Higher Focus: Our Rallycross Project Finally Gets a Proper Suspension

Update by Tom Suddard to the Ford SVT Focus project car
Jun 8, 2016

SVT Focus: Now with shocks and ride height!
Every SVT Focus came with Konis, but ours had 256,000 miles and needed to be replaced.
BC Racing makes affordable, adjustable coilovers.
Parts from Massive Speed System helped us reign in the rear alignment.
They also beefed up the rear end–look how much bigger this camber link is.
We guesstimated a good ride height, and figured we'd fine tune after an event.
Changing shocks and springs isn't rocket science–we completed the job in an afternoon.
SVT Focus: Now with shocks and ride height!

With a few rallycrosses (and a season championship) under our belt, it was finally time to throw some real suspension pieces under our Focus.

We had a few goals:
1. Don’t break the bank.
2. Raise the car.
3. Handle better.
4. Increase strength.

All signs pointed to a set of coilovers, which we figured would hit every goal at once. Unfortunately, there aren’t many companies that make inexpensive coilovers for a Focus like ours, and we certainly couldn’t afford the custom-made stuff Ken Block buys.

Then, we stumbled across BC Racing. Their BR series coilovers seemed to tick every box, and a full kit for our Focus was just $1050. We looked at the specs, and figured we’d be able to get a decent amount of lift out of their kit, even though it’s really meant for lowered street cars. Were the spring rates appropriate? Honestly, we weren’t sure. We did know that the coilovers used common 2.5” springs, though, which meant replacements in almost any length and rate would be easy to find.

We didn’t want to ruin our alignment when we lifted the car, so we also ordered some goodies from Massive Speed System. Their billet suspension pieces let us adjust toe and camber in the rear suspension, while adding strength and saving weight. While we had the shopping cart open, we also added a set of adjustable front sway bar endlinks. Why? The stock pieces are flimsy, and we were constantly worried about breaking one. Total bill from Massive? Just over $460.

After an afternoon of wrenching, our Focus was at least a few inches taller than before. It’s a good thing, too–because our next rallycross included a jump….

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View comments on the GRM forums
jstein77 UltraDork
6/10/16 11:40 a.m.

You seem to have a lot more negative camber on the back than on the front. Are you sure that's what you want?

captdownshift GRM+ Memberand UberDork
6/10/16 4:08 p.m.

In reply to jstein77:

Too much negative in the front negates the ability to turn in. I'm curious to see how they hold up, a nice monotube based coilover should do well.

jstein77 UltraDork
6/11/16 5:21 p.m.
captdownshift wrote: In reply to jstein77: Too much negative in the front negates the ability to turn in. I'm curious to see how they hold up, a nice monotube based coilover should do well.

That may be true on dirt (I've never found it so on pavement), but why would you need so much negative camber on the rear, non-driven wheels?

captdownshift GRM+ Memberand UberDork
6/11/16 5:46 p.m.

In reply to jstein77:

On the rear it helps with stability under braking

Shaun HalfDork
8/10/16 11:12 a.m.

I am curious to see how the BC Racing stuff holds up. When their products comes up in other forums as a less spendy performance option the webopinion is "nope- you get what you pay for". If it can last a season doing rallycross duty under the Fiesta that would be a useful data point.

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