21 May 2004

There will be not just one, but two, hot new Fords to discover at the British Motor Show: the Fiesta Zetec-S TDCi we previewed last week, and this fast Mondeo oil-burner, the 137mph ST TDCi.

It takes Ford into the realm of tarmac-mauling diesels for the first time. With the looks and kit from the flagship 3.0-litre petrol V6 ST220, including part-leather seats, plunging front and rear bumpers, a lower ride height and sports suspension, the 153bhp ST TDCi will only be distinguishable by its badge.

The 2.2-litre TDCi engine is derived from the Mondeo’s standard 2.0-litre DCi. Serving up 295lb ft at 1800rpm, Ford estimates a 0-62mph dash of 8.7sec, just over a second slower than its petrol sibling.

Company car drivers will benefit from the ST TDCi’s 19 per cent tax bracket, and should regularly see the right side of 50mpg, according to Ford’s economy claims. Prices haven’t been set yet, but the diesel ST should cost around £21,490, a handy saving over the £23,290 ST220 flagship. The 2.2-litre diesel will also be available under the bonnet of the more luxurious Mondeo Ghia X.

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