German tuning specialist Loder1899 that usually specializes on much more expensive British beasts made by Jaguar and Aston Martin, has released an upgrade program for the much humbler Ford Focus RS 300hp performance hatchback. Its desire to jump on the RS tuning bandwagon is easy to understand. While the new vehicle is not as exclusive, it is so popular among younger enthusiasts that it will possibly give the German brand more exposure (and hopefully more orders) than the two aforementioned brands combined.
Not sure whether the move has something to do with the global financial meltdown that still seems to be unfolding around the world or the German tuner simply wants to hedge risks while getting yet another piece of a dwindling pie, but the fact that Europeans get yet another upgrade package for one of the last relative affordable performance hatchbacks really sounds great! After all, there is a huge market of warmed-up compact hatchbacks in Europe with literally thousands of young men and women looking for ways of upgrading their vehicles to higher specs and, what’s even more important, thousands of miles of winding roads with beautiful views and lots of spaces where one could have tons of fun (and where speedcams are not yet installed.)
Since the vehicle looks surprisingly cool with its stock aero-kit, the Loder1899 concentrated the best part of their efforts not on looks, but on performance side of the program (the neon green color that is shown on these promotional photos, too, looks unique to me, but that may be some extra tinkering by the brand’s resident Photoshop wizard.)
Equipping the hot hatch with a custom made intercooler, upgraded manifolds, and new free-flow sports exhaust system, the German tuner has managed to squeeze extra 65 hp and 58 lb-ft out of the stock 2.5-liter engine and so increased its top speed from 163 miles per hour to 168 mph. Not that the increase in speed is really dramatic, but it would be nice to have a car with more dynamics compared to a production variety.
Considering that even the base engine puts impressive strain on the stock limited slip differential, as well as on pistons that, too, seem to be left stock, I wish you a healthy amount of luck driving this upgraded monster of a hatch. Still, if you are not afraid of spending some cash on keeping the upgraded car in good working order, driving it on a closed track may actually be a lot of fun.
I assume that guys from Loder1899 also don’t really want to see you flying off the road, so they has also equipped the car with a new suspension system that lowered its ground clearance by 35 millimeters and also got a new set of wheels and ultralow-profile performance tires.
Pricing is yet to be revealed, but expect to pay €3000 to €5000 for the sports exhaust system and at least €3000 for the package of performance tires and alloy rims. Yes, that may sound a bit over the top considering the base price of a normal Ford Focus RS, but it surely beats the overall cost of buying and owning a Porsche Cayman, doesn’t it?
See also: 2007 Ford Focus Coupe-Cabriolet