Fans of fast Fords were upset when the Blue Oval announced there were no plans for a new Focus RS. The current Ford Focus ST produces 271bhp, which isn’t quite enough to properly compete with the Cupra Leon and Honda Civic Type R. Now, though, Mountune has released another tuning pack for the Focus ST, taking the hot grocery-getter up to 360bhp. That’s much more like it.
As well as the extra power, the m365 package adds 103 lb ft (140Nm) of torque. Mountune hasn’t released performance stats, but we’d expect a good few tenths to be knocked off the standard ST’s 5.7-second 0-62mph time. The 325bhp m330 tuning pack brings it down to 5.2s. While power is close to the 395bhp Audi RS3, the Focus won’t be as quick as that off the line as it’s still front-driven.
Like the m330, the m365 version brings a more aggressive launch control setting, plus extra exhaust noise when you’re in Sport and Track modes. The Track mode takes the place of the Wet mode and reduces the amount of pops and bangs.
The m365 pack is not yet available on automatic Focus STs. That’s no issue for us, as we’d argue the Focus ST isn’t so special when attached to a seven-speed torque converter. In standard form, the fast Focus isn’t as exciting as the smaller and less powerful Fiesta ST. That’s why the Fiesta’s on our list of the best hot hatches and the Focus isn’t. Hopefully this Mountune m365 Focus ST is much more exciting.
When we drove the m330-equipped Focus ST, we found the extra torque made it a little harder to get off the line smoothly. But on the move it has no problem putting the power down, and it felt like the chassis could only just cope with the extra urge - which we liked. How another 35bhp will affect it, we’ll have to wait and see.
The Mountune kits no longer comply with Ford’s factory warranty, which is a shame. That was one of the major reasons you’d pick a Mountune kit over some other aftermarket options. A Focus ST with the m365 kit will still pass an MOT test, and we’re told the kit can be installed and removed in minutes - so you could return your ST to stock when selling it on.
But the m365 upgrade still provides good value. It starts at £689, and you can add a three-inch downpipe and a new petrol particulate filter for £575 and £525 respectively. A panel filter is a whisker under £50. Buy the whole kit and you’re looking at around £1800. In the grand scheme of things, that’s not much more than the £1450 Ford charges for the automatic gearbox that makes the car slower. If you already have the m330 kit, it’s just £99 to make the jump up to this one.
Do you think the Mountune kit will turn the Focus ST into a real hot hatch contender? Tell us in the comments.