Ford Focus RS500 Grabs Sports Car of the Year Award

The Ford Focus RS500 was given the “Sportive de l’Annee” (Sports Car of the Year) award by the French magazine Echappement (exhaust). This is the fifth time Ford has won the title since the beginning of the contest in 1982.

The Focus RS500 continues where other historic Ford models left off. The Escort RS1600i has won the first edition of the contest followed by the Sierra Cosworth 4x4 in 1990, the Escort Cosworth in 1992 and the Focus RS in 2002. With five titles won, Ford is the most successful manufacturer to be voted Sports Car of the Year.

In 2009, the Focus RS was runner-up in the same category and was mostly voted by readers of the magazine. This year, the Focus RS500 has clearly dominated the competition in front of other sports cars such as the Renault Megane RS which ranked second, the Porsche Boxter Spyder or Audi RS5 which tied for third.

As accustomed, editors of the Echappement magazine came up with a list of sports cars aspiring to the title of Sports Car of the Year. Rally driver Brian Bouffier, Rookie of the Year 2010 winner, Mathieu Arzeno, along with three lucky readers of Echappement joined the journalists in testing the ten candidates on the roads of Ain and Beaujolais before tackling the corners of the Bresse circuit.

Given the differences of features and positioning of the cars involved, the purpose of the jury was not to make a direct confrontation but to choose the one posessing the greatest assets to obtain the title of Sports Car of the Year. The RS500 collected the majority of the votes after testing on the track as well as the from readers and in Internet polls.

The win comes as a reward for the development of Ford sports cars that are both efficient and accessible as illustrated by the long line of RS versions which began in 1970 with the famous Escort RS 1600.
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