Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Ford USA Announces Fiesta R2 Rally Kit with 168HP for New Fiesta Sport Trophy Championship

Aspiring rally fans buckle up, as this is your chance to follow in the footsteps of Mikko Hirvonen, Jari-Matti Latvala or Ken Block. Already offered throughout Europe, the Ford Fiesta R2 rally package has now become available in the U.S. Those that buy the rally-prepped Fiestas will be able to compete in a new championship, called Fiesta Sport Trophy, in the Rally America Series 2WD class, starting from 2011.

The winner of the Fiesta Sport Trophy Championship will be awarded a ride in the R2 class in a Fiesta at Wales Rally GB and have the opportunity to compete in the Fiesta Sport Trophy International Shootout. The grand prize is a year's residential placement at M-Sport, working alongside the BP Ford World Rally team.

The R2 package was developed by M-Sport, Ford's long lasting WRC partner. A number of modifications were applied to the stock Fiesta, starting with the 1.6-liter Ti-VCT engine. New pistons, conrods, camshafts and other parts increased the small four-pot's output to 168 hp (125 kW) and 134 lb-ft (182 Nm), a 40% gain over the production model.

Other upgrades include a five-speed Sadev sequential gearbox, with flat shift gear cut, Reiger adjustable dampers paired with Eibach springs and ventilated disc brakes with four-piston calipers. Naturally, there's also a roll cage to protect the driver and navigator in case of an accident.

Besides the full R2 kit, there's also going to be a Stage 1 kit, offering drivers a lower-cost entry point. This too features a series of new parts and upgrades, like new ball joints and dampers, more power and a limited-slip differential.

The R2 package is now available for order through Team O'Neil Motorsports.

By Csaba Daradics