Thursday, Ford reported the mileage rating for its much-anticipated Focus ST. According the the EPA, the Focus will get 32 mpg on the highway. Ford says that makes it the most fuel efficient model available in its class. Others challenge that, however.
Numbers for the Ford Focus ST
The Focus ST, a new performance version of the Focus compact, will be available by the fall. Ford says the 2.0-liter, direct-injection, four-cylinder, turbocharged, inter-cooled Ecoboost engine will produce an impressive 252 horsepower and 270 foot-pounds of torque. Plus, it can reach 156 mph, says the automaker.
The Focus ST ‘narrative’
Like a true salesman, Raj Nair, vice president of Ford’s Global Product Development, gushed:
“We’re putting the ‘power’ in the power of choice, again. This is just one more example of the ‘win-win’ in the Focus ST narrative. This kind of performance combined with these high levels of efficiency sets a new benchmark with this car.”
The “Focus ST narrative” certainly is being done no harm by the EPA’s rating. The compete set of ratings: 23 mpg in the city, 32 mpg on the highway and 26 mpg combined. Not too shabby. That beats the Mazda Speed3 by 7 mpg on the highway, and the Volkswagen GTI by one.
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The 2012 Ford Focus, by contrast, gets only 26 mpg in the city, 36 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg combined. It’s delivery of 160 horsepower is practically embarrassing when contrasted with its more frugal cousin.
‘Best in class?’
Motor Trend, however, is qualifying Ford’s claim that it is the most fuel-efficient model in its class. It says the 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo will get 26 mpg in the city, 38 mpg on the highway and 30 mpg combined. However, it delivers considerably less muscle with its 201 horsepower.
According to Motor Trend:
“The Focus ST isn’t quite the absolute best-in-class in terms of fuel economy. If, however, you stack the Focus ST against turbocharged hot hatchbacks with at least 250 hp on tap, the ST is the most efficient competitor by a sizable margin.”
Available in late summer
Ford is taking orders now for the four-cylinder, front-wheel drive Focus ST. When it finally does hit showrooms late this summer, it will sell for around $25,000, including shipping.