Ford Focus Forum banner

1 - 20 of 38 Posts

·
Small Car Czar
Joined
·
15,328 Posts
Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

I know the car has been mentioned here before but there is a new article in this week's Autoweek on the SVTF with the Cobra running gear:

ATI 500HP "Terminator" Focus

From Nose to Tail
ATI's Focus strikes like a Cobra: Fast and Hard
By ANDREW LUU

DESPITE A SHARED LOVE affair with “more power,” there has always been some animosity between muscle car enthusiasts and the sport compact tuner crowd. Even though many pocket rockets thrashed V8s on the road and at the track, their tuners would inevitably hear the argument: “There’s no replacement for displacement.” So here’s a replacement with displacement.

Accurate Technologies Inc., based in Wixom, Michigan, took delivery of a Focus SVT and started asking the “more power” question. A stock SVT is an entertaining package with a high-compression 2.0-liter inline four with 170 hp and 145 lb-ft of torque.

That’s great for the class but sedate even when compared to the base V8-powered, 260-hp and 302-lb-ft Mustang GT. ATI sales manager Richard George said exceeding those figures would stretch the four-banger’s limit. The company built one Focus with a supercharger, but ATI also wanted something that would be more special.

Accurate Technologies does a lot of Ford work, so the natural thing to do was swap in Ford’s most powerful engine: the SVT Mustang Cobra’s 390-hp, 390-lb-ft, supercharged 4.6-liter V8.

Problem solved—and then some. The result is called the Terminator Focus.

With custom stainless-steel headers, a larger single-blade throttle body and a smaller pulley on the supercharger (to increase boost pressure), George says this V8 now boasts upward of 500 hp and 500 lb-ft. Coupled with a curb weight of about 3200 pounds, it doesn’t take an engineer to put two and two together and figure out what that does for Focus performance.

This strategic move also silences another frequent criticism of pocket rockets: that true sports cars are rear-wheel drive. Yes, this baby lights it up out back. And if you’re consoling your big block by thinking this is just another “project” car, think again because ATI offers this Frankenstein transformation to the public, along with a two-year/24,000-mile warranty.

The 4.6 fits snugly in the engine bay without any compromise to the firewall (and the stock hood still slams shut), so the only significant modifications necessary were to spread the suspension strut tower mounts outward a little and then widen the front of the exhaust tunnel to 18 inches to house the tail of the Cobra’s T-56 transmission. The driveshaft installs cleanly through the existing exhaust tunnel, which is so spacious that George believes Ford already had plans brewing to power the rear axle in an all-wheel-drive model.

ATI also beefed up the suspension with a racing-style tubular K-member, adjustable struts and springs, and a Cobra antiroll bar and steering rack up front. In back, the Terminator gets adjustable shocks and the Cobra independent rear suspension, all in an effort to maintain the Cobra’s handling geometry. Taking no chances with the increased power, the subframe has been reinforced and deceleration chores are delegated to Cobra brakes and calipers with Performance Friction brake pads, enhanced with driver-adjustable brake bias.

Turn the key and the familiar Mustang burble brings the Terminator to life. As soon as we graced open roads, we drove cautiously, short-shifting the six-speed into second and third. Once in third we felt confident that it would be safe to just plant the throttle on the floor—wrong.

Instantly the Terminator leapt forward with the front hopping from the thrust, the rear tires spinning for 25 feet and the rear wagging all the way as we wrestled with the steering wheel.

That shouldn’t have come as a surprise, thinking about the Viper-like power. Perhaps our perception lapsed, because aside from the 18-inch rims, the appearance is all stock SVT Focus, complete with a/c, stereo and factory gauges. The only hint of the massive power is the super-wide rear 295/30R-18 Michelin Pilots. It’s a classic wolf in sheep’s clothing, with little to give away the power that lurks beneath.

George estimates that, as equipped, this baby will tackle the quarter-mile in high 11s. There’s so much power that, when we lined it up for a photo, he cautioned, “If you want to do a burnout, use second gear. It’s much easier.”

So we did and it was like child’s play. The power caused the rear to pivot violently and we had to aggressively countersteer to keep it from snapping around. When we got sick of inhaling burnt rubber, we drove around trying to envision this beast as a daily driver.

Apart from a clutch stiffer even than that on the SVT Cobra and the firm ride that you’d expect from a tuner car, you could make runs to the grocery store. Even though the battery is relocated to the trunk, ATI preserved all the Focus utility by fabricating another trunk floor—although it does have a tad less space. The rear seats still fold down and the performance suspension all bolts into the existing tire wells. Just keep shifts around 3000 rpm and things are fairly civilized.

Most of the Focus’ neutral handling is intact, but take a tight right-hander with a decent dose of throttle—like we did—and the rear will step out in no time. Despite the extra front weight, steering is extremely quick and it is easily controlled. The ample torque also allows for further throttle manipulation. Just don’t open it too much or the laws of physics will take precedence.

Owning this rear-wheel-drive sleeper of a Focus would certainly be a blast—from drifting through corners to sending stoplight shivers down the spines of both muscle and sport compact car drivers. But, as in other areas of life, there is a big price to be paid for extreme individuality. The fully souped Terminator Focus tested here costs $69,500, plus the donor Focus.

A huge burn in the pocket, but you could do worse searching to squeeze the same output from the stock engine. If you already own a SVT Focus (or find a used one), you could probably sell off the SVT engine, transmission, suspension, rims and tires to some ZX3 driver and recoup some of that cost.

However, consider this in the words of a popular TV commercial: Custom 18-inch HRE rims, $4,500; Eibach springs and performance suspension, $5,200; SVT Mustang powertrain swap, $35,000; pulling into a weekend import tuner car meet, dropping the clutch, mashing the throttle and seeing all those puzzled faces—priceless.

Autoweek Magazine
From Nose to Tail - May 15, 2003
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,005 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Man, if I only made like a million dollars a year...

Sweet story though. Pretty cool about the AWD speculation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,051 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

It seems like they were being nice about the cars driveability. Sounds like the car would be a handful for all but the most skilled drivers.

Very cool none the less! I am surprised they don't have any firm performance numbers though. It seems like that is the key selling point on the conversion.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

0-60 times would be interesting, at least, the explanation of how to get the best times. 'Feather the throttle, roll in gently...'
They killed their own argument that "there is a replacement for displacement" when they installed the displacement though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,197 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

haha I am saving this quote!

"Custom 18-inch HRE rims, $4,500; Eibach springs and performance suspension, $5,200; SVT Mustang powertrain swap, $35,000; pulling into a weekend import tuner car meet, dropping the clutch, mashing the throttle and seeing all those puzzled faces—priceless."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,272 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

awesome, that car would tear apart anything on that street, and that wheel spin picture is ****ing BADDASSSSSSSS
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,774 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

The first autoX of the Detroit season ATI brought this car to run the cones. They were driving it around earlier in the morning and lemme tell ya, this car is SCARY fast. One flick of the throttle and the rear end pushed this car forward with one of the most wicked roars and a nice little whistle. :evilgrin:

ATI has some tweaking to do with the suspension because it wasn't doing so good cornering on the track but when there was a straight away, look out. :eek:

Definatly one of the coolest things I've seen :thumbup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
795 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

I got to the 500+ hp/tq part, and said to myself "I have to get one of these!"

Then I got to the $69,500 PRICETAG...good God that's ridiculous.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,859 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Might be, but holy**** would it be fun to destroy someone calling it a slocus.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
561 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Hopefully I will win some money in Vegas next month when I go. If I do I am getting this done to my car. I would love to see what it does in the 1/4 mile.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,562 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

gatekeeper said:
I got to the 500+ hp/tq part, and said to myself "I have to get one of these!"

Then I got to the $69,500 PRICETAG...good God that's ridiculous.
Plus the price of a donor focus...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,199 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Can you say: Bye, Bye Viper & Corvette. I knew you could. :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,341 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

have u ppl ever been to www.ford-v8-focus.com ? about 40g's cheaper there and you could drop in a 351 instead of that puny 4.6
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,222 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

How could that thing hook up :confused: :lol: Scary thing that thing looks stock on the outside ;) Nobody would ever know what your packing under the hood until yah smoke thier ass :D That car kicks ass but for that money i would by a Cobra and mod it to muder this thing, but cool none the less :thumbup: :thumbup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,859 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Well its pretty obvious this isnt exactly a consumer car, but odds are the person who has this done to their Focus has quite enough money to do just about anything he wants to it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
688 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Yeah, but still this thing is a monster :thumbup: .
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
84 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

orndog said:
They killed their own argument that "there is a replacement for displacement" when they installed the displacement though.
That wasnt their argument, if you would read it it states......Here is a Replacement WITH Displacment
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
114 Posts
Re: Autoweek\'s story on ATI\'s Terminator (Cobra) Focus

Just imagine rolling up to a stoplight all quite like, so as not to raise suspicion. Get the other guys attention in the supped-up whatever and then ripping him a new one when the light turned green.
HAHAHAHA... That would be so awesome. :lol: :lol:
 
1 - 20 of 38 Posts
Top