It’s not uncommon for automakers to send every trim level of a model, except the performance version, to the United States. But with the next-generation Fiesta, we wouldn’t be surprised if Ford does the exact opposite.
Ford already confirmed the updated Fiesta, unlike the current-generation model, won’t be a global vehicle, though it’s yet to announce whether the subcompact will be sold in the U.S. market. But a recent comment from Robert Stiller, Ford Germany’s director of small cars, suggests that Ford might bring part of the Fiesta lineup stateside — presumably the ST version.
“In North American — especially in the U.S. — China and Latin America, the demand for such cars is declining, and we are reacting accordingly,” Stiller told Romanian publication 0-100.ro.
Stiller interestingly didn’t definitively say that Ford is pulling the entire Fiesta range from its U.S. product offerings, but rather that it is “reacting accordingly.” The reason for his word choice likely could be the fact that completely abandoning the tiny hatchback might not be the appropriate action to take.
Although total Fiesta sales in the U.S. in 2016 were 31 percent lower than in 2013, when the model’s popularity peaked, dealers had no problems selling the Fiesta ST. Ford announced in November that combined sales of its three hot hatchbacks — Fiesta ST, Focus ST and Focus RS — were up 21.3 percent through the first 11 months of 2016, compared to the same period a year earlier.
“Buyers now know Ford is committed to affordable performance,” Jessica Bishop, Ford Focus brand manager, said November in a statement.
Ford essentially pledging allegiance to selling hot hatches in the U.S. isn’t the only reason we think it will bring the ST here, however.
When Ford announced the technical specifications for the upcoming Fiesta ST, it released pictures of a five-door ST along with them. And as it stands now, the U.S. is the only market that gets a five-door ST, instead of a three-door one.
All photos via Ford