We've long pined for many of the exemplary automobiles Ford offers in Europe. Thanks to the One Ford mantra enforced by CEO Alan Mulally, we're starting to see those cars show up in North America, but one truly awesome example -- the Ford Focus RS -- may never arrive on our shores.
Ford has already announced and revealed the performance-oriented 2012 Focus ST hatchback, which is destined for North America, but the company has remained rather quiet about a possible next-gen RS model. Motor Trend recently sat down with Jost Capito, head of the Ford Performance Vehicle division, and discovered the company may not even create a new version.
"It sounds silly, but think of the [Focus] RS as a shark and the [Focus] ST as a dolphin," Capito told MT. "Obviously, you want more dolphins in your pool, but some people will want sharks, because a dolphin isn't a shark and doesn't do what a shark does."
A rather off the wall analogy, but it makes sense -- Ford would likely find more buyers (especially here in the U.S.) with a well-rounded vehicle with some performance credentials than it would with a hardcore, pedal-to-the-metal, race-tuned vehicle. The latter model -- which is close to the RS formula -- doesn't necessarily make sense, but the car has proven to be a bit of a sensation in Europe.
"The [Focus] RS depends on a lot of factors," Capito said. "It's a really special thing; you can't predict it."
For now Ford is evaluating business and market conditions, both in North America and in Europe, and waiting until they align before committing to an RS. For now, all we can do is cross our fingers, hope there are enough shark lovers in this world to convince Ford to craft a new RS.
Source: Motor Trend