It’s been a roller coaster of a year with it, as I’ve learned that there are stages of ownership for the Fiesta ST.

The First Three Months: The Honeymoon Phase

In this first period, I was ecstatic. The car was perfect, and it was the best car in the world. The car could do no wrong, it was a toy. I put over 1,000 miles on it in a week.

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Months Three Through Nine: Hate

This is where the fun started to wear off. I started to notice all of the noises it made, mechanical or otherwise. I noticed that it was built with the grace and precision of a bomb going off. I noticed the exterior materials were metal made to the thickness of gift bag paper.

I noticed every little issue that it had, and hated it.

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Months Nine Through Twelve: Acceptance

Here is where I realized what I had. I had a car that was made with the intention of making a practical economy car into something that made you feel alive every time you prodded it. They took all of their budget, and spent all of it on cocaine and chassis tuning. It’s on rails. I know some of you will cry foul because it’s FWD, but once you’ve actually driven one in a setting where it actually matters, you don’t care.

All of the complaints I had about the build and interior quality went away. It is based off of a car that was designed to be priced below $15,000 10 years ago. For what it is, it’s fine. There are soft touch materials, there are hard materials, there are materials for everyone. There is no order, but it works. Everything is easy to use, and works.

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That said, it’s not a car for everyone. If you don’t live somewhere that has curves to enjoy, it’s not for you. If you place straight line speed first, it’s not for you. If you value comfort, it’s not for you. If you think going 40 in a parking lot is the pinnacle of automotive enthusiasm and the true test of a car, it’s not the car for you.

This is a car that needs to be driven on a mountain road as much as possible.

Things I’ve Ruined Along the Way:

In the past year, I have decided that I can’t leave well enough alone. I’ve ruined the NVH by straight piping it. I’ve tuned it to the point that the clutch is likely waiting to explode. Both of these things took the excitement up to 11. Tuning turns the Ecoboost into something truly special. It is extremely charismatic.

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