2015 Ford Focus ST: Compact Hot Hatch offers thrills to the gills!

Ford’s Focus ST is truly a star amongst the hot hatchback segment. Aggressively styled, superbly engineered; it offers true performance enthusiast driving experiences for every inner would-be racecar driver. It all starts- obviously with exterior. Our 2015, 5 -door ST hatchback tester arrived with a bold Magnetic Metallic paint and black stripe package that really carried off the menacing crouching stance highlighted by a body kit that includes side sills, special aerodynamic fascia’s, a rear hatch spoiler and twin hexagonal tailpipes. 18-inch premium painted wheels with All-season tires completes the low-down hunkered look. There are only slight revisions to the 2015 ST, perhaps a testament to how good the original model introduced only two years ago to Canada. The powertrain is unchanged, with a tried and trusted turbocharged 2.0L 4-cylinder offering a very respectable 252 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque. The default transmission is of course the 6-speed manual that makes excellent use of the peppy, rev happy engine.

The Focus ST interior has a sporty theme, with a neat functional cabin. Most prominent up front is the performance driver cockpit with excellent, intuitive ergonomics, large, easy to read gauges and well placed switchgear and controls.

The special Italian Recaro sports seats are phenomenal in terms of support and comfort. The rear cabin is also well apportioned with decent enough room and foldable seats to allow extra versatility when carrying long loads.

Our tester came with a number of options, including: Navigation system ($800) and the Technology package ($1,250) comprising MyFord Touch system Infotainment system with Sirius Radio, 10 –speaker audio and dual zone climate control. Standard features include the new Sync system, a rear-view camera and a super fast USB smart charging port that’s twice as quick as a standard port. The base price for our tester came to $29,999 and with all options and taxes rang in at $34,814 for a final total including $1,565 for destination and delivery.

On the road, out and about in the urban grind and rural twisting roads is where the Focus ST really shines as a performance orientated car. The willing, fire breathing engine and sweet, fast six speed transmission work in perfect harmony to deliver fast acceleration and delightful up and downshift availability. However performance does not come at the expense of fuel economy and the 2015 Ford Focus ST delivers Fuel economy figures of (litres/100 km): 10.2 (city); 7.3 (hwy).

Enthusiast will also appreciate the ST’s leech-like grip, tight handling and control through the corners thanks to new springs, stiffer tuned shocks all-around, and retuned steering. With its quick reflexes its is easy to see where the ST’s rally sport DNA comes as it makes short work of taking corners and transitions from smooth to rough road surfaces. Nothing to complain about really. It is a sports compact that will really be only justified if you enjoy the cut and thrust of driving a quick manual and is not really a car for the uninvolved driver. The 2015 Ford Focus ST is real performance car for enthusiasts everywhere. Highly recommended.

2015 Ford Focus ST Priced from $29,999. Price as tested with and with all options $34,814 including $1,565 for destination and delivery.