the fiesta si

The Si was introduced to the UK in March 1994 when the massive change came to the fiesta range. The car was heavily updated and received a new chassis layout, stiffening to the shell, new features as standard such as power steering on most models, side impact bars, airbag, immobilizer and sunroof. This was all a marketing scheme to appeal to the new car buyers giving the car greater features than its competitiers. This is known as the Mk3.5 Fiesta.

Fiesta Si

The hot hatch was a victim of its own success in the early nineties. With the introduction of the Fiesta XR2i, RS turbo, Escort XR’s and RS’s, amongst other manufacturers efforts like the Peugeot 205 GTI’s, Renault 5 GT Turbo, VW Golf GTI’s, Vauxhall Astra GTE all made up a significant era. The joyrider reigned supreme sending insurance premiums through the roof and causing many people – who would ideally be the target audience for these pocket rockets – to be priced out of the fun. Something had to be done. Ford lay to rest the RS Turbo badges and XR ones in favour of something with less ‘credibility’ to the thieves. So they created the Si..

It looked like no other fiesta to date with exclusive bumpers, adorning front fog lights sitting flush in the curving shape of the fresh new lines of the Fiesta. At the rear, the bumper was changed for a deep smooth bumper in keeping with the lines of the front of the car. Arch spats were affixed to the front arches to give it more width and to give it a sportier appearance and it came with the same black spoiler as the XR2i did.

Fiesta Si

Two engines were available in the Si. A 1.4 update of the CVH 8v engine similar to the one used in the XR2i 8v, and one of the brand new Zetec engines recently unleashed into the Ford cars. The Zetec uses a double overhead cam design, with 16valves and electronic fuel injection. The car pulls very well when being driving in urban areas and performs equally as pleasing on the open road with plenty of torque on tap – 134Nm at 3000rpm quicker one of the two to have, pushing 90bhp at 5500rpm – to pull the car through the gears rather than having to rev the car to make if shift. The 1.4 8v is by no means shabby! It will out perform many of its rivals and develops 75bhp at 5500rpm and 109Nm of torque at 2750rpm.

Performance of the two cars was very good considering both cars were extremely cheep to insure, which was the purpose of the cars in the first place, with the 1.6 Zetec reaching the 60mph mark in 10.4seconds and the 1.4 pulling itself to the magic mark in 12seconds flat. The 1600 would continue on to 110mph, although some may argue it will go faster, but would have to be proved on a large piece of ground away from traffic, of course. We don’t want to get caught red handed do we? The 1400 would crack the ton and inch its way over to 104mph.

Fiesta Si

Inside the Si was a pleasant surprise.
The 1.6 16v model came with large winged seats in raven jigsaw pattern which was very tasteful for a Ford Fiesta which can be somewhat of let down in the interior department. The seats proved to be a great success, and personally I can state that after thousands of miles of travelling they are still the most comfortable seats I’ve sat in. they are highly supportive around the shoulders and sides, providing much needed support when you’re taking it for a country lane thrash.
The 1.4 came with the same trim pattern but without the winged seats, instead the car earned the same seats as used in the XR2i, but with the fresh dark trim. Driver airbag was a standard fitment to all the Mk3.5 Fiestas, and a passenger airbag was also an option, although at the time was a very expensive one, therefore very few Si’s have this option fitted.

One the Si’s best traits is its handling. The revised chassis design is still excellent to this day and on the 1.6 16v the car was fitted with front and rear anti-roll bars, stiffened and lower sports suspension and wide wheels, with lightweight alloys as an optional extra. With a few aftermarket modifications such as fitting even lower and stiffer springs the handling is transformed even further allowing it to out handle many cars 10 years newer!

Fiesta Si

In 1996 the production of the Si range stopped. The car was
available from an L-reg to a rare P-reg. The Fiesta Si was available
in Tourmaline Green, Tourmallard Green, Mallard green, Ash Black,
Java blue, Dark Aubergine, Nouveau Red, Petrol blue and a very
rare silver option was available.

The Fiesta Si was and still is a superb car for the price they can be bought at, with a good, strong, free-revving engine that’s, if treated properly, will last for well over 150,000 miles, with some cars nearing 200,000 miles and still running well. This site is dedicated to the Fiesta Si and a wealth of information is available, and if you can’t find what you’re looking for, ask on the forums!