $25k when I was looking. I'd say that Ford has definitely taken a step in the right direction with improving the quality of the Focus. It has most of the quality feel of a GTi with a dallop of boy racer from an MS3.

I had a '12 GTI (four door, no options, three pedals) & have a '14 FoST now (four door, no options, three pedals.) This FoST was $21k brand new before state taxes - the potential discounts from new are massive, so the resale will be less. Of course it'll be worse for the more highly optioned cars, but that's always the case. Guess I'll worry about it in a year or two when the next hot hatch comes along.

GTI had nicer interior, better mpg's, better shifter, better base stereo, better fit & finish. FoST has better everything else, especially power/torque (mine put down 242/280 SAE vs 196/207 for the GTI... same local Dynojet.) FoST is stiffer, more grip/stickier tires, much less understeer, much more lift-throttle oversteer, better brakes, quicker steering, overall much more hilarious to drive fast. GTI was the better road/highway car with much better interstate range.

As for the original question of one as an autocrosser: some guys like Sam Strano love 'em. I however think it would be a hot mess of wheelspin, torque steer, and front tire abuse. They make so much power down low that it doesn't really get fun until 3rd gear. They do rotate nicely though, among the best I've ever experienced in any FWD car. On a roadcourse they're pretty hilarious too.

getfast
getfast Reader
5/12/14 11:49 a.m.

PS - worth mentioning since the OP asked, my biggest FoST gripe as a DD is the size of the gas tank. I'm only getting 200-225mi around town or 275-300mi all highway. My old GTI blew all that out of the water ( http://www.fuelly.com/driver/getfast/focus-st vs http://www.fuelly.com/driver/getfast/gti ). Pretty minor thing and entirely driver opinion dependent but it does annoy me... especially during fast interstate travel, needing a fuel stop every 3.5hrs.

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