Last year I was part of the Fiesta Movement, where Ford gave me a brand new 2014 Ford Fiesta ST to use for 5 months, gave me gas card, paid for insurance and said GO! I was one of 100 Fiesta Movement Agents to get a car, and only 20 of us were lucky enough to get the Fiesta ST. I had been waiting for the ST to come to the US, and it was incredible to be one of the first in the US to drive one . . . everyday for 5 months! If you've been following me on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter, you know had a blast driving it.
I had my Molten Orange ST, aka "Minxie", from July - December with adventure missions to go on each month, based on the theme. Our ST training started at Nashville Speedway where we put it through ABS braking, slalom, and on the main track to the infield. From there my Fiesta Movement adventures included everything from paddle boarding in Hawaii, shopping in NYC w/ InStyle Magazine's brand ambassador, Tai Beauchamp, horseback riding in the white mountains, virtual rally in a video game, seeing if I could be a chef, and contributing to my town of Littleton, NH (all on my YouTube channel).
I drove Minxie everyday as my daily driver and over the course of 5 months, and put almost 9,000 miles on it!
Immediately when I got into the ST, I felt right at home. I've been racing a Fiesta SE for the last 2 years in Rally America, so everything felt right. In fact, I've never raced anything other than a Fiesta in rally, so I was completely in-tune with it right off the bat.
It's not very often that I drive a car where I feel completely connected to it as driver, response wise. The Fiesta ST had amazing handling, braking & acceleration (1.6L turbo, 197 hp / 202 lb./ft. torque). I was really impressed. In short, I wish my Fiesta rally car performed as well as the Fiesta ST, in all areas.
My ST came fully loaded that includes the moonroof, Sync with My Ford Touch, navigation and the Molten Orange Recaro ST package. Of all the interior features, the Recaro seats are my favorite. When I go on a road trip, my back usually aches throughout the drive, but the Recaro's are extremely comfortable, durable, and the side bolsters hold your body in place to keep you from sliding in your seat. So far, it's the best seats in vehicle that I've ever come across.
I also really liked the connectivity of My Ford Touch, which is the touch screen (above) that has 4 quadrants to control entertainment, phone, navigation & climate. Once I got the voice commands down, the voice recognition worked surprisingly well. It's really cool being able to find fuel prices on the fly, hands free!
As far as real fuel economy, I drove from Littleton, NH to SOHO in Manhattan (338 miles) on one tank (12.4 gal.), driving conservatively at low revs, and always shifting up to the higher gear. This left me with 5 miles to empty, which equates to approximately 28 mpg, almost all highway.
The big question I always get, it "Would you buy a Fiesta ST?". My answer is absolutely!
Like most car buyers, there's some kind of connection they have with a vehicle that makes them want to purchase it. There were many for me with the Fiesta ST . . . I felt connected to it as a driver . . . great feedback and response - it did exactly what I wanted it to do, when I wanted it - immediately. It's extremely comfortable, economical for it's performance, has great hands-free features and connectivity for everyday driving. But the emotional connection that I had with it, was that it was so fun to drive, and the Molten Orange made me smile every time I walked out to the parking lot, even on cold winter days. I just couldn't wait to drive it. I'd think up places to go to, just so I could drive it. The last time I felt that way about a car, was with my 1996 BMW E36 M3. It's that feeling that's priceless.
I hope you know what that feels like, in whatever car that does it for you. If you haven't felt that feeling yet, keep testing different cars until you find it :).
For more of my photos from Fiesta Movement, go to http://www.fiestamovement.com/agents/verenamei