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You are here: Home | News, Events & Advice | Focus Mk3 ST Diesel Tuned to 240BHP!

Focus Mk3 ST Diesel Tuned to 240BHP!

Its not often that Ford produce a performance diesel to rival the best that VW can do and have been doing for over 20 years, but now at long last Ford have released a performance version of the Focus ST in a 2.0 TDi format that should be able to get close to the VAG Diesel engines.
Boasting a strong 184PS as standard its really the first in a line (we hope) of performance diesels coming out of the Ford stable.

The Pumaspeed development team have for quite some time had this new Focus Mk3 ST diesel on their radar but with the new RS on the horizon we thought it best to hold back on buying one for development and concentrate on the RS.

We know many passionate ST owners but none as passionate Alex Paull, who had just purchased his new Focus ST diesel and really needed some extra power from it. He had already tried another device that promised 39 bhp but after running that for a few days decided to hit the MAXD OUT Dyno to see what the increase actually was. Needless to say the other device was packed back off to the suppliers and heavy discussions made with the development team at MAXD and Pumaspeed.

Leap of Faith.
To develop any new tuning package takes time. Luckily, Alex had the use of his old company car for 2 weeks extra. He was happy to loan the car and Pumaspeed never to back out of a challenge, duly collected the development Focus ST-D and set about the voyage of discovery.

Problem 1.
  Before we even started we were up-against the fact that Focus ST-D has a totally new version of ECU that only Ford and one locked down company had OBD rear write access to. Step up MAXD-OUT tuning, Andy at MAXD has over 20 years tuning experience and if anyone can crack the Delphi ECU he can. It took a full week to gain full OBD rear / Write access to the ECU and involved many hours and calls to and from countries far and wide but he was in.

So the development started one week behind schedule but it was full steam ahead with boxes full of air filters, intercooler cores etc and the car strapped to the MAXD OUT Dyno.

Mappings were written and re-written time and time again, the power and torque curve was adjusted and smoothed, new filters tried and intercoolers strapped to the car and tested. Many runs were taken to give fair and honest results. The car was taken on long power runs to heat the stock intercooler and on short ones to see the difference.

Different combinations of air filter were tried and at the stage 1 level. The only suitable filter that worked and didn't cause ECU limp was the Stock Replacement K&N unit shown below, we believe that with different Stage 2 mappings a higher flowing unit could be used and a little extra gained.


The MAXD OUT tuning box was tested again and again with the new communication protocol and it worked without fault each and everytime so that you can use it at home via the Pumaspeed Mail order Service

Test results at Stage 1
For Stage 1 MAXD OUT mappings we advise the use of the following
K & N replacement air filter and
optional R-Sport Stage 3 Intercooler

The Graph below shows the gains from remapping alone, the KN filter was fitted throughout the testing,
stock power with K&N Air Filter is 190
MAXD Stage 1 Power with KN Filter only ( no intercooler fitted for this test )  is 219.3 bhp
Torque increases are the most significant data point with a massive 72nm increase
Power up from stock  (no K&N air filter fitted )  185bhp  to 220bhp    +35 bhp
torque up from stock  (no K&N air filter fitted )   380 nm to 466 nm    +86 nm
The intercooler core we selected was the 13.5 litre R-Sport Stage 3 taken directly from the Focus ST250.

Focus ST Mk3 Diesel Intercooler Focus ST Mk3 Diesel Intercooler Focus Mk3 ST Diesel Intercooler R-Sport

We decided to relocate the unit forward into full view of the front bumper to give it the maximum airflow available.
Exactly like the R-Sport non facelift ST250 R-Sport Stage 3 intercooler. and Identical the new Focus RS Mk3.
The two main benefits of this unit is the fact that none of the unit is hidden behind the cross member, so It receives the full frontal flow through its huge 760mm x 90mm x 200mm core and the second is the fact that the LOGO is fully visible through the front bumper.
( Its good to know that Ford believe this is the correct way to Mount a Focus Mk3 intercooler as well as R-Sport )

We didn't have enough time to look at the exhaust system but believe huge power gains are to be had with cat and DPF deletes plus additional mapping. Maybe the next step for this car or another is the complete removal of the turbocharger / Catalyst / DPF and exhaust.

An X-27 Hybrid turbo has been rumored and DPF delete / turbo back system but we will have to see how demand grows for this vehicle before we can move to the next stage 2 and 3 levels.


Stage 1+

After the success of the stage 1, Pumaspeed have taken the Focus Diesel to the next level. We set about removing further restrictions from the car, this time it meant a DPF delete and larger bore exhaust system. With the potential hazards of removing a dpf, we had the MAXD guys at the ready to work their magic on the Delphi ECU. Not only to increase the power, but to ensure that removing the dpf doesnt cause the engine to throw up errors or loose power. As usual, the guys at MAXD pulled it off, addressing any running issues first before running the car on the Dyno again and again with different file revisions. With the help of the Prototype R-Sport DPF delete exhaust MAXD managed to extract a collosal 240bhp and 480nm of torque. That isn't even the best bit. Analyze the power curve and you will see it is transfomed from the usual low down burst you are used to from a diesel, into a power delivery not unlike the petrol counterpart. Plenty of power to steal the lime light from the VAG Tdi boys!

More visual enhancements have found their way onto our demo car too. The all new Pumaspeed Turismo wheels suit the car perfectly along with H&R springs they give the car an aggressive sporting stance. The Maxton front splitter adds to the motorsport matching the lines of the front bumper perfectly.