2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback

2017 Ford Focus RS
2017 Ford Focus RS

Pros

  • Outlandish turbocharged power
  • Sophisticated all-wheel-drive system helps with performance, handling and wet-weather traction
  • Extreme grip when going around turns
  • Many high-tech options available

Cons

  • No automatic transmission offered
  • Rear legroom is tight for adults
  • The standard Recaro front sport seats might be uncomfortably narrow for some


Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

There are people who are perfectly happy buying a hatchback that is little more than an appliance to get them from point A to point B. Although this is fine, it's also not you. You want yours to be much more than that. You want it put a giant smile on your face every time you see it in your garage and startle nearby children when you hit the ignition. Enter the 2017 Ford Focus RS.

The Focus RS is an ultra-high-performance version of the standard Focus hatchback. At first glance, it looks similar to the already hopped-up Ford Focus ST, a car with 252 horsepower and solid hot-hatch credentials of its own. But the RS hits the afterburners with a 350-hp turbocharged four-cylinder engine (nearly 200 hp more than a base Focus), a sophisticated, torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system, upgraded brakes, adjustable suspension dampers and exclusive, supersticky Michelin tires.

Ford doesn't limit the RS to being a stripped-out racer, either. It comes with Sync 3 system as standard, which allows for features including Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and a host of other modern tech, a 10-speaker sound system, and keyless ignition and entry, all as standard. You also get the Focus' inherent cargo-carrying versatility.

The RS has a few drawbacks, but nothing that's of the deal-breaker variety. Rather, a RS purchase might come down to your priorities. If you want something that's a bit nicer and more comfortable, the Volkswagen Golf R (or related Audi S3 sedan) is the way to go, though it isn't as powerful or track-focused. Alternately, the Subaru WRX STI has all-wheel drive and the performance to back up its iconic name, but its modern amenities and comfort fall behind compared to the Focus. And don't forget the RS' little brother, the Focus ST, which is less powerful and front-wheel-drive, but it's still very enjoyable and will save you nearly a third of the cost.

If you're interested in the Focus RS, though, we give it a big thumbs-up.

The 2017 Ford Focus RS comes standard with antilock disc brakes, stability and traction control, a driver knee airbag, front side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. The Sync 3 system includes an emergency crash-notification feature that automatically dials 911 when paired with a compatible cellphone. Also standard are integrated blind-spot mirrors, a rearview camera and Ford's MyKey system, which can be used to set electronic driving parameters (think teenage kids or valets).

2017 Ford Focus RS configurations

The 2017 Ford Focus RS is a performance-oriented version of the Focus four-door hatchback. It is available in one trim level with a few items of optional equipment.

Standard equipment includes 19-inch alloy wheels, summer tires, performance brakes, adjustable suspension settings, automatic xenon headlights, LED running lights, foglights, integrated blind-spot mirrors, remote entry and push-button start, a rearview camera, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, partial leather upholstery, front Recaro sport seats (with driver height adjustment), a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a 10-speaker Sony sound system with HD and satellite radio, two USB ports and the Sync 3 infotainment system (including an 8-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto).

The RS2 package adds heated exterior mirrors, a heated steering wheel, a navigation system, heated front seats, a six-way power driver seat (with two-way power lumbar) and leather upholstery with simulated suede inserts. The Winter Tire & Wheel package provides winter tires mounted to RS-specific 18-inch wheels.

Standalone options include track-focused Michelin Pilot Cup Sport 2 tires, 19-inch forged alloy wheels and a sunroof.

The 2017 Ford Focus RS is powered by a turbocharged 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 350 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual transmission, all-wheel drive, hill-start assist and an automatic stop-start system (to help save fuel at stoplights) are standard.

EPA-estimated fuel economy wasn't available at publishing time, but last year's Focus RS posted a rating of 22 mpg in combined driving (19 city/25 highway).

Driving

With its strong emphasis on performance, the 2017 Ford Focus RS isn't for everybody. But for the few who are willing to sacrifice some comfort and refinement for thrills, this is the new "it" car.

Hit the gas and the turbo-four makes enough power to get that "gut-punch" feel on launch, and a booming engine sound immediately reverberates throughout the cabin. Back off the gas, and a few raucous pops and crackles emanate from the exhaust. To anyone with aspirations of being a racer, this is pure joy.

On public roads, you feel every flaw in the pavement, including painted crosswalk lines. Over concrete seams on a highway, the repeated jolts make you feel as if you're in a paint shaker at Home Depot. For fledgling rally racers, this is just a necessary evil to achieve such entertaining handling characteristics.

It's ridiculously rewarding to drive the Focus RS on a winding mountain pass, and it's ready to run in a track day with no modifications. The brakes are up to the task of continual abuse.

When cornering, the taut suspension gives the driver a very good sense of what the car can do, and it executes with precision and confidence. The same can be said of the steering, which relays the right amount of feedback to the driver, giving a clear indication of how much grip there is from the front tires.

By contrast, selecting Drift mode makes the car feel unsettled and unpredictable. It may help less talented drivers show off, but we consider it an unnecessary novelty. Selecting the Normal drive mode softens the suspension and dulls the engine response a bit to make it somewhat more livable. Somewhat. For drivers who crave the kind of performance the Focus RS delivers, it's worth every penny and shock to their spine. We get it, and we love it.

Interior

The 2017 Ford Focus RS shares most of its interior with the Focus ST. The cabin is well put together, with the proper controls within reach and soft surfaces for your elbows to rest on, but it doesn't feel as classy as the price tag might suggest. Rivals such as the Golf R and S3 look and feel significantly more upscale.

As with the ST, the Focus RS has heavily bolstered Recaro bucket seats that offer considerable lateral restraint in hard cornering. Bigger drivers will definitely want to have an extended test drive in these seats if they can, as the bolsters can become uncomfortable depending on body type. The rear seat has enough headroom for tall adults, but legroom is a bit limited, a common occurrence in this class. Most of the RS' competitors have more legroom, but only by an inch or two. With 19.9 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seats, the Focus RS falls behind the Golf R (22.8 cubes) but has much more than the sedan-only WRX STI (12 cubes).

For infotainment purposes, the RS has Ford's Sync 3 system, which uses an 8-inch touchscreen in the center console. The screen is designed to operate like a smartphone with gestures such as swiping or pinching to zoom. The menu structure is simple and the layout, with its white background and bottom row of buttons, will be recognizable to those who use Apple iOS devices. Anyone who remembers the Focus' previous MyFord Touch system will be happy to know that this newer software is much quicker to respond and much easier to use.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2017 Ford Focus RS.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

I couldn't wait
MikR,10/07/2017
I fully intended on waiting until I had a good amount of miles on my RS before Writing any reviews but I don't need anymore miles than the 2000 or so that I've already put on it, I have already come to my conclusion.. For lack of a better word This car is Epic! Of all the Magazine reviews, YouTube videos and Car Forums the hype is, in my opinion, much more conservative then what I have experienced in this 4 cylinder, Turbo charged, 350 - HP / Ft.lbs of Torque, All Wheel drive Beast! The power is seemingly limitless, the acceleration will throw your head back and put butterflies in your gut every time, especially with Launch mode activated, it is insane! Handling? Pshh I have taken curves at speeds that I have never attempted before, and I push all my cars to my limit. The Brembo brakes are so tight I thought my neck was going to break when I punched the brake peddle at 85 mph. The steering is super tight, the suspension is rock solid and the Michelin sport cup ll tires are sticky and grip like a cheetah on sandpaper. Okay, so I'm sure my review sounds incredibly sensationalized, possibly fabricated and maybe even a little ridiculous. Well I assure you, I am just a regular guy and a genuine owner of a 2017 Shadow Black RS2 pkg. Focus RS. I bought into the RS hype but I prepared myself for the possibility of being underwhelmed. Welp I'm not, quite the contrary, I am pleasantly shocked! How do they put so much power and performance in a four cylinder for around 40k? I don't really know but I know that I am glad I got one before they stop making them next year (2018) As for the durability and reliability, I obviously can not speak for that, I only have about 2000 miles on it so far but I bought the 100000 mile extended warranty. And aside from driving it like I stole it, for which it was made and intended, I will maintain and baby it like it was a 2 million dollar Bugatti. And hopefully it will last a long long time. But I'll definitely make some updates as time and miles pass. So.. if you're looking at the Hyperhatch class, you're probably checking out the Golf R, Type R, WRX Sti ( And so many more in the European market. Lucky! ) these are all super cool cars and I can't see you going wrong with any of them. But I can only speak for the RS.. If you're considering the Focus RS.. Yeah, It's freaking Awesome! It's a great time for the sports car enthusiast. Enjoy!
New Focus RS owner
A Morse,08/04/2018
Very fast, great handling, and very driver engaging car. It drives like a car that I have always dreamed of driving. If you are debating if you want one or not, go drive it and you will see that it is a great car.
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Features & Specs

MSRP
$36,120
MPG
19 city / 25 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed manual
Gas
350 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat4 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover11.1%

2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback for Sale

Ford Focus RS 2017 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
13,203 miles
Used 2017
Ford Focus RS
Base
(2)
Miller's Apple Valley Chevrolet
39.7 mi away
List$33,899
Est.Loan: $617/mo
Fair Deal!Fair Deal!
View Details
Dealer Notes
All Around champ!! All Wheel Drive!!!AWD** This noteworthy Vehicle seeks the right match.. Safety equipment includes: ABS, Xenon headlights, Traction control, Passenger Airbag, Curtain airbags...Other features include: Bluetooth, Power locks, Power windows, Manual Transmission, Turbo...
Ford Focus RS 2017 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
New 2017
Ford Focus RS
Base
(4)
Prince Frederick Ford
59.3 mi away
MSRP$42,070
Est.Loan: $725/mo
Fair Deal!Fair Deal!
View Details
Ford Focus RS 2017 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
17,072 miles
Used 2017
Ford Focus RS
Base
(2)
Lexington Park Ford Lincoln
76.6 mi away
List$35,614
Est.Loan: $648/mo
View Details
Dealer Notes
2017 Ford Focus RS AWD Stealth Gray 2.3L GTDIFast Stress Free Car Buying! That's how we ROLL! Visit us on the web at lexingtonparkford.com or lexingtonparklincoln.com or call us at 1-301-863-8111.

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More about the 2017 Ford Focus RS

Just when it seemed as though "pocket rockets" — small, powerful, comparatively inexpensive cars with a lot of power — couldn't get any better, here comes the 2017 Ford Focus RS. Though it resembles the standard Ford Focus on which it's based, the Focus RS is a serious performance car, the automotive personification of a wolf in sheep's clothing.

It isn't as though the Focus line didn't already have a performance model. The Focus ST, with 252 horsepower, has already won our acclaim as a fast, fun car with practical appeal. But the Focus RS is a different animal, much more dedicated to performance, to some extent at the expense of practicality.

The Focus RS sports 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine that's been turbocharged to put out a muscle-car-worthy 350 horsepower. To make sure all of that power can be put to use and kept under control, Ford has fitted the Focus RS with a sophisticated all-wheel-drive system that makes use of electrically controlled differentials. All that means the Focus RS goes from zero to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds. To counteract the blistering acceleration, stopping duty is down to high-performance brakes that resist fade even after prolonged abuse. Adjustable suspension dampers and fat Michelin tires make sure the car stays planted.

Fortunately, buyers don't have to sacrifice practicality or modern amenities for the sake of performance. Inside, the Focus RS comes standard with Ford's Sync 3 system — a marked improvement over Ford's older Sync systems — which allows for features including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, GPS, voice commands and other conveniences. There's a powerful 10-speaker sound system and racing-style seats with a lot of side bolstering. There are also the inherent Focus features such as a roomy hidden compartment beneath the floor of the trunk and a rear seat that can both accommodate adults and fold flat to make space for larger cargo.

That said, the Focus RS is not without drawbacks. It isn't cheap, for one. And this is a complex, moderately high-strung car that can be rough-riding on all but the smoothest roads. The only transmission offered is a six-speed manual; if you want an automatic, you'll have to look elsewhere. But the appeal of the Focus RS is undeniable. If you want the best in hot-hatch performance, let Edmunds help you find just the 2017 Ford Focus RS that you're looking for.

2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback Overview

The 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback is offered in the following styles: 4dr Hatchback AWD (2.3L 4cyl Turbo 6M).

What do people think of the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 Focus RS Hatchback 5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 Focus RS Hatchback.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 Focus RS Hatchback featuring deep dives into trim levels including Base, etc. with careful analysis around pricing, features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving and performance. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Read our full review of the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback here.
Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on new cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchbacks are available in my area?

2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback Listings and Inventory

There are currently 2 new 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchbacks listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $40,990 and mileage as low as 5 miles. Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback. Then select Edmunds special offers, perks, deals, and incentives to contact the dealer of your choice and save up to $3,000 on a new, used or CPO 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback available from a dealership near you.

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Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including all models of the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback and all available trim types: Base. Rich, trim-level features & specs and options data tracked for the 2017 Ford Focus RS Hatchback include (but are not limited to): MSRP, available incentives and deals, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (interior and exterior color, upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, cruise control, parking assistance, lane sensing, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy and MPG (city, highway, and combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (interior cabin space, vehicle length and width, seating capacity, cargo space). Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds expert review, safety rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2017 Ford Focus RS?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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