In 2008, we saw something quite surprising. A brand new Fiesta model, with a complete change of style and characteristics… Gone are the flat lines of the mk6.5, with it’s circa 2004 common text book styling. Gone is the dashboard styling, with it’s easy to please and straight to the point looks. And most importantly, gone are the pounds in which the predecessor piled on for no good reason. We’re edging back to Mk4/Mk5 sizing and weight now, with handling characteristics that have bettered the Mk6, along with a sturdier chassis, and just as much grip being produced. I welcome you, to Ford’s Fiesta revival!

The new range starts off with a typical 1.25-litre petrol variety with 60bhp or 82bhp. Best suited to anyone that never manages to get outside of a busy city with it’s nippy and quite revvy engine – 0-62 times really don’t warrant a statement here though! The 96bhp 1.4-litre is slightly faster, with a 0-62mph time of 12.2 seconds, yet apparently can return a respectable 49mpg. The 1.4-litre TDCi is the entry-level diesel. It offers plenty of low-down power for effortless overtaking – plus it’s capable of an impressive 67mpg. There’s also a 1.6-litre TDCi diesel and special mention should go to the ECOnetic version (powered by the same engine) which is exempt from Road Tax and capable of 78mpg. However the one you want to know more about is the Zetec-S! The 120bhp 1.6-litre is the fastest engine in the range available (at time of writing – we’ll come back to this) and is ideal for buyers looking for something sporty. It’s not a hot hatch per se, but its revvy, pleasing nature offers a good turn of speed – 0-62mph comes in 9.9 seconds and it has a top speed of 120mph. Performance wise, it’s a lot more potent that it’s earlier marks..

With an average weight of around 970 kg, and an engine power rating of 120bhp, let’s compare some crazy statistics for this new sporty model. The older model knocked out 88bhp/Tonne with it’s 98bhp and roughly 1120 kg’s are lard. I mean weight. The New Fiesta Zetec S pushes 120bhp from a 1.6-litre engine and weighs in at 970 kg as stated above. The result? 125bhp/Tonne. Hang on, That can’t be right I hear you say, as the older Mk6.5 Fiesta ST was producing 131bhp/Tonne with a 2.0-litre engine. We won’t state the glaringly obvious, and the fact that ford’s new 1.6 petrol engines produces a mere 28lb/ft less than the 2.0 petrol speaks for itself, but what we will say is this: If the ZS variety can perform such tasks, imagine what an ST model can do, let alone the pant-wetting thought of a long overdue Fiesta RS model.

Handling wise? the steering is precise, it corners crisply and there’s very little body roll which pleases most (making a note that the Zetec S has a firmer set-up). In town, the little Ford is easy to park and has a tight turning circle. Then there’s ‘stall prevention’, a nifty little innovation designed to help drivers in low speed manoeuvres by increasing engine revs. Very clever Mr Ford. Interestingly, get it onto the motorway and you can see why the Fiesta is seen by many as a ‘small big car’. It’s very stable, cruises easily and doesn’t feel out of place on those long journeys.

Of course if the Fiesta ZS isn’t enough i standard trim and you have no patience waiting for the ST model, then the self proclaimed ‘Fiesta 140’ might be up your street. Known as the “Mountune Performance kit” for the Mk7 Fiesta models with the 1.6 Ti-VCT engine (Zetec-S, Titanium or Sport). It consists of a high-flow air induction system, a high performance exhaust system including high-flow catalyst and tubular manifold, and re-calibration of Ford’s stock ECU, to produce [email protected] and 130lb/[email protected]. This boost in performance reduces the standard 0-60 mph time from 9.9 seconds to 7.9 seconds and edges past the previous Mk6 ST in standard trim.

So I hear you cry, what about the ST model? Is there any news? Well yes there is actually….