The Ford Fiesta R5 had its first public outing last weekend as Matthew Wilson and Chris Patterson took to the wheel of M-Sport’s latest challenger. Continuing the Fiesta R5’s thorough testing and development programme, the pairing ran as Course Car for the 2013 edition of the Malcolm Wilson Rally in Cumbria.
The car felt really good.
M-Sport will continue to develop the Fiesta R5 before its launch later this year. With some substantial gravel testing already under its belt, the next phase will see the car put through its paces on asphalt both in the UK and abroad.
Also competing last weekend, M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, had the privilege of debuting the Ford Fiesta S2400. Designed for non-homologated series, the engine is ideal for the Ford Fiesta S2000 – Wilson Snr competing in the chassis that won the Monte-Carlo Rally on its debut in 2010 – but can also be adapted for other models such as MkI and MkII Escorts.
Unfortunately however, Wilson was forced to make an untimely retirement on SS3 and M-Sport’s R&D team will continue development and testing before an official release to customers later this year.
Elsewhere in the Cumbrian event, South African Mark Cronje piloted M-Sport's Ford Fiesta RS WRC to a creditable fifth place overall.
“The car felt really good. Development is coming along nicely and the [Ford Fiesta] R5 looks set to be another extremely competitive model.
“Over the last few months we have done a lot of initial testing on gravel, now we just need to ensure that the car works just as well on asphalt. I’m heading down to Wales for a preliminary Tarmac test this week, and then the plan is to head to mainland Europe where we can perfect the car before an official launch later this year.”
Malcolm Wilson said:
“M-Sport is an exciting place to be at the moment with lots of new projects on the way. Early development for both the [Ford] Fiesta R5 and S2400 has been promising and it looks as though both models will be well worth the wait when they are officially released later this year.
“Now it’s all about continuing with the development on both cars to ensure that we provide a package that matches up to our high standards and is capable of securing overall victories around the world.”