Car Culture

This 380-horsepower Ford Fiesta rally car is ready to tear it up

This is one Fiesta that's sure to live up to its name.

M-Sport

Ford's next-generation Fiesta has been in the public eye for little more than a week, but already, one group turned it into a World Rally Championship racer, and the result is stunning.

M-Sport's Fiesta WRC is a menagerie of vents, wings, winglets and more vents. It looks as if a road-going Fiesta drove through a series of sharp objects, most of which ended up stuck to the body. But it's all there for a reason -- aerodynamics. This is one Fiesta that won't handle like all the rest.

How much aero is too much aero? That's a trick question, because you can never have enough aero.

M-Sport

Nor will it hustle like the rest. Its 1.6-liter, direct-injected EcoBoost I4 engine puts out a whopping 380 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque, and that's with an intake restrictor! Power makes its way to all four wheels through a six-speed sequential transmission and an active center differential.

It wouldn't be a rally car without obscenely expensive and complicated suspension components, and the Fiesta doesn't disappoint there, either. Its MacPherson struts feature Reiger external reservoirs with fully adjustable rebound and compression. Four-piston calipers squeeze ventilated brake discs to bring the speed down when necessary.

Nearly this entire car was designed from scratch to meet the latest World Rally Championship regulations. The car will start racing in the 2017 season, with drivers Sebastien Ogier and Ott Tänak. Ogier is the current world champion, but when Volkswagen shut down its rally operations, it left Ogier without a home. Tänak was named WRC Driver of the Year, and he worked with M-Sport to build this new car.

You can catch the Fiesta WRC's first race in January, when the championship begins in Monte Carlo.