First-class Fiesta ST dips into ‘Limited Edition’ status

Although the latest Fiesta ST was only introduced around a year ago, Iain Robertson believes that launching a special version of the compact hatchback can have beneficial effects on the rest of the Fiesta range in a very competitive sector.

Ford’s Performance Edition (FPE) of the irrepressible Fiesta ST is limited to only 600 examples, all of which are in three-door body style and finished in a Deep Orange paint that was last used for the Focus ST launch editions. Based on the best-selling ST-3 trim, the Fiesta ST FPE gains from a number of specially-designed and developed Ford Performance parts that include 18.0-inch diameter alloy wheels that shave seven kilograms of weight from the standard wheel set and a race-car style coil-over suspension pack, which features stainless steel damper housings and blue powder-coated Ford Performance springs.

In many respects, these additions are not dissimilar to the various RS packages that Ford created for its earliest versions of the Escort model. The Fiesta ST is the car that Ford believes ‘keeps on giving’. Being fast, fun, relatively affordable, practical and quite economical, the FPE version will help owners to stand out from the crowd. However, this ST is for customers who consider themselves to be either performance-oriented drivers, or tuning enthusiasts who demand maximum fun on the road combined with a sporty appearance. Unfortunately, as with many of the company’s ‘special variants’, it is likely to be snaffled-up by the RS Club brigade, leaving no examples available for anyone else!

For what it is worth, the coil-over suspension pack lowers the ride height by 15mm at the front and 10mm at the rear and has been tested extensively at the Nürburgring Nordschleife Circuit by Ford’s performance arm engineers. It is a suspension package that can be adjusted manually, with 12 bump and 16 rebound settings for a personalised, finely-tuned driving setup. Unless owners possess an intrinsic knowledge of adjustable suspension, this could lead to around 600 breathed-on Fiestas with the worst ride/handling characteristics possible.

The 10-spoke, 18-inch flow-formed alloy wheels are lighter, stronger and more durable than a traditional cast wheel. Flow-forming involves the application of pressure to the inner barrel of the wheel, while spinning and after it has been cast, which stretches and compresses the aluminium, increasing tensile strength. The alloys are finished with a winter-resistant, high-grade triple-layer ‘Magnetite’ paintwork.

Other standard equipment includes LED headlamps and a B&O premium audio system, as well as a specially-designed Quaife limited slip differential (LSD), launch control and performance shift-light indicators. More than 5,000 Fiesta STs have been sold since May 2018 and it has won several key awards. Final pricing for the Fiesta ST FPE will be announced next month, but this ultimate specification ST will carry a premium of at least £3,000 over the standard ST-3 list price, which could whisk its price tag to almost £26,000, which is a lot for a sub-compact hatchback model. It goes on sale from June 2019, with deliveries expected from early September.

MSG Summary

Naturally, we shall endeavour to obtain the best discounts for our customers on this enticing small Ford but, typical of ‘special’ and ‘limited edition’ versions, they will be small.

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