Gary Lord
13 June 2011

What is it?

After a News Analysis in the magazine last week (which highlighted Ford’s rather unusual position in having no ST or RS on its price list), it’s somewhat ironic that Ford dispatched to us one of its 500 special-edition Fiesta S 1600s the week after.

Of course, this is no hot hatch and isn’t heralded as such. Instead, it’s an attempt to ensure that Blue Oval forecourts have something that at least resembles a performance Ford until the 180bhp ST Fiesta arrives late next year.

What's it like?

So this new warm Fiesta is not quite at the required temperature; at 132bhp, it’s still short of the 138bhp factory-approved tuning package from Mountune. And although it 
has a 0-60mph time of 8.2sec, it doesn’t feel hugely quick. Also, to get the best performance (and noise, thanks to new, bigger pipes) you 
have to push the revs to the upper echelons of the counter.

The new exhaust does sound rorty, but because Ford as a car manufacturer has to adhere to noise regulations, the S 1600 doesn’t have the big decibels that you can get if you take your plain vanilla 1.6-litre petrol Fiesta to Mountune.

What you do get, though, is a Frozen White or Performance Blue paintjob (the latter a £470 premium) with contrasting stripes, plus a rear spoiler and some great new 17in white alloy wheels. Not forgetting blue stitching on your leather seats and steering wheel.

On the road, you soon realise 
that nothing has been done dynamically to the car, which is 
no bad thing. And with a bit more power, the sweet-handling Fiesta offers even more opportunity for you to enjoy yourself.

Should I buy one?

Ford will have no problem selling another in a long line of sporty Fiesta specials, especially as it has already shifted half of them.

 

Ford Fiesta S 1600

Price: £15,900; Top speed: 120mph; 0-62mph: 8.2sec; Economy: 47.9mpg (combined); CO2: 139g/km; Kerb weight: 1045kg; Engine: 4 cyls in line, 1596cc, petrol; Power: 132bhp at 6700rpm; Torque: 118lb ft at 4250rpm; Gearbox: 5-spd manual

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Comments
13

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

Sorry, as good as this car may be in the chassis department, I am sure I could negociate a deal (or find online somewhere) a better price on a Renault Sport Clio - which, lets face it will be a whole heap more fun.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

TegTypeR wrote:
Renault Sport Clio - which, lets face it will be a whole heap more fun.
and a helluva lot faster...

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

I find it odd that this car is being tested now as surely it was released some time ago - the one pictured is on a 10 plate after all. And as for the "new" wheels, they're the same ones that have been available on this generation of Fiesta ever since it came out.

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

catnip wrote:
I find it odd that this car is being tested now as surely it was released some time ago

I am sure it is in response to the piece in last weeks magazine.

 

 

It's all about the twisties........

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

catnip wrote:
surely it was released some time ago

It could well be that the picture used was of the 'original' S1600 released in early 2010. That car had the standard engine but was similar to this revised car in terms of appearance.

I see Autocar have wildly different prices at the top and bottom of this article....it is, of course, the less obvious more expensive price at the bottom of the article that is correct.


SDR

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

I must be getting old.

These 'fast Fords' (and some of their equivalents from Vauxhall) seem to look increasingly sad and tasteless boy racer specials to me - straight from dealership to McDonalds car park. I'm 'only' 36 and I don't generally think of myself as old before my time, but I would be embarrassed to be seen driving this. When I was l lad I used to love the old Mk 2 Fiesta XR2, did then-36 year olds look at that and think what a tragic great pile of naff that is, I wonder?

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

SDR wrote:
When I was l lad I used to love the old Mk 2 Fiesta XR2, did then-36 year olds look at that and think what a tragic great pile of naff that is, I wonder?

quite possibly, and it probably depends on whether you see the cars as "everyman" models or "chav". The marketing ability of brands wasn't as developed at that point, and so neither was quite the obsession with them,so there want as much lower middle class aspiration to own an Audi or BMW instead.

SDR

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

I suppose you're right Orange... I'm not sure which is the chicken and which is the egg. I think it was probably easier for 'middle class' people to relate to fast mainstream cars of old - think about the Sierra Cosworth (the saloon, not the whale tail). It was actually pretty understated when you look at it now - only a modest spoiler, more aggressive bumper styling and some reasonably tasteful sills and larger wheels differentiated it from the mainstream. It is easy to imagine how they appealed to a relatively broad section of working/middle class society. However today's fast Fiestas, Focuses and Corsas all look like escapees from the pages of Max Power - I'm not sure if it's that every aspiring middle class guy or gal wants a premium badge, or whether they just don't want to look like the local oik.

Personally I'd be happy to drive a fast car with a mainstream badge if it was good fun, reasonably tasteful and made financial sense, but the day I buy a car with stripes painted down it like a skunk will be a cold day in hell.

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

I have driven one of these - it's nothing like a renault sport clio which can be had for not far off the same cash (especially if you finance the car in some way shape or form), but to be fair to it I don't believe it's meant to be.

I actually quite liked it to drive, it's reasonably swift and eager to be pushed along, the seats were pretty nice too. All in It felt ten times better than the arthritic zetec S diesel that I drove - how ford customers find that level of performance acceptable for the money they are spending i'll never know. I even asked if they could be specified without the stupid stripes, the answer was no but the dealer would happily remove them before releasing the car.

Think of it more as the equivalent to something along the lines of the saxo vtr from yesteryear and it makes a bit more sense. Reasonable power, reasonably light and reasonable to insure - a bit of a first rung to proper cars really.

Re: Ford Fiesta S 1600

3 years 23 weeks ago

15 grand for a chavved up ford with racing stripes propelled by an underpowered zetec lump........err,ill pass

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