Monday, January 3, 2011

2012 Ford Focus equipped with brake-based torque vectoring

newfordfocus 08 630op 450x295 2012 Ford Focus equipped with brake based torque vectoring
The 2012 Ford Focus is set to hit dealers early next year, and in addition to a cadre of standard and optional features, Ford is equipping every new Focus with its new breed of “torque vectoring control.”
For the uninitiated, torque vectoring systems actively split power between the two driven wheels to maximize traction and increase performance. Some higher-end systems manipulate the output to each wheel through a set of electronically controlled gears, while others apply a subtle amount of braking to the inside wheel, causing more power to be sent to the outside wheel, thus helping rotate the vehicle through a turn. Ford is using the latter on the 2012 Focus, the first implementation of its kind on a Blue Oval model in North America.
Thanks to the continued implementation of standard traction control systems, these torque vectoring setups are becoming more common and have finally reached the compact segment. While the benefits generally outweigh the negatives, we’ve found other brake-based systems have a tendency to overheat the pads, rotors and fluid when flogged long and hard enough (ahem, GTI). We’ll be able to test it out for ourselves soon, so look for a full driving report in just over a month. In the meantime, get the full details in the press release after the jump.