Ford Adds Shouty Tech To New Focus

What's the worst thing about owning a hot hatch? Probably the fact that when your mate (who owns an enormous V8 sedan) comes for a ride with you, they'll be underwhelmed by the relative purr that your car makes compared to theirs. Ford Australia has you covered with its new hatchbacks, which actually come with speaker kit designed to amplify the engine noise made by your diminutive sports hatch.

Ford Australia announced the new Ford Focus ST sport hatchback for Australia yesterday, but by far the most interesting thing about the announcement was that Ford's sound symposer will be bolted onto the cars.

Ford describes the symposer as a device that takes noise generated from the car's air intake system and funnels them straight into the passenger compartment so that your car sounds fierce as you duck and weave around the streets. The sound tube valve on the Focus is controlled by the driver's engine speed, accelerator pedal position and gear selection.

The Focus ST sports a 2-litre, 184 kw engine complete with green-friendly Ecoboost features that means it sips 7.4 litres per 100km. The car will go on sale locally in October.



    You mean just like the XR5 it replaces?

    Does it funnel the actual sound through the passanger compartment or Just mimic the sound through the stereo system? if its mimicing the sound then the BMW M5 is already doing this.

      As I understand it, it funnels the sound rather than mimics it. I think the M5 replicating its own sound inside the cabin is ridiculous.

    So lame.

    My 92 Excel got 7 l/100km, and it was noisy as fock.

      Yes, but your 7 l/100km got you 60kW, not 184kW. i.e. Focus ST uses fuel 300% more efficiently than your Excel could.

        Ummm uses 300% more fuel? Are you an idiot? They both use 7L/100Km. It produces 300(ish)% of the power of the Excel, doesn't use 300% of the fuel to do it.

          Dude, read MotorMouth's comment again. You're saying the same thing he is.

        but they are both front whell drive, hello cataostrophic understeer.

          Sure, if you haven't got a clue how to drive. ;)

          Most cars in this category are front wheel drive... Doesn't really make too much of a difference in this country, unless you live in Cooma or plan to drive above the posted limits.

    ill keep my green unfriendly v8 thanks. it doesnt need a symposer.

    Plenty of cars do this already. Toyota's GT86 has this as well as the Mazda MPS3 I think.

      The 86's system is entirely passive, it's done with tubes. You could argue the enhanced cabin sound of the 86 is natural while this is artificial.

      I think they're both a bit silly and a Toyota salesman agreed with me.

    Previous Focus models (XR5 turbo in Oz) had this - as does mine. Nothing new.

      Does it? I own a '06 XR5 and I didnt know that they had this?

    Checking the date..
    Nope, it's not April 1.
    This has got to be the most ridiculous idea in the history of motor vehicles.
    Almost up there with the requirement for having someone walking in front of the first motor-carriages with a lamp because people were still used to slow moving horses.
    Actually, on second thought, it's even dafter.

    "sym", as in "simpleton" (poetic license) + "poser" = symposer That said, there is nothing more intoxicating than to hear a great engine sound while you are driving. When I had my Alfa, I drove much faster when I wasn't listening to music, simply because I could hear the engine. My current car has the most uninspiring engine sound imaginable.

    Gotta feel sorry for the modern generation, we had all the fun,(remember the end of the eighties) LOUD intakes and LOUD exhausts , rotaries, V8's , sixes, fours and bikes that near made your ears bleed...... then came the "Boombox mobeels" later on, and shortly after that the crackdowns began ...... now it's plumbed in-car ?

    How sad is this idea? What happens when we run out of oil and all vehicles are electric? Fake exhaust noises? Won't happen in my life time but will happen.

      That already happens. The Fisker Karma pipes V8 engine noise through the stereo.

        From my understanding the karma does not, its still got the electric hum within the cabin.

      This is exactly what will happen. Sound engineers are already working on it with the same fervour as the guys who craft "new-car smells" - I'm not joking.

    Its similar to the one on the XR5, but its now active, rather than just passive - i.e. when the car thinks you are giving it a bit of stick, it will crank up the effect, and when you are just cruising it will dial it back.

    I realise once again that I am not a car person. This idea just seems incredibly stupid to me. Why would anybody want the interior of their car to be noisier than it needed to be?

    Engine sounds do nothing for me.

      That would be "M" for Margaret, then, would it?

        You got me. I have no interest in cars, and therefore have a vagina.

        My elaborate plan is foiled.

          The noise the engine makes can be beneficial to a good driver. It provides valuable feedback of what your engine is doing.

    Nothing new. The current VW Polo GTI has what they call a sound actuator. This vid shows it with it on and off (the on/off funtion is an aftermarket feature)

    Still FWD fail hah.

    Am i alone in wanting to listen to music in my car and not engine noise?

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