The Ford Focus RS is already approaching 12,500 miles (and therefore its first service).
It has been accruing miles rapidly largely because a couple of colleagues have long-distance commutes but also because most of the office still wants a go. It seems to make no difference what they’re currently driving, what sort of cars they usually like or even what kind of journey they’re doing: people want a go in the Focus RS.
Same goes for the general public. Certainly, the Nitrous Blue paint helps, but there have already been plenty of occasions where people have pointed, waved or flashed their headlights. The inevitable petrol station conversations (the average dipped below 30mpg last time I looked) have happened, too, with fans keen to know every detail.
What to tell them? Broadly positive news, in fact. Without any autumnal showers, the four-wheel drive system hasn’t been tested yet, but on dry roads it shows great poise, grip and agility for something so heavy. This is on the standard Michelin Pilot Super Sports, too. It must feel staggering on the optional Cup 2s from the same maker. Maybe one to investigate soon.
The Focus is returning to Ford for its yearly (or 12,500-mile) check-up, but we decided to ring a few dealers to see what the work would cost. For what amounts to an oil and filter change with a vehicle inspection, the variance in price was incredible.
At the Guildford FordStore – one of the specialist dealers where you have to go to buy a Focus RS, a Vignale or a Mustang – the price was £423, including 12 months’ AA breakdown cover. But at the Ipswich FordStore, we were quoted £245 for exactly the same package. At a regular Ford dealer (Stoneacre Halifax), that dropped to £175 without the breakdown cover and Hatwell Ford Abingdon asked £190 for the same. So you don’t have to return to a FordStore for a service and it’s well worth shopping around.