News & Reviews
Last 7 Days
Expand Ad


In addition to the introduction of the new Ford Focus, Ford of Europe has also released details and official photos of the Ford Focus XR5, better known in Europe as the Focus ST.

Although the Ford Focus RS (based on the existing Focus) only landed in Australia last week, the new generation of XR5 turbos are expected to make their way to the Australian market by 2012.

No longer powered by the five-cylinder 2.5-litre unit borrowed from Volvo, the new Ford Focus ST makes do with a smaller 2.0-litre 184kW version of Ford’s new EcoBoost four-cylinder petrol engine. Despite now only having four-cylinders, we suspect the XR5 nameplate may still live on in Australia, given that the XR4 name is already reserved for the new Fiesta ST.

Although half a litre smaller in capacity than before, the new 2.0-litre Ford EcoBoost engine undergoes serious modifications to make it worthy of an XR (or ST) badge. Unique intake and exhaust systems plus Ford’s specific engine calibration for the XR5 sees power and torque increased by over 10 percent over the previous model.

With 184kW to keep you going, the new Focus XR5 manages to pull itself ahead with 360Nm of torque. 0-100km/h times are not officially disclosed yet, however we do know that despite the increase in power and torque, the new XR5 will use an estimated 20% less fuel.

Ford will offer the new XR5 with a 6-speed manual gearbox designed for spirited driving, as standard.

The XR5 is the love-child of Ford’s Team RS (Europe) and SVT (USA) engineers. The two groups have been responsible for such classics as the Focus RS, Mustang Shelby GT500 and F-150 SVT Raptor.

Although it shares the basic underpinnings as a standard Focus, the XR5 is lowered by 10mm and makes use of a substantially different variable ratio steering system.

On top of that sporty suspension makes cornering an easier task whilst high performance brakes allow for rapid deceleration.

From the outside the 2012 Ford Focus XR5 is distinguished by its more aggressive looks. From the front the twin upper and lower grilles of the standard Focus have been replaced by a one-piece design which sits higher on the nose of the vehicle.

Meanwhile the front spoiler also gets a new look.  Ford says the spoiler blades linking to the rest of the body lines through the grille structure are inspired by a similar treatment in the current Focus RS model. The XR5 sits on huge 19-inch Y-spoke alloy wheels.

From the back there is more sporty DNA. The rear lamps make do with a dark smoked tint whilst the exhaust shines through a central dual-pipe outlet. Ford says the sound of the new XR5 was a big factor in its development, meaning the new one will undoubtedly sound very good.

Moving inside, the Focus XR5 gets Recaro sport seats as well three gauges for turbo boost, oil pressure and oil temperature. Ford has also chosen “Tangerine Scream” as its hero colour for the XR5, paying homage to the previous generations “electric orange” colour scheme.

Would you consider a new Ford Focus XR5? Should Ford Australia keep the XR5 nameplate despite the car now only having four-cylinders?


  • ox

    I want to love it but just can’t get past the awkward styling, shame tho because I reckon it would be a wicked drive.

    • A.S

      The front is bearable but those rear lights are simply hideous.

    • somerandom

      but it does have potential to grow on you i’d imagine

  • alexmack

    I think it looks good. At least it looks sporty unlike the golf gti.

    • bangel

      Your right alexmack , making it hard for me when lease is up on the GTI .

      That is very tasty , like the aggression , love that colour , agh choices .

      • tt

        This is a seriously classy hot hatch. The interior is cutting edge also. A much better offering than the WRX dinosaur and comparible to the Golf R given the significant price differential.

  • ox

    Looks like munted goldfish imo, maybe in a dark colour.

    • My Cars Called T-Rex

      I agree ox,from some angles the front looks like a mud guppie and the rear lights are too big,makes it look cheap.

      • matt

        hey ox, you have had your one dig…. at the very start.. how about you shut your mouth now and let people who like the car speak… I LOVE IT, good work ford, very nice.

        • steve b

          I agree with Matt. Looks fantastic. Hope they’ve finally put cruise control on it, and bluetooth. We have an XR5 which we love, and a golf 118 TSI which we sorta love, I think we’ll end up with two of the new ST’s…or XR5′s. Can’t wait. Could be an argument over who gets the hero colour…

  • Steve-Poyza

    Lol at the fuel filler cap!

    • Ben 10

      When I saw your comment I scrolled back through to find it… It seems as though they’ve forgotton to put it in when they finished. Mate, it looks so ackward, but apart from that I personally think the car looks pretty snazzy :P

  • Jimmy James

    Any shred of class and restraint the existing car had has been eliminated. This thing is hideous. The dash is probably the worst I have seen. What a shame, because it will probably drive really well. HOW HARD IS IT TO DESIGN A GOOD LOOKING CAR THAT ALSO GOES WELL? HOW HARD CAN IT BE?????!!!!!!

    • Hayzel

      Why don’t you design one genius!!

  • Martin

    http://www.caradvice.com.au/85183/2012-ford-focus-xr5-st-unveiled/2011-ford-focus-xr5-front2/

    Sit…or stand? back from your screen a bit, then imagine it’s an Aston Martin. haha! Hidden beauty?

    Anti-Spam word: DB9.

  • Tony M

    The new Focus XR5(?) has a very aggresive nose. The general shape of the car looks as if it is in motion. I must admit the centre consol looks busy to me but perhapes it’s functional in real life. As a replacement for the current Focus I think it might do well. And I hope for Ford sake it does because I believe this is the segment of the car market that will grow while the Falcon/Commodore size will diminish.

    • steve b

      i agree about this segment growing. Have downsized from a 6 litre Calais to a Golf, could never go big again. Can’t wait for the new XR5

  • Jabba the Hutt

    The front styling is ok but wow did they screw up the rear.

    I quite like the interior though.

  • Able

    An old Focus XR5T went like the clappers, drove well and was well-finished; most of all it had class! This one (especially in THIS colour) has lost all the class!

    You can really tell that Ford USA helped :(. GTI still does it for me.

    • jeremy

      Agreed. This is too boy-racer for my likes.
      Would have liked this engine in the current XR5.

  • Joker

    I think the interior looks great! Gauge pods and I really like the overall shape of the dash/console.
    Exterior was already growing on me since they showed the concepts earlier on.
    Can’t wait to see it in the flesh, i think it will look the goods.

  • crouchy

    The dash looks like one of those old school Sony 50-cd stacker home stereos…. not good at all…

  • The other Brad

    Rear reminds me of the Volvo c30 – especially the lights.

    • Joker

      Not a bad thing either.

  • Banicks

    Ford, you may yet sway me. Getting much better feature wise on your sports models by the looks of interior.

  • Save It for the track

    Considering that Ford Aus tends not to market the XR’s very well anyway, why not just leave it as the ST? Should help keep the price down a bit too, without the need to take off ST badges, re-stitch seats etc. The shape looks more like a grown up fiesta than an evolution of the Focus shape.

    • maximark

      Couldn’t agree more. It shouldn’t longer be called the XR5 since now it’s a four cylinder engine. Somehow I still think the Volvo engine is more potential than this new 2 litres engine.

      • Joker

        I will miss the 5 pot burble but as great as this engine is, it’s not the most efficient unit out there. The most i can get out of mine around down is 10L/100….Freeways are better…8L/100 but still…this will offer the best of both worlds I hope. Ford tend to have their engines tuned for a usable spread of torque so I would expect turbos to spool somewhere between 1500-2000RPM.
        Sure ford could continue working the 5 pot but now they don’t have Volvo sharing the developments they make in the unit, whats the point especially when it won’t be in anything else for Ford Global?

  • jj

    Sony modelled the dash centre off one of their 1990s home stereos by the looks of it…

    why cant they get rid of the sony gear and get quality?

    • Joe5619

      Reality check!! Sony is one of the best when it comes to steros!!!

      • Joker

        I love the 8 speaker Sony System in my XR5.
        Damn good for a standard unit or were you expecting B&O jj??

  • waggaclint

    I like the new look, ill be keen to see them up close in real time, hopefully they will have some nice new colours as well…The feul filler lid does look a bit strange…

    I still think the new WRX is best hot hatch around…

  • Steven

    Too many creases and lines. Looks too busy.

    I reckon this would look good in black but lose the tacky logos on the seats!

  • Qikturbo

    Basically the same power and torque figures as the Golf R,
    and the Megane RS.
    This is great,because the over rated GTI is falling behind in power and torque each time a manufacturer announces/releases their sport version.
    This ST model looks ok but I would rather wait for the ST version,if we ever get in OZ!

    • http://BMW Nelson

      I think you mean RS, yes?

      Me too the front just looks like a fish.
      I’ll be keeping my Focus XR5 for much longer now.

      I’ll be waiting for the RS or a Face-lift because I’m not riving no fish with scary eyes!

  • Hayzel

    I have not seen an article in this website about new generation of a well loved car where people do not overly comment negatively about the “LOOKS” of the car. To tell you the truth most new cars look much better than the old one and that is for a fact! DOn’t believe me? Get an older version of a car say..a honda civic and park a newer generation one next to it, you can immediately see the difference. People these days are afraid of change and now bashing cars based on its looks became the norm. It’s patheticly annoying really..why not accept the car as what it is? Now go look at comments posted in articles about german cars, volkswagen, etc and you should be able to see immediately that people would comment overly positive about the cars. …..like a bunch of farm animals people are….

    • Radbloke

      Are you telling us that the current Impreza is better looking than the previous? I guess there really is no cure for stupid.

      • TJ

        I was lucky to buy my uncles 1974 Ford XB Coupe and looks better and sounds better than any car released in the 35+ years since it was made.

  • http://BMW Nelson

    Don\’t get me wrong mate, but if you look at the normal Focus 2011 and this ST model, this ST front grill is ridiculous and not aggressive.

    I doubt Ford will release this ST the way it looks.

    Gold Fish with Scary eyes!

    I\’ll wait for a Face-lift or RS, thanx!

  • Shak

    Does anyone else think this is the offspring of a wide-mouth bass and a CR-Z?

    • matt

      always proving your intelligence shak *shakes head

  • zahmad

    Everything else seems fine that the front grill shape to me! The front grill should be shaped the other way around like the current cars.

    • Jonty

      Agree, the grill is upside down on the ford norm.

      Will the upside down grill make an appearance in future car design…?

  • toxic_horse

    I have no problem with the XR5 name, I am sure I remember a capri called a XR2 a long time ago.

  • Hendrik

    The new Focus ST!
    ……..Not for pansies

    Hey its a polarising design, at least its not generic like a Mazda 3 or Golf which in my opinion are styled to suit accountants and women in the 30s who are tried to marry up before its too late.

  • nickdl

    How much would a new rear bumper cost on that thing? Very busy design IMO, and I’m not sure if they’ve pulled it off at Ford. The normal model is OK, but this just looks a bit over the top and I can’t see it ageing well. At least the interior, which the driver sees all the time, looks fantastic and it’s loaded with features and a good drivetrain.

  • Denzo

    Secret Word: KIA

    How Fitting!!

  • Car Fanatic

    This is hilarious, if CA photoshopped Aston badges in place of the blue ovals, everyone would be creaming over an Aston Martin hot hatch.

  • david_t

    What is happening in the front end? do we get a revoknuckle? 180kw thru 2wd is pushing it…

    And pricing is the killer question. The current XR5 (current 32k drive away) is the best value for money car you can buy in Australia, bar none. This will need to sit 36-40k to be a cracker buy.. Anymore, and you’d be better buying a Megane RS 250.

    But i cant wait for a test drive ;)

  • bob

    FAIL on styling, the current model looks MUCH better.

  • Max

    The “Big Mouth” looks to be be all the rage. Reminds me of the Ralliart/Evo range fronts……scary!

  • Al Juraj

    Bring it here quickly, price it under 35K (while the dollar is high) and I will be among the first to sign up.

  • The Man

    I reckon its looks good and has alot of character to it, the interior looks futuristic and intresting to, I reckon ford did a good job on this one. Good to also see the power is up and its garanteed to be a good car and good bang for your buck like all ford performance cars are, cant wait to see them on the road

  • billy

    Second ugliest front-end to the hideous Nissan Micra

  • Richard

    It is ugly as all hell. I dont think one part of it is worthy of the XR5 badge espeially considering it now will only have 4 cylinders. It may come with lightly more torque and power but in know way is it enough to componsate for its ugliness.

  • I30

    For all the haters, if this looks bad then the Holdens look s..t

  • Governor Arnie

    Definitely does not deserve the XR5 badging. Own the current version, best decision ever made. Sat in the new one, seems smaller, less room in the rear, and my right knee hits the light switch. Hideous front and rear, centre console having been inspired by Transformers Decepticons. What a joke. Just cos something is new doesn’t mean it’s better. The first WRX was the best, most agressive of all to date. The facelift XR5 is definitely my pick as the best, with the limited run of Volvos 2.5 I’m sure it will hold it’s value too.

  • Jodie

    i love everything about it !
    Question to everyone .. Can u give me an idea of how much it will cost ?

  • Eyesore

    Ricers make baby Jesus cry

    Its plain hideous

  • Danny

    great features  performance etc..1 problem  its still a 5dr are there no 3dr hot hatches anymore  eg tx3 turbo

  • Danny

    ford needs to make a new tx3 laser  with this 184kw 2.0 in fwd  6spd maybe even a awd model 

  • D-jhills

    When is Australia getting them

  • http://twitter.com/LaurieMackeson1 Laurie Mackeson

    I wonder if it has cruise control…all quality vehicles do. I also wonder if the clutch, gear shift and accelerator actually feel like they do in performance vehicles. If ALL those ‘boxes’ are ticket it would have me driving into the dealer in my current vehicle to sign a purchase contract!