The UK loves fast Fords to an incredible degree, to the point that the cult of RS Cosworth has become something just shy of a full-blown automotive religion. Cars like the Mexico, RS1800, and the Sierra and Escort Cosworth have become part of petrolhead folklore, all underpinned by the RS sub-brand's constant, unbroken lineage. Ford has always capitalised on this in a big way, and many of its most recent RS (and more recently, ST) badged options have been real world beaters, including the Mk1,2 and 3 RS Focus, all of which have become darlings of the UK's tuning community.
RS and ST badged Fords have long been well supported by Forge Motorsport, and many of our most significant tuning packages have been used to great effect on some of the UK's fastest and most groundbreaking examples. With this in mind, and to underline just how well placed Forge is to cater for fast Fords, we've put together a short list of our recommended tuning parts and procedures.
1) Uprated Intercooler Kit, Mk2 Focus RS
Though adequate for standard cars with standard power, the cooling system found on the Mk2 Focus RS can be found somewhat lacking when it comes to pushing for greater power, hence why we developed a kit just for this model. The kit is significantly larger both in terms of size and thickness and this means that it boasts excellent thermal properties, in turn leading to notable improvements in performance - up to 15hp and 20 ft/lb. of torque in the mid range, as much as 8 hp and 10 ft/lb. at the top end.
Performance is a given then, but so too is clever design. Proof of this can be found in the manner in which the RS kit fits without masking the coolant radiator, meaning it won't result in an increase in coolant temperatures. The design means that fitment is a swift and simple affair, and installation can be completed without having to remove the front panel. The best bit? By reducing intake temperatures you're also reducing the amount of stress the engine's subjected to, so it's a win-win scenario.
2) Braided Brake Lines, Mk3 Focus RS
Cars like the Focus RS are capable of making power figure that, just a few short years, ago would've been the preserve of supercars, so it makes a massive deal of sense to spend some time uprating the car in question's braking system. This is true of the latest addition to the RS family, the much vaunted Mk3. While the OE braking system is certainly a powerful one, we're able to offer an uprated solution in the form of this braided brake line kit from our sister brand, Hosetechnik.
The Hosetechnik kit for the Mk3 RS is the perfect addition to this potent car, particularly if you're planning on a programme of power tuning further down the line. They're hand finished and come with Teflon-lined braided stainless steel bodies and custom machined stainless fittings, meaning they easily exceed all guidelines governing brake performance and can be counted on to perform well for years. They can even be ordered in one of 12 hard-wearing coloured PVC sleeves, allowing you to match your lines to the shade of your RS.
3) Forge Motorsport Short Shifter, MK3 Focus RS/ST250
Changing gear is one of those motoring experiences that just feels 'right,' something about being perfectly in synch with your car and being in total control of your progress along the road. We've offered a number of short shift kits for all manner of cars for several years now, and the Mk3 RS (it also fits the ST250) is just the latest to feel the benefit.
The Forge Motorsport short shift kit will make a huge difference to any car it's fitted to, as it allows for the movement required to select each gear to be toggled, effectively giving you huge control over how your car's transmission feels. The kit also comes with a slop reducing cap which when fitted over the shift cable knuckle eliminates movement, and gives the shift movement a more direct, satisfying feel.
4) Advanced Induction Kit, Mk3 Focus ST250
There's a very good chance that an induction kit of some variety was the first engine modification you ever carried out, and that's almost entirely down to how easy they are to fit! Our latest induction offering for the performance Ford enthusiast is this advanced induction kit, one developed in conjunction with the induction experts at Pipercross. The upshot is an induction kit for the ST which really does work, and in a quantifiable, performance-enhancing manner. Indeed, extensive testing on our own ST development car has revealed power gains of up to 17bhp, plus a pleasing induction roar, and all the usual benefits associated with aftermarket induction and filters, such as improved particle filtration and service life.
Fitment is a simple affair as we supply everything needed to install the kit, including a silicone hose to complete the induction run (select from a choice of blue or black), plus all required clamps and clear instructions.
5) Adjustable Alloy Wastegate Actuator, Mk3 Focus RS
As we've already discussed, the third iteration of the Focus RS is a stunning car and a bit of a game-changer in the fiercely contested hot hatch sector, but that doesn't mean that it isn't possible to improve it via the aftermarket! This adjustable alloy wastegate actuator is one of our most recently developed products for the Focus and one that will prove invaluable to anyone planning advanced ECU tuning in the near future.
Manufactured from the same high grade alloy that's become a hallmark of Forge products (and using our state of the art CNC machinery), the actuator is exquisitely designed and will provide years of faithful, dependable service. It comes fully assembled with a pre-determined actuator spring suitable for boost levels slightly above those of an OE RS, though we can assemble with a stronger spring upon request. This is a highly significant product and one that's all but essential for those cars running advanced boost setups, so get in touch and we'll advise as to ideal settings and spring strengths.
6) Boost Gauge And Fitting Kit, Mk3 Focus RS
Keeping a beady eye on your engine's boost levels is all but essential, and only becomes more so when you push said levels above and beyond those specified by the manufacturer, hence why we've developed a range of boost dials. The latest fitment option is for the Focus RS Mk3, a car which we anticipate being a key player in the UK's tuning landscape moving forward. The kit comes with everything required for an easy installation, including a boost tap and adaptor plate to enable fitment between the MAP sensor and the mounting surface, in turn allowing for a vacuum operated valve or boost gauge to be run in sequence.
7) Blow Off Valve (BOV), Mk2 Focus RS
The Mk2 Focus RS is has proven itself to be a highly capable car and one well suited to further tuning, though its OE-fitted BOV has been known to become something of a weak link on those cars running boost levels above those that Ford intended. This advanced BOV cures this at a stroke, while also fitting easily, looking fantastic and promising an increase in one of the most addictive noises associated with tuned forced induction engines, the 'roar' when you life off throttle!
Again, quality is at the very heart of everything Forge does, hence why the Mk2 RS BOV looks so stunning, its billet alloy construction marking it out as a suitably high-end product. Like all Forge hardware, the BOV is supplied as part of a comprehensive kit containing everything needed to fit it to the car in question, and we're also able to provide a spring tuning kit to ensure it's perfectly matched to your particular RS and its state of tune.
8) Silicone Boost Hose Kit, Mk2 Focus RS
Upgrading your turbo system using the Forge Motorsport range is certainly a wise investment, yet many otherwise clued-up individuals neglect to uprate components that are hugely significant yet all too often ignored, boost hoses. The Mk2 RS is well catered for in this respect, and if you've invested in other areas in order to improve the overall performance of your particular example then we'd highly recommend purchasing our hose kit, just to be on the safe side.
They might not be as visually stunning as our billet alloy offerings, yet our boost hoses are still manufactured to the highest of standards and come packed with innovative thinking. Proof of this can be found in their construction, namely the expansive inner liner of modified silicone contained within each, known as Flurosilicone. This specially developed inner liner means that Forge Motorsport boost hoses are suitable for use with modern long-life coolants, Organic Acid Technology coolants (O.A.T), or air containing oily mist. It also means that our hoses exceed OEM standards and will be able to shrug off the increased pressures associated with enhanced tuning of turbocharged engines.
9) Advanced Induction Kit, Mk2 Focus RS
Another induction solution, this time for the Mk2 Focus RS. Again, the factory-fitted component is fine for cars in a standard state of tune, but it can soon become a bottleneck and a restriction when the boost is increased or when other, more advanced hardware is bolted into place.
The Forge Motorsport kit for the Mk2 RS boasts improved induction properties thanks to its innovative design, with a large, low resistance filter that's capable of flowing a high volume, sited in a location that maximises the amount cold air available, plus a carefully tuned induction tract. It's a combination of parts that's proved very effective indeed, with gains of up to 9bhp over the OEM airbox, and all with no other modifications having been carried out. Even greater gains and jumps in efficiency can be achieved with cars running remapped ECUs, or those with uprated intercooler arrangements.
10) Race Spec Intercooler, Mk2 Focus ST225
The Mk2 Focus ST is a decidedly capable on track performer, a role that's seen it found many thousands of homes in the UK alone, though it does have one fault – inadequate cooling for its EcoBoost engine. We've worked hard to develop a complete, one-part solution to this potentially damaging situation, and the result is this race spec intercooler kit.
As the name suggests, this is a highly capable package that's intended for fitment to cars that will be driven in anger on a regular basis, and its comprehensive spec merely serves to underline this fact. It's capable of dramatically reducing inlet temperatures thanks to its sizable core and high-flow end tanks, both the result of an extensive development phase carried out 'in house' by our engineering team. Testing has revealed a consistent reduction in temperature, in excess of 35 degrees in cooling efficiency over the OE unit, while the intercooler's design means it can be installed without cutting or modification of the front panel or bumper.