While local performance aficionados await the arrival of the hot Ford Fiesta ST in South Africa, the Blue Oval has taken the wraps off the dangerously-hot next Focus ST at Geneva, kitted with a massive 2,5-litre powerplant!

While local performance aficionados await the arrival of the hot Ford Fiesta ST in South Africa, the Blue Oval has taken the wraps off the dangerously-hot next Focus ST at Geneva, kitted with a massive 2,5-litre powerplant!

The performance version of the popular Focus is powered by a turbocharged 162 kW 2,5-litre five-cylinder Duratec engine and equipped with a six-speed manual gearbox. The engine is borrowed from the Volvo S40, which also shares its platform with the new Focus and Mazda3.

The rally-bred ST, which rides on low-profile 18-inch five-spoke aluminium wheels, conveys its athleticism with its striking sports styling on the outside and purposeful interior finishings.

"We created the Focus ST using the same principles as the Fiesta ST, delivering sporting credentials with full family capability," a Ford representative said. "It will have performance and handling attributes like those we delivered in the original Focus RS, but will be a truly civilised all-rounder."

The existing Focus' design themes have been reworked to accommodate the car's performance brief – the front grille is taller and narrower than that on the regular Focus models, the front and rear fog lamp apertures are finished in brushed aluminium and the sculpted rear bumper now sprouts chrome-tipped dual tailpipes.

Details like the rear spoiler, door handles, mirrors and side mouldings are all finished in a "spirited" bright orange, the latest ST's signature colour.

An additional instrument cluster housing the turbocharger boost pressure, oil temperature and oil pressure gauges, can be found on the binnacle, which is finished in brushed aluminium. More aluminium accents are found throughout the interior on the leather-covered three-spoke steering wheel, the gear knob, foot pedals, and on the scuff plate.

The Focus ST is fitted with special driver and passenger seats trimmed in a leather-and-cloth combination.

The new Focus, manufactured locally for the domestic and international markets, should be available in South Africa by June 2005.

Good news for hot hatch aficionados eager to get their clammy hands on the smaller Fiesta ST is that they will not have too long to wait. Expected by mid-year, the 110 kW Fiesta ST will be powered by a 2,0-litre Duratec engine and will come complete with a performance-tuned chassis, the distinctive ST insignia and racy 17-inch alloy wheels.

More Geneva Motor Show articles:

Audi RS4

Chevrolet Spark

Lamborghini Concept S

Mercedes Benz B-Class

Ferrari F430 Spyder

Peugeot 407 Coupé Prologue

BMW 7 Series

Renault Laguna

Opel Astra OPC

Citroën C1, Peugeot 107 and Toyota Aygo

BMW 130i

Nissan Zaroot

Audi Allroad Concept

Mazda MX-5

Rinspeed Senso

Honda Civic Concept

Original article from Car