Sam Philip23 April 2009

’Cross fire

Mental 550bhp rallycross Ford Fiesta has us longing for the new ST…

See more Fiesta Rallycross pics

For those of you disappointed that Ford is staying resolutely silent on the possibility of a new Fiesta ST (or indeed RS), here's something to tide you over: the ‘Div 1' Ford Fiesta Rally Cross.

We like it. We like those massive arches. We like the big rear wing. We like the white wheels. We particularly like the fact that it produces a deeply mental 550bhp from a two-litre turbocharged four-pot running on E85 ethanol. 550bhp! In a car the size of a large shoe! That's... well, mental. There's no other word for it. Mental.

Rallycross, if you haven't heard of it, is a race series that started off as a telly show in the 1960s. It pits several cars together in heats on tracks that vary from gravel to dirt to tarmac. The cars are generally smaller and less regulated than WRC cars - hence a 500bhp Fiesta - and are massively, massively fast: Ford reckons the Fiesta will hit 60mph in around 2.8 seconds, about par for the competition.

In its first outing at Lydden Hill, the Fiesta managed to take a heat win in the hands of Andreas Eriksson and ex-WRC champ Marcus Gronholm (the Nordic drivers, if you hadn't guessed, tend to dominate rallycross), though the Ford RS team reported a handful of transmission failures. Nothing that can't be ironed out, we're sure.

Now then, Ford, how about one of these for the road? We don't even need the full 550bhp. We'll settle for, say, 450bhp and a decent iPod connection?

And just imagine the thrashing that JC could have dealt out to the evil Corvette if he'd had one of these Fiestas...

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