New Ford Fiesta RS spotted testing

Ford could be on the cusp of revealing an all-new Fiesta RS model to join its growing performance range, if new photographs are to be believed.

Pictures snapped by automotive photographer Chris Doane show a mysterious black Fiesta being tested alongside the new Focus RS model, leading many to believe it could be a Fiesta RS prototype.

Details of course remain scant and Ford has confirmed nothing yet. In fact, the pictures contradict a statement made last week when Ford bosses said that a Fiesta RS was not in the pipeline.

RS range to expand with new models

Regardless, that could have been simple misdirection on Ford’s behalf, and they did note that the RS range is due to expand sooner rather than later, with the addition of a new slew of models.

Tyrone Johnson, senior vehicle engineer for Ford Performance, the division now managing all high-performance Ford cars, said: “The current Fiesta has another two- and-a-half years before it’s replaced.”

Speaking to publication Auto Express, Mr Johnson said: “We’ll update the ST within that period, and after that there could be something else.”

That “something else” is now widely believed to be the new RS version of the Fiesta, which would tie in with Ford’s aim to release 12 new models under the Ford Performance banner in the next five years.

He also mentioned that Ford’s new performance division will split its upcoming models into three sections, one for faster versions of existing models, one for special high performance cars and finally ultra-fast halo cars.

If the pictures turn out to be the new RS version of the Fiesta, the exterior of the car will draw obvious parallels with the Focus RS, with its large front intakes and wide wheel arches.

Obvious parallels with Focus RS

Being driven alongside its Focus stablemate could mean that the Fiesta RS is being tested for performance to see how well it keeps up with its bigger brother, while additional cooling components are visible behind the grille.

Interestingly, it’s possible that the Fiesta RS could also come with four-wheel drive like the Focus, while it’s likely it’ll be powered by an EcoBoost engine like the Mustang, Focus RS and the new GT.

Far from a stripped down track-only racer, Mr Johnson explained that it’ll also come with its fair share of creature comforts, saying: “It’s not hard to build a car that’s extreme in one direction; it’s getting the whole package right that matters.”

It’s unknown when a potential Fiesta RS could be unveiled, but it’s suggested that it could go on sale by 2017 and priced from approximately £23,000.