Of all the diehard rumors in the automotive realm today, few are as resilient as that of an alleged Ford Fiesta RS. Despite that the current-generation Ford Fiesta will soon be due for a replacement, and despite trusted intel that the RS-looking Fiesta prototype spied in Germany last year was no more than a disguised base model, we can’t help but keep the flame of hope alive.
Auto Express reported on the possibility of a Ford Fiesta RS way back in early 2015, citing a statement made then by Ford Performance’s Senior Vehicle Engineer Tyrone Johnson: “The current Fiesta has another two- and-a-half years before it’s replaced. We’ll update the ST within that period, and after that there could be something else.” More recently, on the eve of the 2016 Detroit Auto Show, Ford Executive VP of Marketing, Sales and Service Steve Odell told the British website that “there is room to expand” the RS brand.
As for specifics, Auto Express offers that a Ford Fiesta RS could mirror the drivetrains of the Audi S1 and VW Polo R, not to mention that of its Focus RS sibling, by offering all-wheel drive. The 1.6-liter EcoBoost engine from the ST-badged Fiesta would most likely be retained, but tuned to produce 250 or more horsepower.
But of course, ultimately, the notion of a 2017 Ford Fiesta RS (esp. with all-wheel drive) will inevitably come down to a simple business case. Ford built a Fiesta RS hot-hatch concept back in 2004 for exhibition at that year’s Geneva Motor Show, but the dollars and cents didn’t add up, forcing the automaker to abandon the project.