I had submitted this one to an outlet a while ago, but it never ran. Sad face. So here it is for Riverside Green readers—enjoy!
If you’re a fan of performance cars, it’s nearly impossible for you to argue with much of what Ford Performance has been up to in the last few years. The Boss 302 changed our perceptions of what was possible to accomplish on track with a pony car, and then the Shelby GT350 ripped open that envelope with a serrated blade. The Focus and Fiesta ST brothers packed more fun per dollar into a car than we’ve seen since the original GTI. And at the other end of the spectrum, let’s not forget the Ford GT and its return to motorsports dominance.
However, the one we were all waiting for, the one our European brothers have been taunting us with for generations, was the Focus RS. Complete with 350 horsepower, all-wheel drive, blindingly beautiful Nitrous Blue paint, and, yes, the publicity stunt that is “Drift Mode,” the RS arrived on our shores in 2016 with more pomp and circumstance than even Edward Elgar could have imagined. Despite my personal skepticism of all the promotion, it took me exactly four autocross runs with a press car to decide to add one to my personal fleet of Blue Ovals back in October. I happily paid MSRP at Glenn Ford in Nicholasville, Kentucky and drove off with my own blue hype machine.
But perhaps even more impressive than Ford’s commitment to building these machines is it’s commitment to teaching people how to drive them.