Gisteren 24 november, precies 30 jaar geleden bracht Ford een PR bericht uit, dat je vanaf dat moment uit moest kijken op de Britse wegen, toen werd een Sierra RS Cosworth aan de kant gezet door een Politie RS200, een serieuze krachtpatser uit die tijd, en een dikke publiciteitsstunt.
Nu 30 jaar later vieren ze dit heugelijke feit exact op dezelfde weg en plek, met een 2016 Focus RS compleet in ‘Police’ tenue die de RS200 fictief op de bon slingert.
Pistonheads legt de feiten van beide Fast Ford’s naast elkaar, waardevast of een subliem museumstuk?
Ford Focus RS ‘does an RS200’
30 years ago today (November 24), Ford issued a PR image that’s today a bit of a cult shot: an RS200 in police livery ‘pulling over’ a Sierra RS Cosworth (in Moonstone). To celebrate this inspired piece of publicity, it’s now replicated the shot – with a Focus RS taking the place of the RS200.
Brilliantly, Ford’s even issued a press release ’typed’ in Courier that mimics the original hard copy posted out to journos, as was the way in those pre-email days.
How could we resist making a few comparisons? The period release, for example, tells us an RS200 cost £50,000 in 1986. Today, a Focus RS is £31,250, so is a comparable bargain. Even better than that: factor in inflation and today’s price of the RS200 is a hefty £132,000. Yikes. It produced a scant 250hp too, remember. The Focus RS puts out 350hp.
Today’s Focus RS is, however, a rare example of modern-day upsizing. The RS200 had a 1.8-litre turbo four, while the Focus RS has a 2.3-litre banger. Both are four-wheel drive though, and both run 0-60mph in under 5.0 seconds. That figure must have seemed other-worldly in 1986. Even today, it’s going some.
Incidentally, neither would have any trouble pulling that Cossie. With a meagre 204hp from its ultra-gravelly 2.0-litre Cosworth YBD lump, it could only do 0-60mph in 6.5 seconds. Not only is that matched by the Focus ST, it’s also barely ahead of a Fiesta ST200. Not something a period Escort XR3i (9.5 seconds) or Fiesta XR2 (9.3 seconds) could ever hope to claim…
Ford reminds us Ghia of Turin designed the RS200, while Ford of Europe’s Ernesto Rupar did the Focus. Motorsport designers Tony Southgate (Jaguar XKR-9, XJR-12 and umpteen others) and John Wheeler developed the RS200, while Ford Performance chief engineer Tyrone Johnson did the Focus RS. Which, unlike the RS200 quips Ford, has rear seats, rear doors and “a boot large enough for traffic cones”.
As with the RS200 though, the Focus RS is unlikely to find its way onto cop car forces, mainly because customer car demand is so fierce. But in pointing out how many ‘normal’ Fords are on police duty, Ford has revealed it’s not quite the, ahem, police car ‘force’ it once was. In 1986, there were 12,000 police Fords, including Sierra XR4x4s and Granadas. Today? Just 1,500, comprising mainstream stuff plus the rather less potentially-classic Kuga and Ranger.
Never mind those numbers, focus on the numbers that matter. A Focus RS today is as quick as an RS200 was three decades ago, while saving you the equivalent of £105,000 in the process. How’s that for progress?
Source | Pistonheads.com & Ford.co.uk