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Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Ford Focus - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Ford Focus Sports Technologies (Ford Focus ST) first appeared in 2005 when Ford released a new vehicle for their Sport lineup. It was reported to have reached 0-60 mph in an outstanding 6.4 seconds, with a top speed of 152 mph. 

What is the Ford Focus ST Designed For?

Ford Focus 2 - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Before determining whether drilled or slotted rotors are best for your Ford Focus ST, we have to understand what the vehicle was designed for. In other words, what did Ford want it to do?

Well, judging by the ‘Sport’ designation, as well as the 2005 version’s top speed, we can assume that it was designed for street racing. Its shape, however, is unorthodox for street racing–the Focus comes with a hatchback. People generally prefer hatchbacks for their space and reliability. 

For this article, we’ll assume that your Ford Focus ST will be used for street racing and high-speed performance. 

What Are Drilled Rotors?

drilled rotor - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Drilled rotors have holes on them. The first benefit of drilled rotors is their ability to dissipate heat. Heat builds up when you press down on your brakes and the drilled holes provide an outlet for that heat to dissipate. If too much heat builds up, it might cause your brakes to perform poorly over time, or wear down faster. Therefore, heat dissipation is critical for your braking performance. 

The second benefit has to do with water. Just as drilled holes allow heat to escape, they also allow water to evaporate. Water and other fluids get into your brake systems when you run over puddles, or when you drive during the rainy season. The holes in drilled rotors allow your braking to perform better in wet conditions, as they allow the water to evaporate faster and more efficiently. What this ultimately means is that your brakes have a better grip in wet conditions, which is a serious concern for many drivers. We’ve all been caught in wet conditions that make us say, “Whoa!” 

What Are Slotted Rotors?

slotted rotor - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Slotted brake rotors, on the other hand, have slotted grooves on them. These grooves act like a blade that shaves away the unwanted debris from the contact points of your pads and rotors. On a typical blank rotor, brake dust and particles get between the contact points of your pads and rotors, decreasing their overall performance. These slots, like the drilled holes, also have aesthetic and functional purposes. 

The first benefit of slotted rotors is their ability to shave away debris like brake dust and other particles from your brake pads and rotors. This allows your brakes to engage at optimum performance. This is the main reason why slotted rotors are preferred by those that spend a lot of time on the track. If performance is what you’re looking for, then you should go for slotted rotors.

Ford Focus ST Rotor Replacement

Ford Focus 3 - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

Another powerful option is to combine both drilled and slotted technologies in one: these are called Drilled and Slotted rotors. 

What you get out of drilled and slotted rotors are the best of both rotors. Amazing heat dissipation, powerful pad bite during wet and adverse conditions, and improved braking performance…are a few of the benefits that come with drilled and slotted rotors.  

All of this, of course, is based on how you use your car. Here is our recommendation:

If you mostly use your Ford Focus as a daily driver, we recommend drilled rotors. If you’ll only be using it for high-performance drives, we recommend slotted rotors. If, however, you plan to use it both on the road and on the track, then go with drilled and slotted rotors. 

If you’re driving a Ford Focus ST, and you still can’t decide what’s best, you’ll never go wrong with drilled and slotted rotors. That’s the most bang for your buck.

brake kit - Drilled vs Slotted Rotors: Ford Focus ST

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