Ford Australia has ruled out the high-performance Focus ST diesel - which will reportedly be powered by a 2.0-litre TDCi turbo diesel four-cylinder engine with about 136kW of power and 380Nm of torque - because there is no expectation among hot hatch buyers for a diesel option.
The company says the car is "not on the radar" for local launch, despite the car having not even been officially revealed yet. The move to rule out the diesel hot-hatch mirrors Volkswagen Australia's decision to pass on the Golf GTD performance model, which is essentially a diesel twin to the impressive Golf GTI.
Ford's updated Focus range (below) will be sold here from mid-2015, and while the go-fast ST diesel is a no-go, it is expected to retain a mainstream diesel option despite sales of diesel small cars dwindling.
"We haven’t confirmed the engine line-up for the facelifted Focus yet," said Ford Australia brand communications manager Neil McDonald.
It is expected the new model will finally be offered with a full range of efficient turbocharged EcoBoost petrol engines, with a 1.0-litre three-cylinder and 1.5-litre four-cylinder to be offered in Europe.
The current Focus range has a choice of 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre naturally aspirated petrol engines, with the flagship ST the only recipient of a turbo petrol powerplant. The diesel currently offered is a 2.0-litre turbo diesel unit, which will be replaced by a 1.5-litre version which is likely to boast slightly less power but improved fuel efficiency.