Ford has given its Focus ST an update for 2022. But does it still drive as impressively as before? Jack Evans finds out

The Focus ST has been an ever-present sight in Ford's line-up for some time now. And though the popularity for crossovers has grown in recent years - we're looking at you, Puma - there's definitely still a place for the hot hatch. The Focus ST is just such a car, combining a very practical cabin and boot with a healthy dose of performance.

Recently updated with a new look and a fresh interior, this new ST could be the strongest offering yet. Let's take a look.


Exterior-wise we've got some subtle edits to the location of the Ford badge, while the interior now gets Ford's latest technology. The previous Focus ST's cabin was starting to look its age, that's for sure, so this comes as a welcome update.
Interestingly, this new Focus ST won't be available in estate layout as its predecessor was. So for now, it's just this hatchback version.

Great British Life: The new Ford Focus STThe new Ford Focus ST (Image: Ford/PA)


As before, the Focus ST uses a punchy 2.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine. With 276bhp and 420Nm of torque, it's got more than enough performance to hand, with Ford claiming 0-60mph in 5.5 seconds and a top speed of 155mph. With these figures, it's definitely on the money against rivals like the Hyundai i30 N and Volkswagen Golf GTI.

Where economy is concerned, the ST does reasonably well. Fuel consumption figures of 36.2mpg combined are about where you'd expect, and the same goes for CO2 figures of between 180 and 189g/km. For slightly better efficiency, you could opt for the seven-speed automatic version as opposed to the six-speed manual that we're testing here - though the economical advantage is slim.


The Focus ST has always been about a characterful drive and this has been retained for the latest version. The engine has loads of punch and though the steering can feel a little rubbery at times, it's super accurate. On occasions, the torque of the ST can foul the steering - pulling it one way or the other - but this does draw back to hot hatches of old.

Around town, it is firm, but this ebbs away into the background once you've gained a bit of speed. In fact, one of the most surprising areas that the ST shone through was on the motorway, where it's pleasantly refined and quiet, too. It adds an extra dimension to this sporty Focus and means that longer journeys aren't going to be accompanied by backache.

Great British Life: Inside the new Ford Focus STInside the new Ford Focus ST (Image: Ford/PA)


The cabin of the Focus ST is much the same as the one you'll find in the standard car, with its variety of pockets and bins a real plus point in terms of practicality. The buttons on the multifunction steering wheel are pleasantly robust in their action, while the overall lack of dashboard buttons gives it all a clean, uncluttered appearance.

When it comes to boot space, the ST offers up 358 litres of load area, which is about the same as you'll find in the Golf GTI but a little short of the 395-litre boot you'll find in the Hyundai i30 N. You can, of course, lower the rear seats to increase the boot volume should you need to.


The revamped Focus ST feels the same but improved. It's got that bristling-with-excitement driving style which characterised the ST when it first arrived, but it's still got a grown-up side that can handle longer motorway journeys without protest. The tweaks that have been made only help to sweeten the deal, with the sharper design ensuring that the ST remains looking the part.

That big new screen is a really striking edit to the ST appeal and gives it a far more tech-focused feel. As a result, the ST feels more compelling than ever.


Model: Ford Focus ST

Price as tested: £35,985

Engine: 2.5-litre turbocharged petrol

Power: 276bhp

Torque: 420Nm

0-60mph: 5.5 seconds

Top speed: 155mph

Economy: 36.2mpg

Emissions: 180-189g/km CO2