Matt Robinson profile picture Matt Robinson a year ago 88

Does The Ford Focus RS Have A Head Gasket Failure Problem?

With reports of premature head gasket failures mounting, Ford has released a statement to address RS owners' concerns

Remind me later
Ford - Does The Ford Focus RS Have A Head Gasket Failure Problem? - News

As a four-wheel drive, 345bhp hot hatch weapon with a ‘Drift Mode’, the Focus RS seems like a triumph for Ford on paper. However, RS life is not going well for some owners.

Take Reddit user ‘KentuckysGentleman’, who’s documented his issues on a massive thread that’s just ticked over 1000 comments. He first noticed something was wrong when his RS started idling roughly on a cold start, which was soon followed by the dreaded ‘check engine’ light, and ‘random multiple misfires’. He’s not alone, either.

His post on the forum already has responses from 23 other owners experiencing similar problems - uneven idling, excessive fluid consumption and white smoke. The worst part is, it doesn’t sound like a quick thing to fix. In the case of ‘KentuckysGentleman’, he’s in for a wait of “four to eight weeks” for the parts to arrive “from backorder.”

Over at Jalopnik multiple forum posts and YouTube videos from RS owners around the world have been dug up, all with the same kind of issues. The publication also spoke to one owner who’s already been waiting six weeks for parts. Now, Ford has issued a response, and has seemingly admitted there may be some kind of issue:

“Ford is aware that some 2016-17 Focus RS customers have experienced concerns with their engines, which may initially show white exhaust smoke and/or coolant consumption. We are working on a repair for all customers. In the meantime, if vehicles show these symptoms, customers should visit their dealer for an inspection and repair under warranty.”

Ford UK also told us that there are efforts afoot to get replacement parts in place “across all markets” to deal with affected cars.

We’ll be following this story with interest…