Hot hatchbacks are rebels amongst, what is today, a rather civilised automotive industry. Amongst the premium saloons and the very serious performance kit sits this breed that point blank refuses to be extinguished. The past few years have seen a real resurgence for those cars that demand to have their cake and eat it. Practicality and performance can both be had in a neat affordable package. Ford’s Fiesta ST is our pick of the bunch, it won our 2013 Car of the Year, but its time in the spotlight is coming to an end. An all-new Fiesta is coming, but this model has one final swan song for enthusiasts. Meet the Ford Fiesta ST200.
At a secretive location, filled with legendary Ford cars of the past, we were amongst the first to get up close and personal with the new Ford Fiesta ST200. Fast Fiestas such as the XR2 pepper this models heritage and so this car has some big shoes to fill. However, the ST on which it is based is an excellent starting point.
Visually the Ford Fiesta ST200 has a passive aggressive tone thanks in part to a new set of 17 inch alloy wheels. These five spoke black rims fill the arches and wouldn’t look out of place on the Death Star. “Storm Grey” is an exclusive colour for the ST200 and it wears it with distain. Badging is proudly tattooed on the cars backside.
Inside you will find the interior familiar with the exception of silver stitched Recaro seats, more ST logos, and a an illuminated scuff plate. Seating five with an ample level of boot space, the beauty of the ST has always been that when you just need to go to the shops it is still a Fiesta.
Don’t go thinking that this car earned its special status with a new paint job and a snazzy set of wheels… Oh no! The chassis has had a good going over with a stiffer suspension setup, with attention being given to the rear twist beam and front steering knuckles, and an overall lower centre of gravity. The 1.6 litre turbocharged engine now produces 197 BHP and 214lb ft of torque. But there is more! A 15 second overboost feature enables 212 BHP and 236lb ft. 0-62 MPH takes 6.7 seconds and it will go onto a top speed of 143 MPH. Final drive ratio has also been shortened for the 6 speed manual transmission.
The Ford Fiesta ST200 will be produced in limited numbers with production starting in June. Just 1,600 will be made with 400 coming to the UK. None are heading to America.
Will this Ford Fiesta ST200 become an icon? It appears to be a promising start, but the proof will indeed be in the pudding.