With its tiny turbocharged three-cylinder engine, the new Ford Fiesta ST may be a firecracker of a pocket rocket. But it’s hardly what you might call a “supercar.” This version is, though.
Stemming from close collaboration between Ford Performance and Olsbergs MSE, the new Fiesta ST Supercar made its debut in the FIA World Rallycross Championship this past weekend in Barcelona. And it’s the first time that the new hot hatch has been put into competition.
Fiesta ST x 4
The car’s ostensibly based on Ford’s new road-going hot hatch, but has obviously undergone some major upgrades for rallycross duty. Chief among them is the new engine. The rulebook calls for 2.0-liter turbo fours, so Olsbergs ditched the 1.5-liter three-pot from the road version and developed its own in-house. Instead of 200 horsepower, the rallyspec model packs 600. Driving all four wheels, it’ll rocket to 60 in under two seconds. (The road-going version takes three and a half times that.)
It also has a new suspension setup and aero kit to help it keep up with the rest of the pack. But Olsbergs says it developed the new Fiesta ST supercar to be budget-friendly. “Having largely sat out the 2017 campaign, for us, it was very important that if we were to return to World RX full-time, it had to be in the right circumstances and with a very real chance of achieving success on a sensible budget,” said team principal Andreas Eriksson. “Every time we enter a series, it is with the expectation of being competitive and fighting for victory, and we are confident that in the 2018 Fiesta ST, we have the car to do just that.”
The new car didn’t perform spectacularly upon its race (or rally) debut. Robin Larson tied for ninth place (with Timur Timerzyanov in the GRX Hyundai i20). And Kevin Eriksson placed fourtheenth (near the bottom) in the second car. Johan Kristoffersson and Petter Solberg took the top two spots in the new VW Polo R, followed by Andreas Bakkerud and Mattias Ekström in the Audi S1. But this is just the start of the season, and there’s still another eleven rounds to go.