Von Jonathan Crouch
Do you want to know how much fun you can have in a blazingly fast little supermini? Then try one of these: the post-2013 version of Ford's Fiesta ST. It's designed and drives like a true performance car, ready to put a smile on your face corner after corner. Of course, you can buy more power for not much more than the affordable prices being charged here. But once you've ridden in one of these, you probably won't want it anymore.
Before 2013, we never had a really sporty Ford Fiesta. The Blue Oval brand naturally sought to build a compact car heritage around this model, dating back to the 1981 XR2, the history of which was later embellished by the more powerful RS1800 and RS Turbo models. All, however, have been overshadowed by French hatchback rivals, first a range of small Peugeot GTis and then in recent years the Renaultsport Clio. The post-2013-generation Fiesta ST we're looking at here decided to change all that. Once again, he had to face increasingly sophisticated versions of these two competitors, along with a variety of other commercial rockets of similar power, ranging from 170 to 200 hp. In short, it had to be good. It was. Which was in a way predictable. For one, it was based on the most manageable supermini of its kind, which certainly helped. Then again, Ford has had plenty of time to get it right. The sixth generation Fiesta on which this particular ST is based dates from 2008, but Spring 2013 saw the release of the first of the suitably fast versions. Unlike its rivals, the Blue Oval has not one, but two performance badges up its sleeve when it comes to cars of this ilk, with "ST" (or "Sports Technologies") being company jargon for "fast but not fast." shocked', a level of performance just above the fast but well-known 'Zetec-S' models, but just below the track-spec RS derivatives. In other words, a badge that promises light madras rather than vindoloo and applies to the kind of car a hot-blooded racer might like but still drives every day. Designed by enthusiasts, to be driven by enthusiasts, this fast Fiesta proved ready. , cheap to sell and fast enough with 182 hp on tap. It was the best car of its kind that Ford brought to us. An ST200 version was released in Fall 2016. The ST and ST200 variants were sold until mid-2017, after which they gave way to an ST version of the seventh generation Fiesta replacement.
What are you getting
It's easy to go overboard with a car of this nature and go full throttle, a temptation Ford has happily resisted here. This isn't the prettiest junior shopper rocket you can buy, but it packs a cheerfully determined demeanor, the shopper's edge dominated by a black honeycomb mesh version of the facelifted sixth-generation Fiesta's distinctive Aston Martin-esque trapezoidal front grille. It sits beneath a sculptural hood and just above a chin-length spoiler, both of which set the tone for a sporty three-door silhouette in an exclusive ST body kit. Particularly useful design at the rear with upper roof spoiler and lower diffuser through which a pair of twin chromed tailpipes peeks out. Things aren't that obvious when you're sitting inside. Opt for a trimmed base version and you don't even get the two things that make the cabin stand out the most: the start button on the steering column (rather hidden) and the nice, grippy Recaro seats you get in the more luxurious ST2 model. Other ST-specific features are a bit more subtle: there are aluminum trims for the shifter and pedals, and ST badging on the steering wheel and front door sills. Oh, and traction control, which on smaller Fiestas would be tucked away in one of the infotainment system's submenus, takes pride of place in the center console. Instruments, all regular Fiesta fare, ie everything works well but doesn't feel premium. If you have a problem with that, consider the affordable price. Overall, we're happy with everything, even if the dominant multimedia screen could be a bit larger. However, there are no complaints about the brilliant Sony-branded stereo that you get on the higher-end models. Also, for a change, it's nice to have a well-rounded (rather than flat) steering wheel in this car class, and the leather-wrapped three-spoke steering wheel feels nice. What about rear seat space? Well, it's better than this three-door's claustrophobic rising waistline might lead you to expect. Admittedly, the heavily padded Recaros make getting into the rear a bit difficult, but once you get there, the Fiesta surprises with manageable headroom of up to two meters, even though the legs are squeezed against the front seat. Luggage space, meanwhile, is much more competitive than the larger Focus model, although the 276-litre total is a fraction less than competing Peugeot 208 GTi and Renaultsport Clio models. If that's not enough, you can of course push the back seat forward, and since the backrest simply falls into the backrest, you don't get a completely level floor, but you do get 960 liters of fresh air.
where to look
Make sure the car you are inspecting is straight and all panels are aligned with no gaps; and that the panels are equidistant from each other along the length of the panel joint. Check the fit of exterior trim such as headlights, bumpers and wing mirrors etc. Make sure they have not been damaged and/or incorrectly replaced. Check the paintwork for dull spots, which means it may have been touched up at some point and the repair is not of good quality. It's common for the Fiesta ST to have stone chips on the front bumper and hood and this can be a negotiating point. Look for wheel damage from the brakes, which not only looks horrible but can also be a sign that the suspension is damaged. or that the steering geometry is misaligned. Be wary of cars with alloy wheels painted black; This was not a standard Ford color and is sometimes requested by owners to hide brake damage. Factory standard tires were Bridgestone Potenza RE050A. These should last a while, but it all depends on the owner's riding style. If you're looking at a car with 5,000 miles and the front tires are a different brand, maybe you were having fun. This means that not only have they worn out the rims, but possibly other components as well. worn out by driving, it is also worth checking the chassis and steering components for wear. In theory, if the car was lowered to the correct height, the tires would wear out faster if the steering alignment wasn't correct. This would wear down the inside edge of the tires, so put the steering up and check that. Red calipers mean you're looking at a car with the Style Pack installed. A car without the styling pack will come with silver or brown/dirty calipers if it is an older car as they will deteriorate over time. Red ink can take a lot of heat, but very high temperatures can discolor red ink. This means the brakes were very hot and were applied in a way that generated heat. Possibly on track days or when enjoying lots of back roads. Check if the brakes work. Drive forward slowly and gently lift the parking brake to see how far the parking brake lever moves and you should feel the rear of the car sag. If only one side sags, the brakes on the opposite side can lock up. That would fail the TÜV and can sometimes be expensive. You should also be able to feel any imbalance in the brakes, or "rollers" as it's commonly known. It is the result of sudden or prolonged braking, heat generation and holding the brake pedal while stopped. Hs is commonly started by driving from highway speeds to a stop. Or have a great time on country roads. With warp comes hot brakes, which feel very insensitive and can squeak when braking at low speeds. Having the parking brake lever set too high can mean the rear pads are falling off, so it's worth checking. However, the parking brake lever can be adjusted to lower. If the engine bay was steam cleaned, ask why. It's not common to do this when selling a car unless you're trying to hide something. Check under the engine for drips or leaks. If you're at the private seller's home, ask where you usually park your car and look for signs of leaks in the floor. Check all fluid levels before starting the car and it is best to see the car when the engine is cold. This way you can hear the sound of the engine when you start it every morning. You don't want a noisy engine. If the engine is hot when you see it, it could be hiding a cold start or rattle/noise problem. Feel the hood to see if it's hot or check the temperature gauge on the instrument panel. Check the engine compartment for signs of accident damage. Check that all front parts are secure and not loose; Grille, bumper, front fascia, headlights etc. Check the mounting screws/bolts for signs of tampering ie they have been removed at some point. Make sure the air conditioning is working. Inspect the seats for movement, tilt, rise, and general wear. Also that seat belts are removed and rolled up by themselves. Check not only that everything is working in the car, but also the radio and satellite navigation functions. Check the DAB function on the radio as this has been a problem in the past as it didn't work on some devices. Look under the car to make sure there is nothing dangling or debris. Move the exhaust to ensure it is secure and the brackets are in place. If the exhaust is moving excessively, it could indicate worn mounts, possibly related to worn engine mounts or an excessive driving style, meaning everything is moving too much. The same can be said if you wiggle the exhaust and you hear it tapping or banging against the underside of the car. Check the underbody for markings on where you would put a jack and ask the dealer why the car was exposed, possibly for modifications or repairs. It's also worth getting an HPI report to see if there are any records of the damaged or retired vehicle. For a small fee it's worth it as the seller may be hiding something about the car and it's just not worth the risk of not checking it out. If the car was canceled or repaired due to an accident, this will be reflected on the first page of the V5 logbook at the bottom of the page. This means that the vehicle is registered as such and is always on record with the car. This reduces the value of the car and you are better off looking for an undamaged car as there are so many. And in general? Well, if there are problems, think about working to fix them. If that's unaffordable, walk away. There are many more examples of this model there.
(approximately based on a 2014 Fiesta ST - excluding VAT) An air filter costs around £12-15 and an oil filter around £6. Brake pads range from £15-25 a set, although we've found more expensive branded items cost around £40 £.Brake discs can be as affordable as £25 to £38, although we have found more expensive branded items for around £65 or even in the £84 range damaging the rear light assembly; A replacement unit costs between £50 and £70 and a headlamp is even more expensive, costing £83 to £90 (although we've seen these listed for up to £180). A timing belt costs around £56, although we've found more expensive branded options around £130. A spark plug can be had for around £10, but more expensive brands can command around £23,100.
It's not often that engineers get things right with a little hot hatch. Each of the compromises are made for everyday usability and rob you of ultimate answer if you're really pushing for it. Or get a race-bred Rocket that loves a slick track but is so tight it makes you nervous in everyday motorsport. With this ST, the balance between these two extremes is better than ever. Why, well, let's get into the details. Already after the first 30 seconds of driving you realize that there is something special about this car. It's got a bit of a stiff spring, yes, but it's bearable and there's a terrier feel in the way he just wants to walk by pulling on a leash controlled by his right foot. Smaller, more expensive compacts dilute that enthusiast enthusiasm with modern technology: paddle-shift transmissions, four-wheel drive, electronic damping systems. There is none of that here, which does not mean that high-tech intelligence is completely missing. On the other hand, things have changed a bit on this generation model compared to the previous 2.0-litre Fiesta ST launched in 2005. First off, the engine here is one of Ford's next-generation EcoBoost units, capable of delivering more power from low capacities developing more efficient emissions. Here, the 2.0-liter unit of the previous generation with 150 hp is replaced by a 1.6-liter engine with 182 hp. Which is impressive but still falls short of the 200bhp offered by this model's two closest competitors, the Peugeot 208GTi and Renaultsport Clio 200. Or at least on paper. In practice it makes no difference as this Fiesta has an overboost feature that allows it to deliver 200hp in 15 second bursts of acceleration just when you want it. That's why its 0-100 km/h acceleration time of 6.9 seconds is practically identical to that of the two competitors mentioned above. The top speed of 137 mph isn't too shy either. So the lack of power to properly compete at the top of the junior hatchback sector isn't really the issue you might think. But on the contrary. Mountune, the developers of the Ford GT supercar, developed a factory-approved engine package that, for just a few hundred pounds more than new, increased power to 215hp and torque from 290 to 320Nm, enough to almost shave you Second, the all-important burst of acceleration from 4th gear from 50 to 100 km/h – with this package it improved to just 5.7 seconds, which is fast enough to seriously annoy the much more powerful hatchbacks on the market. Beware of vehicles equipped with this option. Towards the end of this ST model's lifespan, Ford also introduced a 200 hp ST200 variant, a variant that also featured changes to the steering, shock absorbers and anti-roll bars, and some reprogramming of the ESP system. Whichever ST variant you choose, it's clear that power is nothing without control, and that's where this Fiesta really shines. The suspension has stiffer springs and has been lowered by 15mm: enough to maximally squeeze the already brilliant chassis and deliver a level of cornering balance that makes rival Peugeot, for example, look a little muddy and compromised. This little Ford has been dubbed an "anti-supercar racer," which essentially means you'll probably have more fun with it in real-life, everyday driving on real-world public roads than any truly exotic thing. . The reasons for this really speak to the depth of development that has gone into this ST. Take the sleek 6-speed manual, for example. Or full disc brakes (a first on a Fiesta). And all of these elements have been honed to perfection over hundreds and hundreds of screaming kilometers of Germany's fearsome Nürburgring Nordschleife race track. You have the right address there. While you don't get a variable-ratio setup like the larger Focus ST, brilliant feel reserves and a faster-ratio frame make this one of the best electric setups we've tested. And here, special effort has been directed to the clever eTVC torque vectoring system, which gently brakes the inside wheel, transferring power to the outside wheel where grip is needed, and allowing incredible mid-corner speed that you throws over the edge. to bend. You don't feel it: you just point, plant and go. And feel like a better driver than you probably are. I've found that the best sports cars flatter you in this way. The torque vectoring continues even when you want to get a little hooligan and turn off all or part of the electronic stability program, causing the rear end to wobble when standing up and braking. A nifty MyKey feature lets you disable this option when you rent your car. We know it is. You can even limit the stereo volume, which you should be doing anyway as the engine sounds great. That's thanks to a clever 'Sound Symposer' system that filters out the most enticing noises from under the bonnet and sends them into the cabin under hard acceleration when you want to hear them - an exhilarating soundtrack for an exhilarating drive.
After three decades of trying, Ford has finally taken the lead in the junior hatchback segment with this post-2013 Fiesta ST. It was a bestseller in itself. This is truly a special little car, suitable for everyday use but as focused as you could wish for when your favorite road opens up and you can bend your right foot, sink into the grippy Recaros and make a responsible statement. Amount of Red Veil. We'd also honestly say it's pretty much the only car in its segment worthwhile enough to consider a trackday. Which in our opinion says it all, so to speak, the difference between a supermini with aprons, spoilers and a more powerful engine and a properly designed performance car. Market segments like a Porsche 911 would be if you're looking for a performance sports car, or a Lotus Elise might be for those looking for a roadster. In all honesty, you'd have more fun driving this little Ford on a public road than anything more expensive and powerful. Think of it as something superior to the common man, perhaps small in price and performance, but big on smiles per mile. Which, after all, is exactly what a hatch should be.