- We wave goodbye to the Focus ST Estate
- Ownership has been an enjoyable experience
- Proved itself as a great all-rounder
The time has come to hand the keys back to our Ford Focus ST Estate. We’ve had our ups and downs over the six months we’ve had the car, but overall it’s been an enjoyable experience.
Although being an estate makes it seriously practical, the lasting impression from the ST is one of a seriously high performance car.
Its 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine, resplendent with 247bhp, meant 62mph is possible from a standstill in just 6.5 seconds. It sounds fantastic too, with the rorty engine note piped into the cabin for an extra feeling of sportiness.
Of course, having to cope with all that horsepower through the front wheels means some clever electronic gadgetry is employed to keep you on the road and facing in the right direction. It’s a good job too, because if you turn the traction and stability control off altogether it becomes quite unruly.
The upshot of all this safety kit is that the ST handles incredibly well indeed. It’ll not become flustered through corners no matter how hard you push it. Ride quality isn’t so good, but for a car which goes around corners like this it could be a whole lot worse.
Another slight gripe was the fuel economy. It was doing around 29mpg when driven carefully, and in an office full of people used to driving economical diesel cars that didn’t seem particularly good. In isolation though it’s pretty impressive when you remember just how fast the car is.
As an estate, the Focus does make a fairly practical car. It has 476 litres of boot space, which is considerably larger than the regular hatchbacks 316 litres. It’ll seat four adults in relative comfort, although a fifth would be quite a squeeze.
Since we spend quite a lot of time at airports, the fact that our Focus was seriously brightly painted meant it was always easy to pick out among the hum-drum flock of grey company cars.
On longer journeys the seats really started to come into their own. Although of a sportier persuasion, they’re comfortable and supportive too so driving for hours really isn’t a problem.
The Focus is also packed with standard equipment, which means you’ve got a raft of technology on hand to make life easier. The voice-controlled SYNC system makes operating the multimedia system on the move an easy task, while all of the menus are clear and simple to use. There are probably a few too many buttons in the cabin, but we can forgive that for the sheer breadth of functions on hand.
To conclude, the Focus found serious favour in the office. Despite its flaws, it was a great all-rounder which never failed to raise a smile.
Total mileage: 11,930 miles
Average mpg: 28.9mpg (ind.)