by Mircea Panait, 12 Mar 2018
One cylinder and 0.1 liters less displacement than the previous generation, the all-new FiST prepares to take on the European hot hatchback scene with the most powerful version of the automaker’s 1.5-liter EcoBoost. And an array of performance-oriented features, including force vectoring springs and optional Launch Control.
Also optional is the mechanical Quaife limited-slip differential, which helps the front end of the front-wheel-drive hot hatchback carve corners like it’s on rails. More grip is achieved by limiting distribution of the engine’s torque to the wheel with reduced grip. The Torque Vectoring Control system, on the other hand, reduces understeer and improves road-holding by braking the inside front wheel during cornering.
“We’ve tuned the all-new Fiesta ST’s mechanical LSD option to work seamlessly with enhanced Torque Vectoring Control to deliver the best possible natural traction without burning away excess torque with brake interventions,” explains Leo Roeks, the director of Ford Performance in Europe, about the 200-horsepower ST.
Metric horsepower that is, for the FiST won’t be available in the United States of America. In addition to the output mentioned beforehand, the 1.5-liter EcoBoost three-cylinder turbo develops 290 Nm (214 pound-feet) of peak torque from 1,600 to 4,000 rpm, which equates to 6.5 seconds for the zero to 100 km/h (62 mph) run.
Top speed is quoted at 232 km/h (144 miles per hour), which happens to be less than the Renault Clio RS and MINI John Cooper Works. Maximum velocity, however, isn’t the main attribute of a hot hatchback. Handling is, to which the all-new Fiesta ST brags with a twin-beam rear suspension setup and Tenneco dampers with frequency-dependent damping that’s made possible by RC1 valve technology.
Last, but certainly not least, the steering knuckle design and EPAS calibration work hand in hand for the 12:1 steering ratio, “the fastest of any Ford Performance model and 14 per cent faster than the previous-generation Fiesta ST200.” Scheduled to go on sale in the Old Continent this spring, pricing for the FiST will be released in the coming weeks for both the three- and five-door models.