Fiesta ST200 named Britain’s best affordable driver’s car

Britain’s best affordable driver’s car under £30,000, named at this year’s Autocar Awards, is the Ford Fiesta ST200.

Enthusiasts have responded keenly to the 200PS version of the Fiesta ST, ordering 850 since it arrived a year ago in addition to 6,125 who chose the standard 182PS version in the same period.

The enthusiast’s motoring magazine and website declared Fiesta ST200 “the best-made, most convincing all-round ST yet”, thanks to steering enhanced to make the car’s initial rate of turn even more rigorous, the hot supermini’s tight-bodied response through bends, and 0-62mph in 6.7sec and a maximum 142mph where it’s legal to do so.

Driving fans have a long history of being attracted to fast Fords, having bought a total of 17,250 of the current Fiesta ST.  The 250PS Ford Focus RS, honoured at last year’s Autocar Awards with a maximum five stars for its “barmy and tremendously engaging” drive, has drawn a further 5,000 thrill seekers to the blue oval brand.

The larger Focus ST, available with petrol and diesel powertrains in both hatchback and estate body styles, the right-hand drive Mustang muscle car and newly launched GT supercar are the other models offering a performance Ford for every budget – from the £18,000 Fiesta ST to the over £420,000 GT.

The current Fiesta has scooped up 61 awards since launch in 2008, including this one from Autocar, 12 from sister publication What Car? and the balance from other auto media and experts.

The model’s 1.6-litre EcoBoost engine uses a new calibration to deliver 200PS – twice the power offered by its Fiesta XR2 predecessor 20 years ago – and 290Nm of torque, with an additional 15PS available for up to 20 seconds using overboost.

Unique storm grey body colour, 17in black machined alloys with red brake calipers and Recaro partial leather seats complete the Fiesta ST200’s specifications.