Matthew Jones07 March 2012

Geneva 2012: Ford Fiesta ST

This is Ford’s production-ready turbo'd little firebrand…

Having elbowed our way through acrylic fibers and feathered hair, we've finally got a glimpse at the production-ready 136mph Ford Fiesta ST, which punches into UK showrooms early next year.

It's very pouty. It's only got three doors. And, like all good fast Fords, it's a bit indecent - despite being fitted with a smaller, turbocharged 1.6-litre EcoBoost engine (the last one had a 2.0-litre) the new ST's 20 per cent up on power.

Output's grown to 178bhp and 177 torques. This means it'll get from 0-62mph in less than seven seconds. Hawksbill turtle enthusiast? Don't panic - the new Fiesta ST also puts out 20 per cent less CO2 emissions compared with the previous model.

Ford also claims that it rides and handles a lot better than its older brother - the RS department's developed a specially tuned chassis that sits 15mm lower than the standard Fiesta. It's also nailed on Ford's Torque Vectoring Control system that increases stability through corners. James'll be cock-a-hoop to learn that said chassis (and the three electronic stability control modes that try and keep it the right way up) were developed over 5,000 kilometers at his favourite holiday destination - Germany's Nürburgring Nordschleife.

Inside, there's Ford's ‘MyKey' tech, which lets you limit the performance depending on who's behind the wheel, SYNC, Ford's voice-activated in-car connectivity system, and Recaro sports seats as standard.

Prices for this greener, faster, newer little tyke start at around £18,000. This or a Volkswagen Polo GTI, TopGear.commers?

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