With over 20 million offered, the mighty Ford Fiesta has been round for simply shy of fifty years now they usually stay some of the standard automobiles to change right here within the UK even if the final Ford Fiesta will roll off the manufacturing line this June, successfully spelling the top for the badge. The reality is that they’ve been the individuals’s alternative from the very starting, means again in 1976.
In actual fact, nearly yearly for the reason that early ‘90s, the Ford Fiesta has been Britain’s hottest new automobile, interval. So, it’s secure to say that there’s nonetheless greater than a pair on the street – and we will’t see them disappearing for at the least one other decade or two, both.
However with a well-stocked aftermarket providing efficiency and styling upgrades, and an entire neighborhood of fanatics devoted to tweaking Ford’s most well-known supermini, what are the ten finest mods over all eight generations of Ford Fiesta? Effectively, we expect we now have the solutions.
1. Alloy wheels
Let’s begin with maybe the preferred exterior modification for many Fiestas to hit the streets for the reason that late Nineteen Seventies: alloy wheels. Other than a few uncommon variants produced for the Asian market (which got here with 4x100PCD wheels), all Fiestas have the 4×108 stud sample in widespread, and that implies that there’s loads of alternative relating to a cheeky wheel swap. It additionally implies that most of the normal alloy wheels are interchangeable between fashions, making for a comparatively low cost and simple improve if, say you wished to suit second-hand Fiesta ST alloys to one of many Mk5, Mk6 or Mk7 base fashions.
That mentioned, the aftermarket has at all times been the way in which to go relating to exhibiting your individuality, and the reality is that almost all wheel types – and certainly colors – look nice on any Fiesta. Hottest over time appears to be motorsport-inspired rims, which is comprehensible contemplating Ford’s illustrious rallying historical past.
Simply be cautious relating to the sizes you select – early Fiestas such because the Mk2 and Mk3 weren’t designed to take big wheels, so rims which can be 15 inches in diameter are concerning the restrict with out main arch modifications. Then again, some fashionable variants such because the Mk7 and Mk8 truly got here with an 18-inch wheel choice for the manufacturing facility, so there’s much more scope for squeezing massive, broad wheels beneath the arches.
As a rule of thumb, don’t deviate greater than an inch or two from the usual diameter and also you’ll get all of the seems to be with out upsetting the drivability.
2. Stainless-steel exhausts
Technically we’re taking a look at a tuning mod designed to extra effectively take away waste gasses from the engine, releasing up a number of horses alongside the way in which. However, relating to the infant Ford, aftermarket exhausts are equally about seems to be, longevity and naturally, getting that deep efficiency rumble. In actual fact, for a lot of on the market, a efficiency exhaust would be the first (and infrequently final) modification carried out. Loads of in any other case normal Fiestas have benefited from a stainless-steel, cat-back improve over time.
Bolt-on aftermarket exhausts have many benefits, together with the truth that they don’t rust, so they need to final the lifetime of the automobile. They’re additionally comparatively reasonably priced, straightforward to put in, and obtainable for all Fiesta fashions, courting again to the very first Mk1 proper as much as the latest Mk8.
Keep in mind although, all exhausts are designed particularly for every mannequin, so that they’re not interchangeable between completely different variants or engines. However on the plus aspect, there are many respected producers who provide a alternative for nearly any price range.
3. Reducing springs
If you consider efficiency fashions, you concentrate on the Fiesta Mk6 and Fiesta MK7 ST, or maybe the Mk5 Fiesta Zetec-S. When you’re a little bit older it could be the Fiesta Mk3 RS Turbo or RS1800, however although all these fashions include manufacturing facility suspension tuned in direction of sporty dealing with, additionally they include the very same downside because the extra bread and butter examples – all of them sit means too excessive!
What with the Fiesta being a preferred automobile in all walks of life, it’s straightforward to see why Ford has historically opted for a journey top that works within the metropolis and on essentially the most difficult street surfaces, nevertheless it’s nonetheless potential to regulate the B-road dealing with and general seems to be a little bit extra in your favour utilizing a easy set of reducing springs.
In fact, they’re removed from easy. These shorter, stiffer coils are designed to decrease the centre of gravity to all however eradicate physique roll and to maintain chassis geometry at its optimum via the corners. Usually, only a 25mm drop could make all of the distinction in beefing up the dealing with and vastly enhance the visible enchantment.
There are different suspension mods, resembling uprated dampers or coilovers in fact, however the principle benefit of reducing springs is that they’re extraordinarily price efficient, and obtainable for almost each Fiesta mannequin to ever come out of the manufacturing facility.
The largest piece of recommendation we may give right here is to do your analysis and search for the easiest high quality. The massive-name suspension manufacturers spend tens of millions on improvement to make sure that their springs work successfully with the usual shock absorbers. That is probably not the case with a few of the cheaper gadgets on the market.
What’s a subwoofer? Merely put, it’s an enormous speaker able to reproducing the sub bass a part of the sound spectrum recorded in your music. With out one in your automobile, you’re simply not getting the complete image – an enormous a part of the frequency vary might be lacking, or on the very least extraordinarily muted.
Now, other than essentially the most fashionable Mk7 and Mk8 Fiesta fashions with the very best trim ranges, Ford don’t match a subwoofer as normal, which is one thing of a tragedy for actual music followers, irrespective of their precise style close to the tracks on their favorite playlist.
Nevertheless it’s an issue that’s simply remedied. Becoming an aftermarket subwoofer – and infrequently upgrading the remainder of your sound system on the identical time – has been some of the standard modifications for the reason that starting of time. What’s extra, any Fiesta mannequin can profit from a sonic improve.
Though there are a number of vehicle-specific choices in the marketplace, for essentially the most half subwoofers are common fitment and comparatively straightforward to put in, even for the modding novice. There are additionally many, many guides on-line that cowl every mannequin.
The in need of it, although, is, by hooking up a sub to your sound system, you may construct an excellent setup with an emphasis on full replica and high-end sound high quality. In automobile audio phrases, having a sub is not only about being loud.
5. Alloy intercoolers
Again within the ‘90s, the king of all Fiestas was the RS Turbo. The clue is within the title – it was the primary mannequin to spice up energy utilizing a turbocharger. Unusually sufficient, and regardless of its recognition, when the RS Turbo was phased out in 1992, Ford didn’t provide one other petrol-powered turbocharged Fiesta till the launch of the Mk7 in 2008, which included an entire vary of EcoBoost engines, together with the 1.6-litre variant within the 200-horsepower Fiesta ST.
In any case, these days nearly each Mk7 and Mk8 mannequin is turbocharged for each energy and effectivity, and this consists of the diesel fashions too. This additionally implies that they’ll all reap the advantages of a easy intercooler improve.
Your intercooler has the essential job of cooling the new air getting into the engine after it’s handed via the turbocharger. Colder air is denser – it has extra oxygen by quantity – and this helps the engine produce extra energy. So, the important thing relating to any kind of tuning is to be as environment friendly as potential relating to cooling.
Aftermarket alloy intercoolers not solely dissipate warmth quicker than normal gadgets, however typically have a bigger capability or front-mounting place designed to choose up most airflow. These facets make them much more environment friendly, typically leading to a big energy hike and, most significantly, elevated security for the engine by providing elevated safety from detonation.
An alloy intercooler improve is barely appropriate for the turbocharged fashions in fact, however they at all times provide a cheap tuning mod with comparatively straightforward set up.
6. Port mapping
A port map – or a remap of the ECU software program via the diagnostic (OBD2) port – is undoubtedly the best strategy to bolster the efficiency of your fashionable Fiesta. Maybe better of all (with various features relying on completely different engine specs), a remapping specialist can tweak the settings on each single mannequin launched for the reason that Mk5, which was launched over 20 years in the past.
All digital gas injection (EFI) programs are regulated by an Engine Management Unit (ECU). This unit is a small pc that units varied parameters resembling ignition timing, fuelling and enhance strain, governing the quantity of energy and torque – and the gas financial system – that the engine is ready to muster.
For the reason that introduction of EFI within the Mk3 Fiesta, it has been potential to optimise the digital software program for higher efficiency. Within the previous days, this meant ‘chipping’ the ECU, or bodily opening the casing and soldering in a modified microchip. However, by the point the Mk5 Fiesta got here alongside within the late ‘90s, standardised OBD2 ports had develop into normal tools on nearly all of European automobiles, providing a direct hyperlink to the ECU. These not solely permit mechanics to carry out diagnostics just by plugging in a pc however provide a handy means for mapping specialists to vary the software program (often known as the map) contained inside.
Remapping is all about optimisation of those engine settings. The essential Ford software program has to cater for big variations in altitude, gas high quality and temperature, in order that any Fiesta can work in any excessive local weather, anyplace on the planet.
For many international locations (together with right here within the UK) we don’t need to be fairly so cautious about excessive altitude motoring or essentially the most excessive temperatures, so a software program remap is a straightforward strategy to optimise each setting for the very best efficiency, whereas conserving all the things inside strict security parameters.
7. Fast shifters
A fast shift – in any other case identified a brief shift equipment – is a tool engineered to shorten the throw of your gear stick (i.e. the space it has to journey between the gears) to make gear modifications extra exact and as much as 30% faster.
The essential premise is that the much less time you spend shifting with the clutch in, the extra time you’re on the accelerator. This not solely means faster acceleration however has secured the brief shift the title of final racecar-inspired mod.
Low cost and comparatively straightforward to put in, fast shift kits can be found for many fashions for the reason that Mk2 Fiesta, though their simplicity in design, ease of fitment and beginning costs of round £50 for later fashions appears to make them significantly standard for Fiesta Mk6, Mk7 and Mk8 variants.
And it’s not simply the extra performance-oriented choices such because the Fiesta ST and Zetec S which can be catered for. The whole lot from the 1-litre EcoBoost to the Duratorq diesels can profit from a brief shift equipment – all you should begin off with is a Fiesta with a handbook gearbox.
8. Air filter upgrades
There’s little question about it: a efficiency filter improve is a traditional tuning mod and one which appears to be as previous as time. Tuning, for essentially the most half, is all about getting the utmost quantity of air into the engine, so extra gas might be burned for an even bigger bang within the cylinders. That is what produces extra energy.
Efficiency filter upgrades have been obtainable for each Fiesta since inception and, regardless of various in design for every particular mannequin, the premise has at all times been the identical – they’re capable of let via extra air (and do it quicker) than normal whereas nonetheless being efficient in filtering out any doubtlessly dangerous particles.
Maybe better of all, this sort of improve doesn’t need to be costly and even time consuming to suit. Costs begin at round £40 for a efficiency panel filter that’s put in immediately into the usual airbox, and rises to a little bit extra for a high-performance induction equipment that replaces half or the entire manufacturing facility consumption.
One of many most cost-effective and only modifications to unencumber a number of additional horses for almost any Fiesta mannequin.
9. Inside mods
Searching for finest styling mods on a strict price range? Then look no additional than your inside, the place you’ll discover you may make a few of the most cost-effective and best tweaks. Moreover, typically it truly is what’s on the within that counts; in spite of everything, it’s right here that you simply’ll spend most of your time.
From the best upgrades, resembling a complicated new set of mats, LED inside lighting or an alloy gear knob, to these the place you’ll want to interrupt out the spanners to do the becoming, it’s a comparatively simple job to rework any base mannequin inside into one thing a little bit extra particular.
Scouring the labeled adverts and on-line public sale websites is the important thing to frugality right here. An entire new inside might be had from a automobile breaker for a fraction of the worth of a single seat from a most important seller. The thought, as you’d anticipate, is to seek out the specified components from a better trim stage and match them to your individual automobile. It is a idea that’s been round ever for the reason that first modifier bought their arms on a set of seats from a Mk1 Fiesta XR2 and popped them into their 990cc base mannequin.
However whether or not it’s leather-based seats and doorcards from a particular version, Fiesta ST sports activities seats, carpets or perhaps a new dashboard and steering wheel, the most effective half is – assuming you’re making the swap from the identical variant (e.g. Mk7 Fiesta components in one other Mk7 Fiesta) – that they’ll at all times slot into place completely. Simply be sure to be careful for the variations in three-door and five-door fashions; not each half is interchangeable from the B-pillar again.
Then again, if becoming aftermarket seats with bonafide motorsport credentials is extra the look you’re after, the most important seat producers provide model-specific subframes, permitting their mounted again buckets or reclining sports activities seats to bolt straight into your automobile with out the necessity for any customized modifications. These can be found to cater for all fashions, from the Mk1 Fiesta all the way in which as much as the Mk8.
10. Roll cages
There’s no denying that there aren’t many different mods that appear like they imply enterprise fairly a lot as any kind of roll cage. Whereas they is probably not the most affordable modification or the best to suit, motorsport-inspired roll cages are notable merely due to their excessive recognition. Once more, quite a lot of that is as a result of rally heritage coveted so dearly within the modified Ford neighborhood.
The whole lot from easy bolt-in rear cages and full-on FIA-approved weld-in gadgets can be found for all Fiesta fashions, however they’re not merely for seems to be, and even solely a security machine for when issues go mistaken. No, a roll cage may considerably enhance your dealing with.
The thought is to create a stiffer chassis by triangulating key factors across the automobile. This helps preserve the optimum geometry throughout essentially the most excessive cornering. In fact, most of that is solely relevant when truly going racing, and most cages fitted for street or present use are primarily to supply a very good diploma of motorsport styling. However we will’t see something mistaken with that both.
Nervous how all these mods will have an effect on your insurance coverage? Learn our weblog on how standard modifications have an effect on your insurance coverage premiums.
Automobile insurance coverage in your modified Ford Fiesta
When you resolve to change your Ford Fiesta, you may discover that insurers refuse to cowl your freshly kitted out automobile, particularly in case you’ve added efficiency modifications. As a specialist insurance coverage dealer, we’re capable of cowl modified, traditional and high-performance automobiles the place others can’t. Name us on 0800 369 8590 for a Ford Fiesta insurance coverage quote or guide a callback at a time that fits you.
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