Ford took the stage at the 2008 Beijing Motor Show to unveil an "S" version of its upcoming Fiesta. Something very, very similar will be heading this way later in the year or early next.
S is for sporty
Except for the modified headlights, sportier XR-style spoiler and grille, and Chinese market badging, the Fiesta S is the same car that was revealed in Geneva earlier this year. Nonetheless, the new Fiesta is a handsome -- and, whisper it, sporty -- vehicle with slanted lights, steeply angled glass and bulging wheel arches.
Party on, it's Fiesta time!
Creases and expressive lights are a big part of Ford's "kinetic" design theme, with LED stop lights present on the Fiesta models shown thus far. It's a long way from the "Germanic" -- read VW -- styling of the current Fiesta.
Throughout last year Ford displayed a series of Fiesta design concepts -- all called Verve -- which featured interior controls modelled on those found on mobile phones. Wild colour schemes and concept car detailing aside, little has been lost in transition to production.
Euro models will feature a 3.5mm auxiliary jack and a USB slot to make connecting your favourite MP3 player a snap. Bluetooth hands-free will also be available.
Three doors down
As with all hatches conceived in Europe, there'll also be a three-door version of the next Fiesta. Three petrol engines will be on offer in Europe (a 44kW or 59kW 1.25-litre, 67kW 1.4-litre and 85kW 1.6-litre), as well as two turbo-diesels (a 50kW 1.4-litre and 66kW 1.6-litre). These will be matched to either a four-speed auto or five-speed manual.
Places like America and Asia, where hatches are spurned in favour of sedans, will get a four-door Fiesta sedan, not unlike this Verve concept car.
No more boring badges
Ford's found its styling mojo again and this newly rekindled creativity has spread to the company's badging too. This badge was present on the Geneva Motor Show cars but was replaced by something duller and more corporate in Beijing.