Ford’s EcoBoost engine lineup is expanding with a new 178-hp 1.6-liter turbocharged I-4. The long-awaited 1.6-liter EcoBoost recently shown in the Fiesta ST Concept will debut as an optional engine on the new Ford Focus Zetec S in the United Kingdom.
The EcoBoost 1.6-liter I-4 is intended to make the newly created Ford Focus Zetec S a stopgap hot hatch while Britons wait for the Focus ST to arrive early next year. Under the hood of the Focus Zetec S the 1.6-liter turbocharged four-banger is good for 178-hp, a 0-62 mph time of 7.9 seconds and a top speed of 138 mph. The 1.6-liter EcoBoost I-4 will be available with a five-speed manual and six-speed dual-clutch automatic.
As a Focus ST placeholder, the Focus Zetec S (available initially as a five-door hatch, with a wagon available starting in February) looks the part. The Zetec S gets a “sport styling kit” with unique front and rear spoilers, lower sill extensions, and 17-inch alloy wheels. Backing up the show is a sport suspension with stiffer springs and dampers for sportier handling.
In the U.K., the Focus Zetec S is priced equivalent to the Focus Titanium, which costs $23,495 in the New World. Would an EcoBoost 1.6-liter I-4 be an engine you’d want to see available in Focus in the United States? Should it replace the current naturally-aspirated, direct-injected 2.0? Should it be in addition to it? Will we soon see it under the hood of a U.S.-spec Fiesta ST? Should Ford follow GM and Mazda’s lead with a U.S. diesel offering for 2013? Let us know in the comments below.