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Used test: Ford Fiesta ST vs Hyundai i20N verdict

The Fiesta ST and i20N are both small and speedy, but which paints the bigger smile across its driver's face and which is the better two-year-old used buy?...

Hyundai i20 N vs Ford Fiesta ST tails

Our verdict

Choose either of these two and, if you're a keen driver, you'll be grinning like a Cheshire cat. Both of them are wonderfully agile, eager and full of verve. 

The Hyundai i20N, with its rev-hungry engine and more neutral handling, is a well-honed and thoroughly enjoyable hot hatch. It's great to drive and a tad more civilised in everyday use than the Fiesta ST, especially when you're approaching its limits. However, its popularity and comparative rarity count against it here, because it's the more expensive to buy. 

The Ford Fiesta ST fuels your inner hooligan to an extent few hot hatches can match. It has a livelier engine than the i20N, and it's more agile and has slightly more playful handling. Add in the fact that it's much cheaper to buy at this age and, while we wouldn't blame you if you spent the extra on the Hyundai, it's the Fiesta ST that just sneaks the victory here. 

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1st – Ford Fiesta ST

Ford Fiesta ST 2021 front

For Flexible in-gear performance; more agile handling; more stable under braking; great driving position; cheaper to buy
Against Inconsistent steering; tighter rear seats; important safety kit optional from new

What Car? says Five stars out of five

Read our full used Ford Fiesta ST 2018-present review >>

Find used Fords for sale >>

2nd – Hyundai i20N

Hyundai i20 N 2021 front

For Easy to drive quickly; lots of grip; quicker outright acceleration; more comfortable
Against Not quite as exciting to drive; gets squirrelly under hard braking; less responsive engine; awkward boot shape

What Car? says Five stars out of five

Read our full used Hyundai i20N 2021-present review >>

Find used Hyundais for sale >>

Specifications: Ford Fiesta ST

Engine 3cyl, 1497cc, turbo, petrol
Power 197bhp 
Torque 214Ib ft
Gearbox 6-spd manual
0-60mph 6.6sec
Top speed 143mph
Test fuel economy 40.0mpg
Official fuel economy 42.8mpg
CO2 emissions 149g/km

Specifications: Hyundai i20N

Engine 4cyl, 1598cc, turbo, petrol
Power 201bhp 
Torque 224Ib ft 
Gearbox 6-spd manual
0-60mph 6.4sec
Top speed 142mph
Test fuel economy 40.0mpg
Official fuel economy 40.4mpg
CO2 emissions 158g/km