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Auto blogFri, 07 Mar 2014 18:28:00 EST
A few years back, Volkswagen made some waves when it announced the Golf GTD - a diesel-powered car that, aside from its ultra-efficient, ultra-torquey engine, was identical to the gas-powered GTI. That meant cosseting sport seats, larger wheels, sportier suspension, larger brakes and a body kit that made the GTD indistinguishable from the GTI, except for the three little letters on the back and in the grille.
Now, Ford is looking to replicate VW's success, with a diesel version of the Focus ST. According to Motor Trend, the diesel-powered ST will use a 2.0-liter, 182-horsepower four-cylinder. With an unspecified amount of torque on offer (we'd guess around 280 pound-feet), the diesel hot hatch should hit 62 miles per hour in about eight seconds.
The report, which originally comes from Auto Express, claims the ST Diesel was confirmed by Ford Chief Marketing Officer Mark Fields during this week's Geneva Motor Show. Not surprisingly, it doesn't appear there are any plans to bring a diesel-powered Focus of any kind to the US, let alone one that uses the suspension, steering and other items from the ST. Of course, if there's an official confirmation from Ford, we'll be sure to report on it.
Oprah Winfrey loves giving away cars. Not only has she given Pontiac G6 sedans and Volkswagen Beetle retro-mobiles to everyone in the audience of her past show, but the other night on Jimmy Kimmel Live! she gave another car away to one lucky audience member, while yelling her now-famous line: "You get a car!"
Although the acting of Oprah and Jimmy Kimmel was obviously staged for this giveaway, the reaction from the woman in the audience was genuine shock as she found out that she had just won a new Ford Fusion Energi. Congrats!
Not to take away from what Oprah and Jimmy pulled off, but our cynical sides have to wonder if there isn't more than just a little coincidence that this giveaway took place on the same day that Ford announced a fuel economy reduction for the C-Max hybrid. You be the judge... Scroll down to watch the short clip from the episode.
The Brits don't really have a major auto show these days. Not in a conventional sense, anyway, with stationary vehicles under floodlights in a closed exposition space. What they do have, you could argue, is much better: the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where the public can view the latest machinery not only under an open sky, but in motion as well, speeding up Lord March's front lawn. And this year, British automakers are rolling in with some very enticing new metal.
In the past few days alone we've confirmed the McLaren 650S GT3 and MSO, Jaguar F-Type Project 7, Range Rover Sport SVR and Ariel Ace will all be revealed for the first time at Goodwood this weekend. Ford isn't, strictly speaking, a British automaker, but for all its history in the UK, it might as well. So it's chosen Goodwood as the site to unveil its refreshed Focus ST.
The upgraded Blue Oval hot hatch still packs a 2.0-liter turbo four with 252 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque driving through a six-speed manual to the front wheels, so we're not expecting much change in measurable performance. But Ford has given the new Focus ST a new front suspension setup and a new electric power-assisted steering rack that combine to promise improved handling.