On December 17, 2007 Ford of Europe confirmed that a Mk 2 Focus RS would be launched in 2009. The press release also notes that a concept version of the RS is due in mid-2008. Contrary to numerous rumours and speculation the RS was announced by Ford to have a conventional FWD layout with an upgraded Duratec ST engine with 305PS Duratec RS, gearbox, suspension, and LSD. As announced, the Focus RS MK2 hit the road on 5 January 2009.
When Ford completed the production run of the Mk I, Ford of Britain's managing director Paul Thomas said "We always knew Focus RS would be a sales winner, but we could never have predicted its fantastic reception and the effect it had in re-igniting passion for the Ford RS brand."
In 2008, Ford revealed the new Focus RS in "concept" form at the British International Motor Show. The Duratec RS engine was upgraded to produce 305 PS (224 kW; 301 hp) at 6500 rpm and 440 N⋅m (325 lb⋅ft) of torque at 2250-4500 rpm. 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) acceleration was quoted to be under 6 seconds. The RS uses a modified Volvo-engineered 2,522 cc (2.5 L; 153.9 cu in) inline-five engine found in the Focus ST. A larger BorgWarner K16 turbo now delivers up to 20.3 psi (1.40 bar) of boost. A new air-to-air intercooler has been developed as a complement, while the forged crankshaft, silicon-aluminum pistons, graphite-coated cylinder bores, a compression ratio of 8.5:1 and variable valve timing also up the power output. The car remains front wheel drive, but to reduce torque steer uses a Quaife Automatic Torque Biasing LSD, and a specially designed MacPherson strut suspension at the front called RevoKnuckle, which provides a lower scrub radius and kingpin offset than traditional designs while avoiding the increased weight and complexity of double wishbone and multi-link suspension setups. Ford UK claim: "It's as close as you'll come to driving a full-spec rally car