The Fiesta ST is an awesome little car, the new one anyway, wouldnt have bothered with the previous one as it had no turbo. They are quite effecient too, in an extreme case someone managed 75 MPG in one over a 300 mile trip, but like I say thats extreme!
Until the Focus ST came along in 2012, there was no better enthusiast's Ford Focus in the US than the SVT. End of story.
My first one was really low-mile and beautiful, but we lost it in less than a year when it was totalled by a negligent driver. Bought the current one with 75,000 miles on it already, but it's had very little non-routine maintenance required at over 155,000 miles now.
It's very much an enthusiast's car, with the 6-speed manual, the burly clutch, and the peaky Zetec engine; it takes lots of gear-rowing to keep in in the powerband. So someone who is more of a "commuter" than a "driver" would probably either tire of it quickly, burn up the clutch, or just lug the engine like crazy. It isn't happy at all below 3500 RPMs, and is really hard to start out from a stop without some generous throttle. So you have to WANT it.
With 170 horsepower, the high-RPM pull is impressive for a car of its size and weight; clicking off 7300-RPM upshifts is a hoot. The handling balance is pretty much unparalleled in a front-drive car. They really broke the mold with these, and are finally just now getting back into that territory with the new Fiesta ST. Very curious to get some seat time in one of those to see how things have progressed; I think it would make a good successor for my SVT when the time comes...
Good stuff. You seem a bit more enthusiastic about yours than I was about mine
Weird, you'd think the US would get the more powerful version and Europe get the less powerful. Wonder why they never sold it there.
No clue. The Volvo C30 was sold here, with essentially the same turbo 5-cylinder power plant used in the Focus RS (albeit with a much softer and less athletic chassis).
The problem is that after the first generation, Ford of North America and Ford of Europe took RADICALLY DIFFERENT PATHS on the Focus. And NA got the short end of the stick BY FAR.
2005-2011 were some dark, dark times for the North American Focus. And at the same time, Europe was getting some of the best ever. This was all presumably "remedied" in 2012 with the latest re-design of the Focus, wherein NA and EU are cooperating on all of the design, engineering, and tooling again.
I do like the odd Ford, never been a huge fan but I generally like all cars, especialy if they are innovative or clever. I think the Ecoboost 1.0 litre with 140 bhp is an amazing engine, ive always liked small cars with small engines, if they're quick too then its a bonus!