If you want a small hot hatch, a fast supermini, the outstanding offer on the market has been steadily growing in the last decade. It seems like the Renault Clio RS – and its predecessors tracing back to the Williams edition of the early and mid-nineties model – has always been there. But nowadays there’s also the option to pick a Polo GTI (who’s forefather is really the Golf GTI of old) and its brothers the Fabia RS and Ibiza FR, Abarth Punto Evo, MiTo QV, Vauxhall Corsa VXR (or Opel Corsa OPC if you’re on the European side of the pond), Audi A1 Quattro, DS3 Racing and Mini John Cooper Works. I might have missed one or two. And in addition there’s a bunch of “warm hatches” that include the Suzuki Swift Sport and, not long ago, the 207 GTI that will be followed up next year by a successor that’s once again properly hot, the 208 GTI. But wait, where’s Ford?!
Been wondering that for so long now. Before the introduction of the current model, the Mark VI, Ford used to sell an ST version of the Mark V. Did about 150 bhp standard and some obscure upgrade sold through dealers could bring that up to over 180 bhp. All they are currently offering is a luke-warm 120 bhp gasoline edition. There have been reports about it having been overtaken by snails with ADHD.
Then came the Geneva Car Show of 2012 and Ford pulled a much-expected rabbit out of its top hat: a new Fiesta ST, finally! Some 180 bhp, lowered suspension and a nifty piece of engineering called Torque Vectoring Control (TVC) to keep the individual wheels from slipping while accelerating out of a corner. The big fiesta isn’t starting straight away though, as those interested in this bottom-feeding piece of shout-y aggression will have to wait until 2013 to be able to place their orders. But man is this good news! For Ford too, to be honest, as they were looking a bit like a kid being pushed around.
Their retaliation definitely isn’t mild. They run right over most of the competition when it comes to making a statement about the car’s potential with its looks. Large, razor-bladed alloy wheels, a big mouth that would be feeding on Mercs and Bimmers of lesser potential had the car been a bit bigger and lipstick red – the type that screams for male attention – upholstery.
There’s no reason to doubt this will be a regularly spotted hooligan on the roads from 2013.