2005 Ford Fiesta ST 2.0 16v from UK and Ireland
Great all-rounder, perfect balance of performance and comfort.
After owning numerous hot hatches, the bar was set high for the ST when I took delivery earlier this year. To be honest, I'm probably over-picky with my cars; always looking for a level of all-round performance / finish that doesn't really exist within the price range.
I owned a Clio 172, which I cursed for it's tinny build quality, despite it's storming engine and undeniably fun set-up. A Civic Type-R followed, which I found to be the opposite. A very well engineered product, but a strangely detached driving experience. My last car was an MG ZR 160, which I picked up very cheap when Rover went bust. What a mistake! Believe me, it wasn't cheap enough! Rattles, rattles, rattles! And a drive a so harsh any journey more than a few miles would become very tiresome.
I've always liked the fast Ford branding, having owned many RS's in the past. And with the recent ST line-up looking so smart (new Focus anyone?), I thought I'd have a look.
I liked the idea that the Fiesta, on paper, is not too "hot". More about a compromise of performance and comfort than out-and-out go karting. With a 0-60 sprint of 7.9 seconds, it's quick enough, but'll never keep up the likes of a Clio 182 in a straight line. But that's not the point.
Ownership of the ST has proven to be a pleasure. It's a firm, yet smooth ride with exceptional build quality. The handling is awesome, very grippy indeed. And it's nice to know that Ford haven't achieved this by using a suspension set-up so hard that you jar your spine every time you run over a pebble.
The power delivery is smooth and predicable, 3rd gear being especially able. There's no real "kick", like when the VVT roars up in a Civic Type-R, but I think that adds to the composed nature of the car. It's a hot hatch for grown-ups.
I see the FST as an almost Golf GTi-like experience. But a new Golf would cost you 20 grand. I love the ST's spec (the in-dash 6-disc changer is particularly nice), understated* (but beautiful) looks and all-round capability. I'm growing the love the ST badge and think I may stick with it for a few years. That Focus does look lovely!
*Unless you opt for the Viper stripes!
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 9th October, 2005
22nd Aug 2006, 07:55
I couldnt agree more, I've had a Clio 172 before I ordered my Fiesta ST and yes they are fantastic cars, very fast and extremely fun, but they are getting old now and after 3 years they start developing problems and falling to bits.
I ordered my Fiesta Last week with almost every Option available except heated seats and electric mirrors, so can't wait to get it.
They may not be as fast as clio sports, but a hell of a lot cheaper to insure and run, aswell as being better built and more reliable, I have to say I loved the fiesta as soon as I got in one and they look just right too! not to boy racer or overly modded.
As for the focus ST, I drive my dads on a regular basis and have to say its pure orgasmic, the best experience I've had to be honest, the sound is almost like a super car! handling is a dream and if I could afford one I would get one without a doubt.
The only bad thing about the focus ST is the MPG which is pretty shocking even when you do avoid thrashing it!
12th Nov 2006, 08:09
Dreary engine, should've used the engine from the st170.
17th Jun 2007, 14:49
I totally agree, if they could fit a 2.0 16v engine in a fiesta, why not use focus ST170 engine and have the same performance as a clio 172??!!! Ford, you need some answers.
21st Feb 2008, 09:05
Well you see, it isn't always that simple. You can't just take an engine and pop it straight into any car. The engine in the ST150 is from a Mondeo and has a bispoke exhaust system to help it reach 150bhp. This is supposed to give the car better balance (as the engine can be mounted properly, further back).