Less means more

The Weekend Post - Motoring - - CRUISE CONTROL -

MY favourite hot hatch, Ford’s Fi­esta ST, now comes with less for more.

The third gen­er­a­tion will de­but at the Geneva mo­tor show next month with a pow­er­ful and fru­gal 1.5-litre tur­bocharged three-cylin­der petrol en­gine.

The new all-alu­minium pow­er­plant pro­duces 149kW of power and 290Nm of torque, of­fer­ing 15kW and 50Nm of ex­tra po­tency over the 1.6-litre turbo four in the out­go­ing sec­ond-gen ST.

Thanks to the heart trans­plant, a sprint from 0100km/h will now take 6.7 sec­onds – a re­duc­tion of twotenths – which matches that of its di­rect hot hatch com­peti­tors the Volk­swa­gen Polo GTI, Re­nault Clio RS Sport and Mini Cooper S.

With a com­bined cy­cle fuel con­sump­tion fig­ure of 4.8L/100km and just 114 grams of CO2 emis­sions per kilome­tre, the Fi­esta ST has seg­ment-lead­ing ef­fi­ciency thanks to its unique three-pot driv­e­train.

The Blue Oval’s ap­pli­ca­tion of cylin­der de­ac­ti­va­tion tech­nol­ogy in a pro­duc­tion three-cylin­der is a world-first, with the unit be­com­ing a twopot­ter un­der light load con­di­tions.

Trans­mis­sion op­tions are yet to be con­firmed by Ford, but video and im­ages re­leased by the brand de­pict a man­ual gear­box, which sug­gests the sporty Fi­esta will con­tinue to be a man­ual-only propo­si­tion – just like its pre­de­ces­sor and the Fo­cus ST and RS.

Ad­di­tion­ally, a drive mode se­lec­tor has fil­tered down from the Fo­cus RS, giv­ing the driver a choice of nor­mal, sport and track set­tings for the driv­e­train, steer­ing and elec­tronic sta­bil­ity con­trol cal­i­bra­tion.

Each of these set­tings also vary the elec­tron­i­cally en­hanced en­gine sound and con­trol a valve in the ex­haust sys­tem.

Torque vec­tor­ing has also been added, help­ing to re­duce un­der­steer and im­prove trac­tion.

For the first time the range­top­ping Fi­esta will be of­fered as a five-door.

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