The prospect of a Ford Fiesta RS – a super-hot, high-performance version of Ford’s popular Fiesta subcompact – has been the subject of rumors for several years, and now, a Motoring interview with Ford Performance of Europe Director Leo Roeks has added fresh fuel to the fire. Asked by Motoring whether there might be a Ford Fiesta RS in the pipeline, or perhaps an automatic transmission for the Fiesta ST, Roeks could only grin and say: “I can’t tell you, but I’m very busy.”
Motoring claims to already have knowledge that both cars – a dual-clutch-transmission-equipped Ford Fiesta ST, and Ford’s first-ever Fiesta RS – are in development and due to launch by 2020. The Fiesta ST with DCT is much closer to introduction than the Fiesta RS, Motoring says, but it’s reportedly being held back because of the less-than-favorable reputation Ford’s dual-clutch “PowerShift” transmissions have garnered. The trouble-prone transmissions have been the subject of numerous lawsuits from owners around the world.
In fact, just last month Ford Australia was fined $10 million by the federal court for its poor handling of complaints involving the six-speed dual-clutch PowerShift in the Fiesta, Focus, and EcoSport, Motoring reports.
As for the Ford Fiesta RS, a model based on the previous, sixth-generation Fiesta wasn’t meant to be. But with an all-new, seventh-generation Fiesta now taking to Europe’s roads in force, and a new iteration of the Fiesta ST now arriving there, a Ford Fiesta RS could well find its way to market in the coming years. All-wheel drive seems likely – and plausible, given that the subcompact EcoSport crossover offers Ford Intelligent AWD – and the model would almost certainly make more than the 200 horsepower offered by the new ST, possibly using an upsized engine.
Both Ford’s 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter EcoBoost four-cylinders are candidates.
Disappointingly, if you happen to live in North America, the chances of the rumored Ford Fiesta RS or even the new Fiesta ST reaching the market are slim to none, as the automaker has announced its plans to all but abandon “traditional sedans” in the market.