During the Ford Focus RS launch in Valencia earlier this week, I asked Ford’s vehicle engineering manager, Tyrone Johnson, about a rather large blanking plate on the RS’s intercooler. As you’ll see in the video, the reason for the plate is to reduce the efficiency of the intercooler because Ford discovered that in particularly humid conditions, the intercooler was working too efficiently, which caused a build up of water vapour. And because water in an engine is bad news, Ford searched through its parts bin and took the same blanking plate that it used for its diesel Transit van intercoolers and placed it over the intercoolers of the Focus RSs. So you could say, then, that the RS is part super hatch, part practical van…you know, in case you need to justify the purchase to a wife or girlfriend.
In the video, you’ll also hear about a few other cars the Focus RS owes its life to.