2014 Ford Fiesta ST

2014 Ford Fiesta ST

Episode 3346
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

Here at MotorWeek, we’re always looking for cheap thrills…performance wise that is…and while they have become somewhat more readily available of late, many options are still a little too watered down for our tastes. That brings us to the Ford Fiesta ST. Is America ready for a world class high performance subcompact from Ford? Well, we sure are!

Performance oriented versions of existing cars are nothing new and usually come with a 20 or 30% boost in power. Well how about 65%? That’s what we’re talking about here in the 2014 Ford Fiesta ST.

Its 1.6–liter turbo I4 sees numbers climb from 120–horsepower and 112 lb-ft. of torque to 197 and 202 respectively! And while those aren’t supercar high, they are certainly high enough for a good time. And, with the engine’s instant response, the numbers feel even higher. 

Just about everything has been major upgraded here, including suspension, brakes, and steering.

The humble Fiesta was already a solid handler for a bargain basement subcompact, but now it’s gone full on Go-Kart. With a firm feel that’s more like a mid-size sport sedan than pocket rocket. 

We’re talking true point and shoot fun here! This car yearns for you to get on it and stay on it. It even has a very pleasing exhaust note, inside the cabin, thanks to a sound symposer; powerful, but not too loud at all.

Off the line, torque steer is surprisingly minimal, despite big hits from the turbo, accompanied by some cool waste gate noise that put smiles on our faces. A strong clutch aids the launch, and you hit 60 in 7.1–seconds. Again, nothing for purveyors of exotic cars to lose sleep over, but in this little car it mean just plain fun, as you grin your way to the end of the ¼-mile in 15.3–seconds at 93 miles-per-hour. The shifter is fast and direct.

The ST…Sport Technologies…engineers added Torque Vectoring Control, but weren’t able to dial quite all of the understeer out. But just about, as it sticks really well and feels exceptionally neutral for a front-driver, with very little roll. 

The interior is spiffed up with aluminum trim, enhanced gauge cluster, and well bolstered Recaro seats. Ford’s MyFord Touch screen is here as well, and most found words on the display too small for easy use, and ended up using voice command. 

Rear seats are more spacious than many other pocket hot rods, and you can fold them down to expand the 10.1 cubic foot cargo bay to make the ST a purposeful hauler in more ways than one.

The last Sport Technologies effort we sampled was the Focus ST, and as much as we loved that, the Fiesta ST has the same amount of awesomeness in a smaller and lighter package. It’s just simple, pure, driving fun. Sure a Corvette can beat it in every performance category, but is it more enjoyable? Well that’s doubtful.  

So yes, the Fiesta ST is a lovely piece of work and we liked just about everything about how it goes. But, many of our staff were less enamored with the exterior design. 

The 5-door hatch-only ST is definitely tricked out, though; sharp and evil looking from most angles. But, with way too much grille up front; like a stupid grin showing way too many teeth. Poor rear visibility from the thick C-pillars didn’t help either. And some thought the brake calipers would benefit from some bright paint to sport-en the look up even more. 

But cosmetics aside, this is the most pure joy we’ve ever extracted from a front-wheel-drive car. All while doing fine on gas. Government Fuel Economy Ratings are 26-City, 35-Highway, and 29–Combined. We fit right in a 29.1 miles-per-gallon of Regular.

And all for an amazingly low price starting at $22,225. High performance on a budget, that’s what a lot of us are looking for, and the 2014 Ford Fiesta ST delivers that best.

So much so we delivered it our Drivers’ Choice Award as Best Subcompact of the year. We love it!

Along with the Focus ST, Ford has got quite a great thing going and should really promote the ST lineup more, as they could be real halos for the brand. We think that most Americans are well beyond the rear-drive only bias when it comes to performance cars. And while putting more spunk into an existing model is not a new idea, this one is as well executed as they come.


  • Engine:
  • Horsepower: 197
  • Torque: 202 lb-ft.
  • 0-60 mph: 7.1 seconds
  • 1/4 mile: 15.3 seconds @ 93 mph
  • EPA: 26 mpg city/ 35 mpg highway
2023 BMW X7 Driving

2023 BMW X7

Should Keep The BMW Faithful Coming Back For More

Episode 4238
Lucas Oil "Keep That Engine Alive"Auto Value and Bumper to BumperTire Rack "The Way Tire Buying Should Be"

While BMW got serious about their SUV game around the same time as most other luxury brands, it took them until just a few years ago to deliver a 3-row example. This year, that X7 is updated with new style and new tech. So, let’s see if that makes it the ultimate premium 3-row family machine.

When it comes to utility vehicles, bigger seems to be better for a lot of people. So, for BMW, there’s none bigger or better than the X7 3-row utility, which for 2023 gets a comprehensive update after just 4-years on the market. That includes a facelift to bring it more in line with the new 7-series carline, which is to say joins the more vertical, aggressive grille party. Also, the actual headlights have been moved lower in the front fascia, with squinty DRLs above for the first time on a BMW. In back, taillights take on a 3D posture, with a new chrome bar connecting them.

There are also multiple new M Sport packages to choose from to spice up the exterior, with larger air intakes up front, high-gloss black trim, upgraded exhaust, cascade grille lighting, and 22-inch wheels, as well as M Sport brakes…

…and the interior too, with aluminum trim and exclusive steering wheel. But, by far the biggest change inside for ‘23 is a new dashtop curved display that eliminates the typical BMW well-hooded gauge pod and blends 12-inch Live Cockpit Pro into the 15-inch infotainment touchscreen, which now features iDrive8. Both a Head-Up Display and a large panoramic sunroof are standard.

2023 BMW X7 Interior Dashboard

Whether set up for 2 or 3 passengers, 2nd row seat room remains plentiful, and though the X7 doesn’t look ungainly large like many of its competitors, access to the 3rd row is quite good. Cargo space is reached through a fairly unique, Range Rover-style, split tailgate, which is quite oddly satisfying to watch unfold. There’s room for 48.6 cubic-ft. of goods behind the 2nd row, with a max of 90.4 cu.-ft.

The base xDrive40i has always been the sensible choice, even more so now with a new inline-6 turbo getting a significant bump in horsepower from 335 to 375, and a 48-volt mild-hybrid system that results in a total of 398 lb-ft. of torque.

At our Mason Dixon test track, there was enough to blast this big beast to 60 in just 5.4-seconds. That’s only about half a second slower than the V8 did the deed back in 2019. Making that optional 523-horsepower V8 simply overkill at this point. Our best ¼-mile pass was 13.9-seconds at 100 miles-per-hour. All X7s get a quick shifting sport-tuned 8-speed automatic transmission, which adds a new Sprint Function that finds the lowest usable gear instantly and maxes electric boost with a hold of the left shift paddle. What fun!

New looks and updated tech are cool, but BMW has also addressed dynamics as well, with a retuning of all chassis systems, including the optional Dynamic Handling Package which adds adaptive suspension with roll stabilization and uses GPS and camera data to prepare for what’s coming. We’re not sure if our slalom course was anticipated, but the X7 sure felt well-equipped to handle it. All-wheel drive is standard on all X7s, along with comprehensive drive modes.

In our braking runs, the pads bit down hard quickly, stopping us from 60 in just 115-feet with very little nosedive.

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Government Fuel Economy Ratings for the 6-cylinder are 21-City, 25-Highway, and 22-Combined. We averaged just 21.0 miles-per-gallon on Premium.

There’s an average Energy Impact Score; 13.5-barrels of oil yearly, with CO2 emissions of 6.5-tons.

Pricing starts at $78,845, and it’s a significant step up from there to $104,095 if you want the V8. Even more reason to stick with the 6-cylinder as far as we’re concerned.

It took the ultimate driving machine folks quite a bit of time to enter the 3-row family crossover segment, but when they did, they were able to create their largest utility ever and keep it consistent with their values. For 2023, the BMW X7 gets even more dynamic, embraces new tech, and looks better too. All things that should keep the BMW faithful coming back for more.


  • Engine: I-6
  • Horsepower: 375
  • 0-60 mph: 5.4 seconds
  • 60-0 Braking: 115 feet (avg)
  • MW Fuel Economy: 21.0 MPG
  • Transmission: 8-speed automatic
  • Torque: 398 lb-ft.
  • 1/4 Mile: 13.9-seconds at 100 mph
  • EPA: 21 City / 25 Highway / 22 Combined