Early versions of the 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine powering the Ford Focus RS likes to consume coolant.
The American automaker has confirmed to that some 2016 and 2017 Focus RS models produce “white exhaust smoke” as they burn coolant during cold running. The company wouldn’t confirm a recall, but a spokesman did say Ford is “working on a repair for all customers.” If owners are experiencing the issue and seeing white exhaust smoke, they are advised to visit their dealership for an inspection and repair under warranty.
Ford has already replaced several affected engines with brand new units built to the latest specifications.
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There has been no confirmation on what causes the issue, although owners and internet users suspect the problem has to do with block distortion. It is believed that the physical shape of the engine actually changes through multiple heat cycles, eventually preventing the gasket from sealing properly and coolant leaking into the cylinders when the engine is cold.
And although the Ford Mustang uses the same engine, the issue doesn’t seem to affect that sports car because it uses different material for its block and head. The Focus RS uses an upgraded alloy with a cast-iron lining, which means it has its own head gasket design.