The Ford Fiesta has been a target for buyers looking for a frugal and inexpensive economy car. But it has always been lacking in the horsepower department, with performance best described as “adequate” instead of “entertaining.”
All that changes with the car you see here, the 2014 Fiesta ST. If you’re one of those performance car enthusiasts who always laments that the U.S. doesn’t get the same high-zoot models that the European market enjoys, your prayers have finally been answered. Developed primarily by Ford’s Team RS performance vehicle group in Europe with a little help from the American Ford Special Vehicle Team, the Fiesta ST is the hot hatch of the moment, following the arrival of the larger and more powerful Focus ST in the U.S. last year.
The upgrades are significant, starting with the powertrain: a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engine making 197 horsepower and 202 pounds-feet of torque, mated to a six-speed manual transmission and directed through the front wheels via a special Torque Vectoring Control system. It’s a fantastic little motor, and it pulls the Fiesta ST to 60 mph in just 6.9 seconds, plenty quick for any car but enormous fun in a subcompact five-door hatch.