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Old 07-16-2013, 03:42 PM   #1
cobie56
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In search of better handling and good ride

Hey all. I looked for a thread about this subject but did not locate one. If one exists I apologise in advance..

I have already installed a steeda rear sway bar and replaced the OEM Contis with Conti DWS ultra hi perf tires on my SEL with 17" wheels and have seen a noticable and positive difference in the car's handling with no decrease in ride quality.

In your opinion, would the install of the Titanium With Handling Pkg shocks and struts further better handling with little or no decrease in ride comfort? Or....are there aftermarket struts and shocks that fit the focus that would be a better choice?

Or.... Am I deceiving myself in thinking that replacing shocks and struts will help with these goals? I live in the northeast where winters are hard on roads and so do not want to lower the car or replace springs as ride quality is important on broken/bumpy roads. Another concern is this: I do not experience the clunking some of you do with the front suspension and am concerned that replacing the struts will cause the suspension to start clunking. Your opinion?

Thanks in advance for the feedback. Always great to read what is posted here.


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Old 07-16-2013, 03:52 PM   #2
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Test drive a Ti, or find somebody with one and drive or ride in theirs, I don't think the Ti is harsh, and the main differences are in the 18s for ride quality. What is your reasoning for better handling, autoX, just better day to day performance, do you do a lot of driving on twisty roads? In my opinion the Ti suspension+RSB was about the same as the stock ST. After riding in a Ti with sportlines and RSB that was better than stock ST.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:07 PM   #3
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If you aren't looking for lower/stiffer springs, you would do well to upgrade your shocks/struts, but I wouldn't recommend the Ti handling package. I think the main difference of the Ti Handling package is the RSB and wheel/tire combo.

Personally, if you're looking for increased handling response without sacrificing too much in ride comfort, your money would be better spent on upgrading your suspension bushings.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cobie56 View Post
Hey all. I looked for a thread about this subject but did not locate one. If one exists I apologise in advance..

I have already installed a steeda rear sway bar and replaced the OEM Contis with Conti DWS ultra hi perf tires on my SEL with 17" wheels and have seen a noticable and positive difference in the car's handling with no decrease in ride quality.

In your opinion, would the install of the Titanium With Handling Pkg shocks and struts further better handling with little or no decrease in ride comfort? Or....are there aftermarket struts and shocks that fit the focus that would be a better choice?

Or.... Am I deceiving myself in thinking that replacing shocks and struts will help with these goals? I live in the northeast where winters are hard on roads and so do not want to lower the car or replace springs as ride quality is important on broken/bumpy roads. Another concern is this: I do not experience the clunking some of you do with the front suspension and am concerned that replacing the struts will cause the suspension to start clunking. Your opinion?

Thanks in advance for the feedback. Always great to read what is posted here.
Search for the Ford Racing Focus Handling Kit... I think there is a thread with some reviews
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:34 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by darkangelism View Post
Test drive a Ti, or find somebody with one and drive or ride in theirs, I don't think the Ti is harsh, and the main differences are in the 18s for ride quality. What is your reasoning for better handling, autoX, just better day to day performance, do you do a lot of driving on twisty roads? In my opinion the Ti suspension+RSB was about the same as the stock ST. After riding in a Ti with sportlines and RSB that was better than stock ST.

No, I agree, I don't think the,Ti's ride is harsh. I've driven in a friend's Ti w/ handling pkg and it seems better damped and corners better than my SEL. Less "floaty" front end, too, over rough pavement.
I do drive a lot on twisties and am just looking for better handling overall, but not autoX, or anywhere near, levels. Just better day to day performance.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:35 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by mac.mogul View Post
If you aren't looking for lower/stiffer springs, you would do well to upgrade your shocks/struts, but I wouldn't recommend the Ti handling package. I think the main difference of the Ti Handling package is the RSB and wheel/tire combo.

Personally, if you're looking for increased handling response without sacrificing too much in ride comfort, your money would be better spent on upgrading your suspension bushings.
I agree with you in that I was not thinking of going the whole Ti pkg route, only shocks and struts.

Do you know what all is involved with changing out / upgrading bushings? Front and rear?
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:42 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by ccelaya View Post
Search for the Ford Racing Focus Handling Kit... I think there is a thread with some reviews
Thnx for that but the focus handling kit includes new springs which lower the car about an inch and I don't want that so at 800 or so bucks, not using the springs would just be a waste of money. That is why I was thinking of going the shock strut route as a compromise.
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Old 07-16-2013, 04:46 PM   #8
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Check this thread, for info too, he went with ST struts and Ti shocks
http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=309775
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Old 08-02-2013, 10:49 PM   #9
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well,, bit the proverbial bullet and went ahead and ordered all the parts to mod my car... Ti w/ hand pkg rear shocks, ST struts w/ all the assorted pieces to go w/ that... 450 bucks.. parts should be in next week and i'll get them installed asap and report back here how (hopefully) much better the handling is...
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Old 08-15-2013, 08:54 PM   #10
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Updating my experiences and experimentation to improve my focus' handling:
I did several things.....
1st I replaced the OEM tires with same size conti DWS, 215/50/17, and noticed a big difference for the better over the OEM tires with no decline in ride comfort
2nd I installed a steeda rear sway bar....BIG difference for the better, flatter cornering, more responsive turn in.
3rd and most costly, today I installed ST struts up front and Ti with hand'lg package rear shocks. Ride is slightly firmer but not unduly so. The new set up eliminates the floaty, loose, jiggly feel I used to have over uneven or bumpy roads. It now feels more planted and, again, turn in, steering feel, etc, def feel better ....more responsive.
WilL drive it more (only been two days and driven around town only) and report back with any further observations
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