This is the Year of the MPG. Honda was pushing its CR-Z, there were plenty of modified Toyota Yaris’ (plural: Yari?), and Ford revealed modified Fiestas like candy from a busted open piñata. It seems gas mileage in the form of a little sport compact car is the wave of the future, but not just in stock form. These manufacturers highlighted that these cars go from high mileage on the streets to high horsepower or killer handling on the track. [MotoIQ insider fact] The Whiteline guys even disclosed the new Focus RS can handle a rally course in stock form like a monster truck can overtake a speed bump.
|There was even a Fiesta rally simulator so you can test your racing skills in the middle of the Vegas convention center.|
Ford featured Fiestas built by 12 different tuners. Ford Racing Performance Parts stepped up its game announcing the Fiesta R2 Rally package will be available in the US. Ford’s WRC partner since 1997, M-Sport, developed the kit that converts the five-door production Fiesta to rally specification. The kit includes pistons and connecting rods, cams and valve springs, injectors, and a sump baffle kit to increase the 1.6L Ti-VCT 4 cylinder engine to 168 horsepower, a 40% improvement! Other upgrades include Reiger adjustable dampers with Eibach springs, 5-speed Sadev sequential gearbox that allows full throttle upshifts, ventilated disc brakes with four piston calipers, and multipoint roll cage. Team O’Neil Motorsports is the official reseller and authorized installer for the R2 kits, and only cars prepared by Team O’Neil will be eligible for the U.S. Fiesta Sport Trophy Championship. Ford Custom Accessories will also offer a body-side tattoo or 18 different graphics to customize their Fiesta, as well as illuminated shift knob or rear spoiler.
The Steeda Autosports Fiesta was modified with a short shifter and cold air intake under the hood, lowering sport springs, retuned dampers, thicker sway bars, and a front strut tower brace. H&R Springs 3 door Fiesta (above left) has a color-matched body kit with large rear spoiler, vinyl wrap, and gold wheels. There was also the Ford Fiesta by L&G Enterprises equipped with an integrated iPad command center and the Ford Racing Performance Parts Fiesta outfitted with a production based turbocharged 2.0L EcoBoost engine bored out to 2.3L and claiming 350 horsepower.
We’ve all seen the ridiculous pirouetting skills of Ken Block’s Gymkhana Fiesta before (above right), so to see the car in person is simply kick-ass. Block’s 2011 Fiesta is powered by a 2.0L Ford Duratec engine, boosted with a Garrett TR30R turbo, and tuned with the Elcentric ECU. It uses a 6-speed pneumatically-shifted sequential gearbox and three mechanical limited-slip differentials for the all-wheel-drive system. The Fiesta has a custom Olsbergs MSE machined front and rear subframe, carbon fiber body panels with a custom front splitter, custom Ohlins electro-controlled remote reservoir coilovers, and six-piston front and four-piston rear calipers. If you can manage to replicate these mods in your Fiesta, strip the interior and throw in a roll cage and maybe then you’ll be waltzing around Walmart shoppers in motorized scooters! We can all dream, can’t we?[Actually, we’ve even had a much closer look at this car’s older brother over a year ago. Check it here. -DC]
This Fiesta came to the show clothed in an electric blue ensemble, but was painted in the signature European rally spec outfit during the show by Camilo Pardo, designer of the Ford GT, to be later sold at an auction benefiting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.