It’s an inescapable fact that, after decades of success and desirability within the genre, the Ford-badged hot hatch is an endangered species. So the new Track Pack for the Focus ST is an important development, taking a fun-focused model that represents the dusk of an era and sharpening it up a bit.

detailed wheel shot

Handling Alterations

Hot on the heels of the ST’s midlife update, and building on the success of the limited-edition Focus ST Edition (which came equipped with KW coilovers, lightweight flow-formed wheels and an e-LSD), the Track Pack bundle is a £3,000 package which amps up both the fleet-footedness and the styling of the ST. It comprises a set of two-way adjustable coilovers, manually tweakable for compression and rebound; the ride height is also adjustable, and comes from the showroom set at 10mm lower than stock.

The brakes are four-pot Brembos at the front with larger 363mm discs, and these sit behind flow-formed alloys – you can see that many lessons were learned from the Edition. The rims are 19” in diameter, saving a full 10% in weight over the regular ST’s wheels, and shod in Pirelli P Zero Corsas rather than the standard-issue Michelins.

rear of Focus ST Track Pack

Visual Alterations

To match the gloss black wheels, you’ll also find Agate Black paint on the roof, rear spoiler, diffuser and mirrors. So it all adds up to a package that performs more aggressively, and looks like it does too. Plus – three grand for all of that extra high-end kit? That sounds like bloody good value, doesn’t it? And it’s worth noting that Ford had a keen hot hatch ethos in mind when developing this desirable recipe – the Track Pack can only be optioned on manual hatchback versions of the Focus, you won’t be able to add it to an estate or an auto.

Focus ST Track Pack engine bay


In terms of the powertrain, it’s all business as usual (as you’d expect, as the Track Pack is essentially an add-on), although that’s no bad thing as it’s a formidable package already. The 2.3-litre turbo four-pot serves up 276bhp, an iconic set of digits for anybody who grew up playing Gran Turismo in the nineties, with a decent diff ensuring that it doesn’t all get spun away. We’re talking 0-62mph in 5.7s and a top whack of 155mph; impressively, it also boasts mpg in the mid-thirties, although that’s only if you’re not driving it like your hair’s on fire. Call the economy a sweetener, a representative of possibilities – this car can be sensible if you want it to. But realistically, you’re not going to buy a car with ‘Track Pack’ in the name if sensibleness is high up your list of priorities.

interior of Focus ST Track Pack

What is it like to drive?

So, with all of these improvements through the chassis, how does it stack up against a regular ST? You’ll no doubt be intrigued to learn that it’s remarkably different. The familiarity of the cabin is extremely welcoming, and the Performance seats are outstanding, but it’s instantly obvious that the way this car handles is sharper, more intense; the ride is noticeably stiffer, but not in that crashy way you’d find on a set of cheapo budget coilovers – the quality Ford Performance units fitted to the Track Pack absorb bumps and potholes instead of ricocheting off them, so the stiffness becomes a characteristic of faster driving rather than an impediment to it. Equally pleasing to note is that the faster you go, the better the ride feels…

The brakes are biblically good too – there was nothing really wrong with the standard ST stoppers, but the Brembos here are markedly more insistent, the pedal firmer, and that extra confidence in stopping power builds more confidence in the car as a whole. Give the Focus an instruction and it reacts, scalpel-sharp and instinctive. And that’s where we reach the real crux of the matter: this car feels like an old-school analogue hot hatch. Sure, it’s got the big dash screens and the clever diff and whatnot, but it doesn’t feel sanitised and over-assisted like you might find in an Audi RS or a hot Golf. When you make good progress down a fun road, the Focus makes you feel like it was all your own work. It flatters you, it doesn’t feel like you’ve cheated.


The significance of this car stretches way beyond its improved specification or heightened capabilities. It’s about marking the closing chapter of something that’s close to all of our hearts, and doing so with style and flair. When people talk about Ford hot hatches, it’s natural to conjure up images of the Escort RS Turbo, the Fiesta XR2, the Focus RS… and has the Focus ST Track Pack earned the right to be considered among such a list of legends? Well, pathos alone dictates that it must; the swansong nature of this car means it’ll always be fondly remembered. Fortunately, it just so happens that it’s also an extraordinarily good hot hatch.