Ford Fiesta ST concept foretells future hot hatchS

Don't ask when, or how much, but this is happening: Ford will build a hot-hatch version of the Fiesta under the ST line that will sport a 180-hp turbo engine. The hoon may be strong with this one.

In an attempt to cash in on the rally/gymkhana events, Ford's Fiesta ST should be good for a 0-60 mph time of under seven seconds. Borrowing its paint color from the Raptor, this Fiesta will also use a six-speed manual to send power from the 1.6-liter engine to the front wheels, just as its big brother Focus ST will. There's also Recaro seats and 17-inch wheels, so you can feel sporty even though you're slightly slower than a stock V6 Toyota Camry.

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But the real test of this Pop Warner league player will be in handling, a balancing act that most sporty small cars solve by simply giving up on passenger comfort. If Ford could build a small, lightweight, speedy drivers' car, it could lock in a whole new generation of fans. If it misses, America's Craigslist shoppers will have something to look forward to.