Ford Cosworth Focus: refined racing-inspired concept

Los Angeles, December 29, 1998 - The mission for Ford Motor Company's performance design team and Cosworth Racing's engine group was simple -- take the new, dynamic Ford Focus and give it racing-inspired hustle. Los Angeles Auto Show onlookers will get the first look at the result -- the Ford Cosworth Focus, a well-bred performance concept car based on Ford's all-new small car.

The concept, a clever combination of Cosworth's unmatched Formula One, CART and World Rally heritage and success with Ford Special Vehicle Engineering's penchant for sophisticated driver's cars, blends each group's complementary trademark cues to deliver new standards of refined performance.

Cosworth Focus builds on the impressive production chassis and class-leading driving dynamics of Ford Focus, recently named "European Car of the Year 1999". The production Focus features a multi-link independent rear suspension that gives the car refined stability while reducing the car's overall weight and noise-vibration-and-harshness. The North American production version will make its debut at the North American International Auto Show the first week of January, 1999.

"Ford Focus is much more sophisticated than other cars in its class, so it proved to be the perfect vehicle to base a performance concept worthy of the Cosworth name," said O.J. Coletti, chief engineer, Ford Special Vehicle Engineering. "Engineers from Cosworth Racing worked closely with SVE and Ford Advanced Design to build this concept that will appeal to the enthusiastic driver."

Coletti's team turned the already impressive Focus into a thrill ride by lowering the suspension 1.5 inches and adding unique, aerodynamic side rocker panels, front and rear fascias as well as completely original body panels from the glass beltline down.

These unique body parts shape around weight-saving, performance-enhancing 18-inch magnesium wheels shod with Goodyear 235/40ZR18 Eagle GS tires. This combination aggressively takes on the road with adjustable shocks and front and rear variable rate anti-roll bars. The car comes to a quick and steady stop with 14-inch rear/12-inch front disk brakes with 4-piston front and rear calipers.

Perfectly complementing this dynamic chassis package is a Cosworth-developed 2.0L turbocharged DOHC Zetec engine with intercooled induction system that produces an estimated 200 hp. The engine is mated to a 5-speed MTX-75 manual transmission with viscous-drive limited slip differential so drivers can push the car with total control.

The powertrain is neatly completed with custom fabricated stainless steel exhaust headers connected to dual 2.5-inch exhaust pipes with low-restriction mufflers. So, while the driver is screaming through the gears, the car dances along to a nice tune.

Inside, drivers are treated to an upgraded interior environment that includes Ford Special Vehicle Team-inspired custom cluster graphics. While driving, each touch will be delightful thanks to upgraded seats, shift knob and steering wheel as well as unique alloy clutch, brake and accelerator pedals.

Much like Ford and Cosworth's Formula One or CART race cars, the Ford Cosworth Focus concept could inspire the best drivers in the world to enjoy Sunday afternoon drives … often.



2.0L DOHC Cosworth Zetec


Turbocharged and intercooled induction


Custom fabricated stainless steel exhaust headers


2.5-inch exhaust pipe with low-restriction muffler


200+ hp


5-speed MTX-75 with viscous-drive limited slip differential


Lowered 1.5 inches with adjustable rate shock absorbers


Variable rate front and rear anti-roll bars


Brembo 14.0-inch front/12.0-inch rear disk brakes


4-piston front/4-piston rear calipers


18-inch magnesium racing wheels


Goodyear 235/40ZR18 Eagle GS tires


Driver and passenger Recaro racing seats with unique materials


Alloy Clutch, brake and accelerator pedals


Custom instrument cluster graphics


Unique front and rear fascias, rocker panels and wheel lips


Functional hood air intake


Roof header-mounted rear spoiler