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New Ford Focus ST or used Mercedes E63 AMG?

Prices are out for the Focus ST. And it's not cheap...

Ford has finally released prices for the new Focus ST, and the news is… interesting. Mainly because it’s quite expensive.

You can get a diesel Focus ST. And we’re sure it’ll be just fine. Prices for that start at £29,495, or £30,595 for the estate. But the one you really want is the petrol, which gets a 2.3-litre four-cylinder turbocharged motor giving 276bhp and 310lb ft. In the hatch, 0-62mph takes 5.7 seconds, and the top speed is 155mph.

There’s a new electronic limited-slip differential on the driven front axle that Ford claims is quicker-reacting and more accurate than the mechanical set-ups used by the Focus’s more hardcore rivals, plus lowered suspension (with ‘Continuously Controlled Damping’), quicker steering and an optional ‘Performance Pack’ that brings rev-matching to the six-speed manual gearbox, launch control and so-on.

The price? £31,995. For context, the Honda Civic Type R starts at £31,550, the Hyundai i30N at £25,995, the Renault Megane R.S at £27,835 and lastly the VW Golf GTI Performance at £32,985.

None of those are available as an estate, though, and the Focus very much is for the princely sum of £33,095. Or around £3k more than a five-year old Mercedes E63 AMG Estate with less than 50,000 miles on its odometer. Oh my.

Yep, for the same money as a new Focus ST you could have a fine, German V8 clothed in deeply practical sheet metal. We found this one for sale at £28,995 at a dealer in Oxfordshire.

Looks clean, no? And amusing. This E63 pre-dates two things. First is ‘Mercedes-AMG’ - this is a Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG, not a Mercedes-AMG E63. Second is the engine - nowadays all V8 AMGs have the 4.0-litre, but this E63 is from the 5.5-litre era. Power stands at 557bhp, giving 0-60mph in 4.3 seconds. The top speed is pegged at 155mph, but a few keystrokes can easily lift that beyond 180mph.

Won’t be quite as frugal as the Ford, and of course if something goes wrong the repair bills could be ruinous to say the least. But it has a V8, it’s massive, rear-wheel drive and quite hilarious. Where would your money go?

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