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Old 09-07-2012, 09:50 AM   #1
hamiltonian
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Open Grill Available?

Hello everyone. This is my first post on Focus Fanatics. I've tried searching, but did not come up with a definitive answer to this question:

Does any aftermarket source sell open "mesh" type grill inserts for the 3rd generation? I ask because I've ordered an Oxford White Focus ST and I'd like eventually to swap the "catfish" front end / bumper/grill with the standard Focus front end, and then add some more aggressive touches -- something like this:



However, it looks like the standard Focus grill is mostly closed, so simply swapping them could lead to air flow issues with the intercooler on the ST. So I'm really hoping there are aftermarket inserts that allow more air flow.

Thanks!


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Old 09-07-2012, 09:56 AM   #2
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You could probably make it work, but it would require some modding to the standard grill to allow better airflow, be the guinea pig and find out for everybody else.
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Old 09-07-2012, 09:58 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hamiltonian View Post
Hello everyone. This is my first post on Focus Fanatics. I've tried searching, but did not come up with a definitive answer to this question:

Does any aftermarket source sell open "mesh" type grill inserts for the 3rd generation? I ask because I've ordered an Oxford White Focus ST and I'd like eventually to swap the "catfish" front end / bumper/grill with the standard Focus front end, and then add some more aggressive touches -- something like this:



However, it looks like the standard Focus grill is mostly closed, so simply swapping them could lead to air flow issues with the intercooler on the ST. So I'm really hoping there are aftermarket inserts that allow more air flow.

Thanks!
I'm not aware of any wide open plastic mesh grille inserts that just slot in, but if you look closely at the ST grille openings you'll see that they precisely mimic that of the standard car. The top is shrouded in for the air intake, and the lower grille area is not much more open if at all, due to the fact that the car is designed to also use the exact same grille shuttter system to close off the grill at higher speeds when there is an excess of air pressure, as well as to help warm up the intercooler/ turbo/ powertrain when its really cold outside for better efficiency.
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:06 AM   #4
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I didn't realize the standard grill also had active shutters. Where are they located on the Focus SE/SEL?

The very bottom of the two bumpers appear different, with the ST having a bigger opening and horizontal vanes to direct air to the IC.

I guess I'll have to figure this out once my ST arrives. Hopefully, I can find Focus bumper at a parts recycler to play around with this. I think the ST with the SE front would be a great combination.
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:11 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hamiltonian View Post
I didn't realize the standard grill also had active shutters. Where are they located on the Focus SE/SEL?

The very bottom of the two bumpers appear different, with the ST having a bigger opening and horizontal vanes to direct air to the IC.

I guess I'll have to figure this out once my ST arrives. Hopefully, I can find Focus bumper at a parts recycler to play around with this. I think the ST with the SE front would be a great combination.
Early Job 1 2012 cars didn't have them across the board, but the grille openings didn't change on the standard 2012-2013 cars. They were made standard on late Job 1 builds and all Job 2 2012 (after 3/5/12) builds. They are located in the lower center portion of the grille opening.
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:26 AM   #6
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For a turbo car with the intercooler front mounted that actually is a small opening... the Mazdaspeed 3 I had before my Focus had a MUCH bigger front grill and it had a top mounted IC from the factory.

I'm sure at some point there will be an aftermarket grill made with a bigger opening in the front, but as it sits now... if suss is correct and the openings really aren't different, you should have no issues swapping.

Although to be on the safe side... popping out the side grill pieces and using a dremel to open up some more holes would be a good idea, since they're there for show, making them functional could add that extra horizontal space the ST looks like it has.
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:46 AM   #7
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For a turbo car with the intercooler front mounted that actually is a small opening... the Mazdaspeed 3 I had before my Focus had a MUCH bigger front grill and it had a top mounted IC from the factory.

I'm sure at some point there will be an aftermarket grill made with a bigger opening in the front, but as it sits now... if suss is correct and the openings really aren't different, you should have no issues swapping.

Although to be on the safe side... popping out the side grill pieces and using a dremel to open up some more holes would be a good idea, since they're there for show, making them functional could add that extra horizontal space the ST looks like it has.
I would recommend looking closely at the ST grille, but it doesn't appear to have a larger opening, despite looking like it should.

If the openings are the same and it seems to mirror the standard grille for the upper opening, a large closed center section and then the open lower section where the grille shutter system would sit behind. Now if some one could demonstrate this by putting the images of the lower grille side by side (where you could see what was actually open it may prove this to be the case.
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:59 AM   #8
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I would recommend looking closely at the ST grille, but it doesn't appear to have a larger opening, despite looking like it should.

If the openings are the same and it seems to mirror the standard grille for the upper opening, a large closed center section and then the open lower section where the grille shutter system would sit behind. Now if some one could demonstrate this by putting the images of the lower grille side by side (where you could see what was actually open it may prove this to be the case.
Just did a google search and every image of the ST I found that was a production model, like our model had an opening at the top of the grill for the intake, and an opening near the bottom, not very big, like ours, for the intercooler/radiator. But even though it's height is similar... the grill on the ST is wider than our center portion, so it will be a bit bigger. As I stated, easiest way to do it with a standard bumper would be to take a dremel to the side grill pieces and make them functional.

That said, there IS a larger opening at the very bottom of the grill, where they have a much wider air dam than the traditional Focus' small 4 holes.
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Old 09-07-2012, 11:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by feta_mgp View Post
Just did a google search and every image of the ST I found that was a production model, like our model had an opening at the top of the grill for the intake, and an opening near the bottom, not very big, like ours, for the intercooler/radiator. But even though it's height is similar... the grill on the ST is wider than our center portion, so it will be a bit bigger. As I stated, easiest way to do it with a standard bumper would be to take a dremel to the side grill pieces and make them functional.

That said, there IS a larger opening at the very bottom of the grill, where they have a much wider air dam than the traditional Focus' small 4 holes.
Yes, the lower opening above the under tray but on top of the air dam is slightly more open, now how much of an effect on the cooling this is, I'm not entirely sure.

However I'm sure that if you had really wanted to put the standard bumper cover and grille panels on the car instead of the ST specific pieces you will have to either open the triangular grilles or dremel holes in the lower air dam to mimic the ST.

The remainder of the air induction portions of the grilles are the same just styled to look differently.

The main bulk of the air currently is coming in through the lower grille, between the area blocked occasionally by the shutter system and the lower openings in the front bumper cover/ air dam.
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Old 09-07-2012, 11:07 AM   #10
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Never really noticed but IMO the standard front end looks a bit more aggressive than the ST>
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