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Old 05-23-2004, 05:26   #1 (permalink)
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I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

Yes hard as it is to believe in my "Zetec is the best Focus in the World" attitude I actually gave an ST170 a damned good hiding today at work. I have never driven one in 4 months of being there, just a lazy test drive about 12 months ago when they first came out after I had bought my Zetec and fallen in love already.

This thing has been sitting on the dealership lot for months, the tyres were plain greasy after being blacked most days for 2 months straight and wearing off and being re-blacked (tyre black) to make them look good.. took a Sri Lankan bloke who's an Airline Captain on a test drive, thinking of importing the car into Sri Lanka from buying it here. He told me to drive him, he didn't need to drive so I did just that. Launched it hard, blew out some cobwebs and got it purring nicely after a few corners, but the first corner launched into in 2nd gear and feeling the arse end slip right out from under me because of the greasy tyres then whacking on full oppy lock and powering out... well I guess powering isn't a term I could apply to the ST170... I'm so used to 2nd being my corner exit gear, the response below 4000rpm in 2nd is virtually non existant compared to what I'm used to. So i adjusted my driving style and changed into 1st for the tight roundabouts and corner exits and MAN was it fun!!!!! That thing goes like the clappers, but agreed it just doesn't feel fast enough, although it runs rings around anything I've ever driven handling wise. Lincoln's assessment of the handling is spot on, it just feels stunning and is so amazingly easy to control well beyond it's limit, sensational stuff. The Zetec can get a bit of a handful simply because it hasn't got the power to overcome it's grip (or lack thereof when out of control) and thus when you go bananas in the car, there isn't enough power to return things to normal as quickly as the ST. Basicall the ST is a scream to be a dickhead in but also handles like a dream.

It would take some getting used to, living with an ST that is. My Zetec feels like it charges harder in a straight line and probably does coz it's run in, but the ST definitely outhandles it. I hate the seats (too hard and built for fat bastards not skinny blokes like me) and the turning circle is positively disgusting but to be expected, I though the Zetec was shabby... I guess it just pales in comparson the the XR6 I've driven the last 48 hours!!

In brief, I'd only own an ST170 on 2 conditions.
1) Put on a new exhaust and intaketo give it some low down guts
2) put on 20kg oin the arse and hips to fit into the seat better

Until then I'm over the moon with my Zetec and it does everything I need. As long as it's keeping up with Linc's ST I'm happy too!!!

Cheers,
Matt
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Old 05-24-2004, 07:11   #2 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

Glad to hear it Matt, although I doubt an intake and exhaust would improve bottom end. I'd like to see any dyno graphs which show a bottom end improvement, it'd be more like a top end improvement.
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Old 05-26-2004, 08:33   #3 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

It entirely depends on the exhaust setup. Most of thepopular exhaust systems in the US, such as Borla and JBA offer a torque increase over the entire rev range, the Borla shows your typical better increase at the top end, while the JBA exhaust actually has no improvement at the peak power, only down low! Others like Focus Sport's Long Tube headers only have an increase up high.

It all depends on the length of the headers extraction tubes as to where you want the power. Everyone knows that headers work by creating a vacuum on the other pipes as the gas is passing where the pipes meet, but this is most effective at a particular RPM determined by the length of the headers. Some are tuned for down low, some are tuned for higher up the rev range.

So it would all depend on which exhaust setup you went for, I have some dyno graphs but would need to scan them in, which requires finding the scanner which is packed away in the many boxes from moving house!

Hope that helps. Tim
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Old 05-26-2004, 17:17   #4 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

the exhaust i was thinking of getting which is as popular in the us as the borla is the magna flow if you look on their site you can get sound clips and dyno charts and it shows an increase in torque across the rev range and also seems to increase top end power enough so that it doesn't drop off as much after 5500rpm. although a cats back on its own wont produce much low end torque, when combined with a high flow cat, shorty headers and and good flex pipe apparently there are good gians to be made.
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Old 05-27-2004, 01:18   #5 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

hmmm now all i have to do is wait for them to register our ST170 as a demo (happening very soon) and it will become my daily driver with a little luck!!!!! SWEEEEEET!!!!
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Old 05-27-2004, 04:05   #6 (permalink)
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frown Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zetec
2) put on 20kg oin the arse and hips to fit into the seat better
Cheers,
Matt
The seats fit me good and im not fat 85kg(gym yuppy)and only 180cm so im not a big bastard.(2 1/2yrs ago was 104kg!!!!)
You dont want to gain a fatass, should join a gym and make your shoulders a bit wider!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zetec
the response below 4000rpm in 2nd is virtually non existant compared to what I'm used to
When was the last time you drove a older car, I drive a 2ltr escort P/Van and there is no comparision... it has no response below 4000rpm or above it!
But it can still tow a heavy duty 6x4 trailer full level of damp sand with no worries... unless it blows the rear block welsh plug, ****in old cars... got home and found water leakin out the bell housing!
Plus I got to put in a new G/box while im there as i blew 3rd whilist out mud sliding, it was all yeeha until that little whoopsie with no clutch.
So im ridin the treadly cycle speed machine to work for a while now... doh.
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Old 05-27-2004, 05:02   #7 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

Seats are fine for me to, i am 188cm and i am a fat arse who is going to the gym to tone up :)

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Old 05-27-2004, 05:58   #8 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

Well I'm a skinny 186cm rake with no arse or shoulders and I just find the Zetec seats being all cloth are a little softer and narrower in their design, fit me more comfortably but I guess that's coz I've done 30,000km in them!!! In the end had I the choice all over again (and the extra cash) and had the ST170 been out when I bought my Zetec I'd probably buy the ST with 90% certainty... I guess I'm just too used to my car and I wouldn't buy an ST having owned a lowered and well run in ST because it handles bloody well anyway and is virtually as quick. Still, the ST170 puts that extra smile on your face and I'm sure after 30,000km in an ST the Zetec seats would feel to spongy and narrow...

At least it's a Focus and I'm not asserting my individuality by buying the same car as everyone else on the market... a wonderful reliable and exciting Holden Corolla SP23 mmmmm fun stuff. No thanks I'll stick to my Focus thanks and run rings around your other cars he he
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Old 05-27-2004, 17:18   #9 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

The seats are fine, if they stopped breaking on me. I've had to get it fixed twice now, it keeps breaking it's backing behind the lumbar area...first corner you throw the car into and push back into the seat a bit and... *pop!* there goes the backing.
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Old 05-27-2004, 17:50   #10 (permalink)
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Re: I finally did it - I DROVE AN ST170!!!!!

havent had mine break yet, just squeaks like crazy, going back next wednesday for that and some exhaust sounding leaks etc

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