Fast Car

Mk7 Zetec-S

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Comparing the Mk7 Fiesta to the Mk1 throws into sharp focus just how far the automotive world advanced over the course of those decades. While the original sold its charms on the minimalist virtues of a compact footprint and cheap-to-produce plastics, the new-for-2008 Fiesta proudly boasted such baubles as ambient lighting, keyless entry, electric power steering,

USB ports, and a radiator grille that could have been crowbarred off the nose of an Aston Martin. The entire genre had shifted upmarket, and Ford were deftly moving with the times in order to maintain top-seller status. It didn’t exactly hurt the Mk7’s reputation that Ken Block built one into an absolute monster for Gymkhana 5, and of course Ford were wise to the hot hatch market potential. We’ll come onto the ST in due course, but first let’s consider the reprise of the Zetec-S nameplate. This essentiall­y packaged the ST looks with more affordable insurance and running costs, with younger buyers in mind; you could have it with a 94bhp 1.6 TDCi, but obviously the correct answer is the 123bhp 1.0 EcoBoost petrol turbo motor. A one-litre three-cylinder may not sound all that exciting, but these engines are insanely tuneable – we’ve seen them wound up to 170bhp on stock internals. The thinking person’s ST? It might just be.

Price today: £4,000

Top mods: As unbelievab­le as it may sound, you can find yourself with 160-170bhp (or more) from these teeny-tiny engines, and you don’t even have to crack the thing open. Stir in an Airtec front-mount intercoole­r, full 3in exhaust system (which might have to be a custom job – talk to Powerflow), AutoSpecia­lists Stage 2 induction and a Revo remap, and you’re laughing. Literally.

Top contacts: Airtec (airtecmoto­rsport. com), Powerflow (powerflowe­xhausts.co.uk) AutoSpecia­lists (autospecia­lists.co.uk), Revo (onlyrevo.com)

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