Ford Fiesta ST long-term test: report 2

It's the most entertaining hot hatch available for less than £25,000, but is the Ford Fiesta ST also a great everyday car? We're living with one to find out...

Ford Fiesta ST long-term boot

The car Ford Fiesta ST-3 (5-Door) 1.5T Ecoboost Start/Stop 6-Speed Manual Run by Louis Shaw, social media manager

Why it’s here To find out if the latest Ford Fiesta ST can be the ultimate everyday driver’s car

Needs to be Fun to drive and yet usable everyday, plus economical both on long journeys and around town.

Mileage 727 List price £25,300 Target Price £23,696 Price as tested £27,200 Options fitted Silver Fox metallic paint (£750) Full LED headlamps (£600) Driver Assistance Pack (£550) Official economy 40.1mpg (WLTP) Test economy 41mpg

4 October 2020 – More than a hot hatch

When did I first realise I was growing up? Well, perhaps unsurprisingly it wasn’t the day I decided to go for a hot hatch as my next car. No, it was the moment I realised that buying a car like the Fiesta ST isn’t all about driving fun. It’s also about what it can offer in addition to those traits. As far as I’m concerned, a great hot hatch, bought as your only car, is only as useful as its ability to perform as a “normal” day-to-day driver.

Fiesta ST rear static long-term

Being based on a regular five-door Fiesta, my ST is a usable size. While the rear seats offer adequate, more than abundant space for rear passengers (on par with something like a Volkswagen Polo but less than a Seat Ibiza), the front offers a nice amount of head room and leg room. While the car feels narrow, I was pleasantly surprised to find that my six-foot friend and I could sit next to each other without touching elbows as I shifted gear, and that's not always something you can say about a small cars.

And speaking of gears, the well-balanced clutch pedal and slick gear box make the ST easy to drive, whether you’re travelling quickly or pootling around town. Especially in the case of the latter; a heavy clutch pedal and awkward shift can make an arduous city journey more painful than it has to be. As someone who lives in Central London, this is a huge boon.

Fiesta ST gear lever long-term

While there’s no doubt that this is a powerful, more focused derivative of the Fiesta (the rear diffuser, red ST badging and 18inch alloys never let you forget) it is, for all intents and purposes a fundamentally, “normal” small hatchback underneath.

That means good front and rearward visibility, a properly usable boot (which actually trumps the Volkswagen Polo GTI's for luggage space) and respectable fuel economy, offering in the region of 40mpg on average, the ST strikes a balance between usable, useful and enjoyable every day.

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