Well now, in February, the owner of the business asked me what car I would like as a demonstrator. So, what did I choose, I chose the Ford Focus, ST2, 181 hatch back. Why, I hear you ask, surely, it’s a hard ride for a man of your advancing years, surely those seats are hard on your back, what about the fuel economy? Isn’t it a bit flash? There are so many reasons or better, misconceptions regarding the Focus ST2, I thought that I had better put them to rest.
First, the seats are truly fantastic. I have had issues with my back, on and off, but the support they give is excellent. The Recaro half leather seats are also embossed with the ST logo and contrasting red stitching and look great. The ride is firmer, but I would in no way say it’s hard. What I would say, is that it holds the road and bends like it’s on rails. Over the past snowy disruption when the beast from the east visited us, the ST2 never let me down. It’s not 4WD, but it did grip very well.
The specification is plentiful in the ST2 with 8” Sync display, half leather Recaro seats, temperature control, ambient lighting, electric windows and mirrors, Bluetooth and voice control etc, etc. In other words, everything you would wish for in a new car. One other thing to mention, is the build quality. The ST2 just seems so well put together. The quality of the materials are extremely high and wherever you touch, feels top notch and well made.
What does amaze me, is the brilliant fuel economy on what is basically a sports hatch. I reckon that even with my heavy right foot, I am getting 50+ MPG, which is superb. I have been lucky enough to drive several quick cars over my 23 years in the trade and the ST2, doesn’t disappoint on any level. The acceleration is blistering and does in truth take some mastering, or those front wheels will spin, but when you get the hang of it, that smile will just settle on your face. What does make the ST2 stand out when comparing it to similar vehicles from different manufacturers, is that as well as being a wolf in sheep’s clothing, it is a very liveable vehicle for normal day to day driving.
When I say a wolf in sheep’s clothing, I may be doing the ST2 a disservice, as when you look closely, it simply looks awesome. The rear centre exhaust system gives it away from the rear, those beautiful 18” Rock metallic alloy wheels from the side and that slightly larger, black grill from the front, all point to the heritage of the ST2. But, those styling cues are subtle and that’s to the ST2s benefit.
Would I buy one, I must admit, I would. Although even after over €8,000 off our demonstrator, at a price of €34,995, it’s a lot of hard earned cash. What I did find out this morning was, just how affordable it was when funded on a PCP. With a cash or part exchange deposit of €6,000, you get payments of €483,73 over 36 months, with a settlement figure at the end of €15,397.80. This is at the great rate of only 5.9% APR, which is also fixed for the entire term. A full breakdown or a personal quotation is available on request and as always, finance is subject to status and credit bureau checks.
So, come down to Barlo Motors here in Thurles and take a test drive in a car that is not just a tool to get you from A to B, it’s a car that will put some of the fun back into your motoring. Thank you & see you soon. James Mc Vicker, Sales Manager, Barlo Motors, Thurles.