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Mods and Update: Focus RS vs Golf R vs WRX STI vs Evo X




Earlier this month, I introduced the cars that we'll be testing in a comparison. The cars included a Focus RS, a Mk7 Golf R, a 4th gen WRX STI and an Evo X. Unfortunately, the Evo X will not be making it, but the other three are still in, so I thought I'd take some time to post the update and shed more light on the cars. I wanted to have a 100% stock car comparison. I really did. Unfortunately, that isn't going to happen. Well, for most of the cars anyway.

The Golf R and the STI are modified, whereas the RS is stock. If you're curious, the Evo X was also modified. All have very few modifications. The Golf R went the way that seems to be very popular - tune and exhaust. It also has an intake. I asked the owner to return the tune to stock, which he agreed to do, and said he might take the intake out too. Exhaust, though, is a lot tougher to get out. He has a full turbo back exhaust so he didn't want to take it out. I can't blame him. As a result, the car will be running with it. How much performance is it worth? I don't know. I'll do some research. I suspect it will be 10-15 whp, considering the aftermarket downpipe. I don't know how much time that will be worth on the track but will try to estimate somehow.

The STI, on the other hand, has no modifications under the hood. The engine is stock, exhaust is stock, intake is stock, and it is running the stock tune. The owner only made two modifications - camber bolts and tires. Tires are Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R. They are the hot tire right now. The one to have. They have a tread wear rating of 200, making them legal tires for plenty of competition classes, yet they seem to out grip and out class every other tire in its category. Think more of a Michelin Sport Cup tire competitor than Pilot Super Sport. Everyone I have talked to who has tried these tires said they are comparable to DOT legal track tires with a tread wear rating sub 100. Hard to say how much exactly they're worth, but I hear 2 seconds on our track is more or less how much you can cut out of a lap with them. As far as camber, it's much tougher to gauge. The owner is running -2.5 deg all around. I seem to be running about 1 second faster per lap at the same pace as before getting camber plates and I am at about -2.3 deg on the front, rears are obviously zero, being a solid axle. Is it fair to say the STI would be about 3 seconds slower, stock? Don't know if it's fair, but I don't think it's far fetched.

The RS, though, as mentioned is stock.. I know, I know, it's not fair but the alternative is to not run at all. Which would you rather? I'd rather get a time, at least as a baseline for the future if another one comes our way to test and gauge modifications. Plus, if you're an RS fan, imagine it winning, stock, vs modified cars! That would be a home run. And if it loses, you can always blame on the modifications. Win-win.

Tomorrow, I will be getting some (non-official) lap times and logs in the RS and getting to know it on the track. Then, the first weekend of October, we'll have all three cars at the track, and an Evo X if we can find another, to get official lap times and see how they stack up. Stay tuned!


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