Drive Type: manual
Exterior Color: Blue
Interior Color: Black
Leesburg, Ohio, United States
The 2014 Ford Fiesta ST doesn't go on sale until this summer, but fans of Global RallyCross will be able to catch the car in action before then. Announced ahead of the Chicago Auto Show, the Fiesta ST will be the car run by Ford GRC teams this season, and the model on display in Chicago will be the racecar built by Swedish tuner OlsbergsMSE driven by Tanner Foust and Brian Deegan. Ken Block and his newly renamed Hoonigan Racing Division will also be competing in the Fiesta ST.
The 2013 GRC season has not been announced yet, but the venues will also include the summer X Games events in Brazil, Spain, Germany and, of course, Los Angeles. Ford announced that it will be the sole automotive sponsor of this year's summer X Games, and it will be looking to bring home a gold medal this year after Block placed silver last year.
In other Ken Block- and Ford-related news, another Chicago debut will be a tuned Focus ST called the TrackSTer project. Built in cooperation with Block, Ford and automotive tuner fifteen52, the TrackSTer will get plenty of styling, performance and handling upgrades. Some of the add-ons include a performance exhaust and short-throw shifter from Ford Racing, a rebuilt engine, upgraded components such as the limited-slip differential, intercooler, engine controller and clutch as well as upgraded brakes.
Nearly every automaker doing business in the SUV or pickup truck segments offers a package designed to improve the off-road capabilities of its wares. But, of course, not all such factory kits are created equal. How, then, to separate the wheat from the chaff? Gather each of them up and put them through their paces, naturally.
The folks from Four Wheeler and PickupTrucks.com joined forces to run just such a comparison test, with the winner named the Ultimate Factory 4x4. A total of seven vehicles showed up to the fight: the 2012 Ford F-150 SVT Raptor, 2013 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon, 2012 Nissan Frontier PRO-4X and Xterra PRO-4X, 2012 Ram Power Wagon, and 2012 Toyota 4Runner Trail and Tacoma TRD T|X Baja Series.
With the contestants in place, the whole crew put each vehicle through a battery of tests that included skidpad and acceleration measurements, a hillclimb, a rocky stairstep course and a rock garden. Considering the nature of the beasts, on-road ride and comfort were not part of the routine.
These days, when you buy a new car, it's not unreasonable to expect a certain period of free maintenance to come along as well. Sometimes this is through the life of the warranty, in other cases a little less. But Ford Motor Company is going beyond those deals for at least one part of its cars. As of now, if you buy a set of Motorcraft brake pads for a Ford, Lincoln or Mercury model, you get free replacements for as long as you own the vehicle. The offer is good at Ford or Lincoln dealers and Quick Lane Tire & Auto Centers.
"We will replace the pads for as long as you own the vehicle," said Elizabeth Weigandt to Autoblog. She did clarify that the Motorcraft pads are generally for models from the '90s or newer. Also, to take advantage of this program, a person must return to the same dealer each time to get the free parts.
Of course, Ford isn't just handing out brake pads to anyone who walks by; there are certain stipulations. First, the components have to be worn down to less than three millimeters to be eligible, and the buyer still has to pay for the labor to install them. If the model is used as a fleet vehicle for commercial purposes like as a taxi or limousine, this offer also doesn't apply; the same thing for racecars. On the plus side, if you recently bought a set of pads from one of the participating locations, you're still in luck. The deal covers parts purchased as of July 1.