Editorial

Think The Focus RS Is Overhyped? Maybe You Should Look At The Fusion Sport

Why isn't anyone talking about the Fusion Sport?

The Ford Focus RS has been riding the hype train for a long time. For years the US begged Ford to bring the hottest version of the Focus hatchback stateside. But now that we're finally getting it, isn't it getting a little overhyped? We have asked this question before. The 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine produces 345 hp, which is a lot. However, for $35,000 you can also get a 435-horsepower Mustang GT. This is even before you factor in the dealer markups that may raise the price of the Focus RS as much as $15,000 or more.

Clearly the Focus RS is overhyped because dealerships will be charging north of $50,000 to get one. So if the Focus ST isn't enough for you, but you don't want to pay $15,000 over sticker price for a car, what should you do? Luckily there is another car coming from Ford that will feature an EcoBoost engine and AWD. The new Ford Fusion Sport will be available for $33,475. This is less than the Focus RS and there won't be ridiculous demand that drives up prices. Just because the Fusion costs less than the RS doesn't mean you get less. The Fusion Sport has two more cylinders and one more turbocharger than the RS. Although slightly down on power, it will be pretty fast.

The twin-turbocharged 2.7-liter V6 EcoBoost will make 325 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque which is the same as the Focus RS and more than a BMW 340i. (We won't even take the time to compare it to a Camry or Accord.) Like the Focus, this power will go through an AWD system. This engine is bigger than the unit in the Focus, and has an extra turbo, so it may actually net more power via aftermarket mods. Ford has not announced 0-60 mph times, but we suspect that it will be within striking distance of the overhyped Focus RS. So why aren't people talking about the Fusion Sport? Well, it is a Fusion after all. The Focus RS has been so long awaited that it hogs all the limelight from the media. However, the media is wrong here!

Just because we say it is good doesn't mean that people will buy it. Think about what the Focus RS is. It is a manual-only, hatchback with a Ford badge that will cost more than $40,000. That is essentially poison in the US where consumers are only interested in crossovers with automatics. The Fusion Sport probably won't be able to match the Focus RS on a race track, but people (in the US) will actually buy it. If Ford had given it an ST or RS badge, it would have been hyped as well. In fact, we aren't sure why Ford didn't just use the ST badge on this car in the first place. Perhaps it would have marketed to too young of an audience? Or, perhaps an even faster model is on its way? Boy that would be cool.

If you don't think the Focus RS is worth a $15,000 mark up, then you should consider the Fusion Sport. It isn't a hatchback, and it won't come with a manual, but maybe that is a good thing. We think the Fusion Sport is drastically underhyped, but we're hoping it'll get its own seat on the hype train sooner than later.

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