Concentrated ST Formula Proves Just As Potent
I’m not the jealous type… usually. But I will fully admit to being somewhat of a Pouty Polly when I read executive editor Chris Paukert’s report after driving the then-new 2013 Ford Focus ST through the impossibly pretty southern French Alps region last June. I feel like a broken record saying this yet again, but hot hatchbacks hold a special place in my heart. And while I’m always giddy to drive any sort of small, turbocharged three- or five-door at home in Detroit, my jealousy was indeed piqued after hearing Paukert tell about the challenging yet breathtaking roads he encountered while driving the flamin’ yellow Focus. You know, the sort of roads that, from above, look like carelessly drizzled lines of icing on the frosted Alpen caps.
Several months later, I found myself piloting a Focus ST just west of metro Detroit, pitting it head-to-head against one of Autoblog’s perennial favorite cars, the Volkswagen GTI. It was fantastic – enough so that I fully stand behind my statement that in terms of balls-out performance, the Focus ST cannot be beat as far as today’s front-wheel-drive hatches are concerned.
But I can’t be jealous of Paukert any longer. I’ve just returned from driving the new Ford Fiesta ST – in European-spec three-door guise – along many of those same roads in southern France. And while I really do love the larger Focus ST, my experience in the Fiesta has led me to believe that I, perhaps, had the better time.