So much is new about this fourth-generation Focus that the difference between it and its predecessor isn’t so much a gap but a veritable gulf.
The Focus is the first Blue Oval model to be based on the car giant’s new C2 platform. According to Ford, this has played a crucial role in ensuring the Focus lives up to its ‘fun to drive’ USP and enabled overall torsional rigidity of the fourth-generation model to be upped by 20%.
The rear structure, meanwhile, has been stiffened using the same process developed for the last Focus RS. A shaped foam insert is placed, wet, into a rear underbody cavity and allowed to expand during the paint-drying process, increasing local lateral rigidity by 10% with minimal weight gain. The individual suspension mounting points have also been stiffened.
On that note, the Focus’s suspension configuration differs depending on trim level and body shape specified. All cars come with a MacPherson strut-type arrangement up front, with lower-grade five-door hatches featuring a classic torsion beam at the rear. However, estate models and higher-powered hatchbacks such as our ST-Line X test car gain a multi-link layout for the rear axle.