2022 Ford Focus ST brings upgrades, new look

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Ford Focus ST 2022 facelift 1

Ford has given the Focus hatchback a refresh for 2021, with a new design and an improved infotainment suite.

Ford has unveiled a facelift to the 2022 Focus, including the Focus ST hot hatch.

Shown for the first time in Europe, the facelifted ST will arrive in Australia Q2 2022.

For the greater range (many of which are not sold in Australia) the re-structured range does away with the luxurious Focus Vignale – instead, Vignale now refers to a trim package that can be specified with Titanium, Active and ST-Line cars, bringing additional equipment and bespoke design touches inside and out.

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2022 Focus ST in detail

The Focus ST hot-hatch has also been refreshed as part of the facelift. The front-end design is shared with the ST-Line model, but the fully-fledged ST receives a satin grey finish for the lower vent inserts and honeycomb grille mesh. The redesigned alloy wheels are painted in a similar hue, with 18-inch items as standard and larger 19-inch wheels available as an option. A set of revised taillights, and a new ‘Mean Green’ paint colour, complete the exterior makeover.

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Inside, the Focus ST ditches the Recaro seats of the outgoing car, replacing them with in-house 14-way adjustable Ford Performance seats. Under the bonnet, the same 2.3-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine remains, delivering 206kW and 420Nm of torque. This is mated to either a six-speed manual or a torque converter automatic gearbox, controlled by paddle shifters mounted to the steering wheel. Power is put to the tarmac through an electronic limited-slip differential.

First deliveries are scheduled for Q2 2022 and pricing will be announced closer to its Australian launch.

SYNC 4 infotainment system

The updated Focus can be specified with Ford’s latest infotainment suite, called SYNC 4, and is standard in the Focus ST. The system is operated via a new 13.2-inch central touchscreen, which features wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. The climate functions are now embedded within the touchscreen, with the physical controls of the current car being removed for a cleaner dashboard design.

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Advanced speech recognition allows the driver to operate media functions, navigation and climate settings through voice control if preferred, and the car’s internet integration allows weather information to be relayed to those on board. The FordPass smartphone app also allows the user to connect to their car remotely to check fuel levels and oil life, for example. An alert system will notify the user of any attempt to enter the vehicle, too.

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SYNC 4 benefits from a trial subscription to Ford’s Connected Navigation (Australian details to be confirmed closer to the Focus ST launch), which includes live traffic and weather updates, and the new Focus is also compatible with the brand’s Power-Up system. This enables improved vehicle features over time through software updates, which can be carried out in the background or during scheduled periods with little or no user intervention.

2022 Focus facelift

At the front, the Focus adopts Ford’s new family face, as already previewed by the recently unveiled, facelifted Fiesta. The blue oval badge is now housed within a larger, more rounded front grille, as opposed to above it. The grille itself receives a chrome surround and horizontal bars, and the nose of the car has been raised for added road presence.

This new grille sits between with a pair of slimmer, more aggressive headlight clusters, which feature a new running light signature. Full LED headlights are standard, along with automatic high-beam control and Ford’s Maneuvering Light system, which improves visibility while parking, for example. Optional Dynamic Pixel LED headlights bring additional features, such as a glare-free high beam that alters the light pattern to avoid blinding oncoming cars.

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Elsewhere, the lower front bumper has also been resculpted with a new side-vent arrangement, and at the rear, the optional upgraded LED tail lights gain a darker finish, with a new running light design. Sporty ST-Line models receive a gloss black honeycomb mesh grille, along with a lower bumper with satin silver inserts. Extended side skirts, a rear spoiler and a black diffuser also feature.

The off-road inspired Focus Active gets rugged design cues such as protective plastic body cladding and a raised ride height, along with vertical grille bars and a restyled lower front bumper.

The luxurious Vignale package adds new interior trims and satin-finished upper grille bars and side vents. Exclusive alloy wheel designs are also available with Vignale models, with the Focus receiving five new wheel designs across the line-up.

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2022 Focus safety

In addition to the outgoing car’s array of driver assistance systems, the refreshed Focus gains Blind Spot Assist, which can apply counter-steering to avoid hitting another vehicle when changing lanes. The system operates from 64 to 200km/h, and scans other vehicles from up to 28 metres away. The car’s blind-spot monitoring can also operate when towing a trailer, once the driver has specified its length and width in the infotainment system.

Also new is Intersection Assist, which uses the Focus’s forward-facing camera and radar to detect oncoming vehicles in parallel lanes. At up to 28km/h, the car will automatically apply the brakes if moving into the path of an oncoming vehicle at a junction, for instance. Intersection Assist can also function where there are no road markings, and at night – provided the headlights are switched on.

Active emergency braking, speed sign recognition and adaptive cruise control with ‘stop and go’ functionality also feature alongside lane-centring assist. Fully automated parking manoeuvres are possible, too, with Ford’s Active Park Assist 2 taking control of steering, braking, acceleration and gear selection. The facelifted Focus also receives Rear Occupant Alert, which alerts the driver to check the rear seats for children or pets at the end of a journey, if the rear doors have been opened.

Yousuf Ashraf

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