After several appearances in concept trim on the motor show circuit across the world, it’s time for Ford to present the final production version of the Fiesta ST on the eve of its 2012 Geneva Motor Show debut.
The hottest model of the Blue Oval’s supermini series gets a 1.6-litre turbocharged EcoBoost gasoline engine rated at 180PS (178bhp) and 240Nm (177 lb-ft). It is matched to a six-speed manual gearbox that drives the front wheels.
Ford says that the new ST will run the 0-62mph (100km/h) sprint in under seven seconds, and reach a top speed of more than 136mph (219km/h) while delivering a 20 per cent reduction in CO2 emissions compared with the previous 148hp model.
“We believe Ford customers will be blown away by the new Fiesta ST, and not only by the exhilarating performance but by the styling and specification, too. This dynamic new hot-hatch is undoubtedly our best Fiesta ST to date,” said Jost Capito, Ford’s director of Global Performance Vehicles.
In addition to the Ecoboost engine, the ST also benefits from a specially tuned chassis that sits 15mm lower than the standard Fiesta and features Ford’s enhanced Torque Vectoring Control system and three Electronic Stability Control modes.
On the outside, aside from the new alloy wheels shod in beefier rubber, the ST also gains a bespoke aero package with a new honeycomb grille and bumper designs plus side skirts, a roof spoiler and a rear diffuser.
Inside, the flagship Fiesta model gets a set of Recaro sport seats in leather, a new steering wheel and unique trims.
Sales of the new Fiesta ST are expected to begin in Europe in late 2012 or early 2013, while Ford officially acknowledged that it is contemplating a North American introduction.
“Ford remains open to introducing the high-performance small car to North America for the first time, following a positive response to the five-door Fiesta ST concept at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show,” the company said in a statement.