There are a lot of excellent driving roads across Europe, and if your goal is to make a top 10 and take some of your quickest cars there for a spin, then you might want to stand down because Ford has already completed the task and came up with a winning patch of tarmac.
With journalist Steve Sutcliffe behind the wheel, the all-new Focus ST blasted across the mountains in Northern Portugal, cutting into the Parque Natural do Alvao region in order to arrive at its destination.
The road is called N304 and it scored a total of 57/60 across multiple categories such as Thrill Factor, Hospitality, Scenery and Food and Drinks.
“In three days of filming, we barely saw twenty other cars on it,” said Sutcliffe. “There are other roads that head north and south, so I guess the mad and somewhat twisty N304 is not everybody’s cup of tea… but for keen drivers it’s an unforgettable route.”
This particular region of Portugal also featured good quality and inexpensive hotels, great little cafes, several waterfalls and the river Olo – all nearby.
With Portugal’s N304 coming out on top as Europe’s Greatest Driving Road, places 2 through 10 are as follows: Mountain Road (Isle of Man), Via Campocatino (Italy), Atlantic Ocean Road (Norway), MA10 (Mallorca, Spain), B500, (Black Forest, Germany), D526, 926 (Alps, France), C462 (Catalonia, Spain), North York Moors (England) and the Transfagarasan Highway (Romania).
As for the new Ford Focus ST, it is powered by a turbocharged 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine, producing 276 HP (280 PS) and 310 lb-ft (420 Nm) of torque. In a straight line, it can accelerate to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.7 seconds, before maxing out at 250 km/h (155 mph).