With little fanfare, the hotly anticipated Ford Fiesta was unveiled at the L.A. Auto Show this week. Sporting good looks, an upscale interior, an affordable price and gas-sipping fuel economy, the Fiesta isn’t going to set any land speed records. But Ford is a crafty company, and they’ve already taken several different Fiestas to performance extremes from Pikes Peak to the X-Games, and soon the World Rally Championship.

To whet our appetite, Autoweek is reporting that Ford will even cram one of its EcoBoost engines into the Fiesta, just not when it launches early next year.

Picture: Ford

The EcoBoost engine so far comes in just one variety, the 3.5 liter V6 that provides 355 horsepower and 355 ft-lbs of torque in cars like the Taurus SHO. But Ford is also working on smaller versions of the EcoBoost engine, including a 1.6 liter four cylinder variant. This twin turbo motor cranks 180 horsepower and 170 ft-lbs of torque effortlessly, and will give the Fiesta’s otherwise bland powertrain a big bump.

Stock, the Fiesta has a 1.6 liter engine delivering just 119 horsepower without the aid of turbochargers. In a car as little as the Fiesta though, that extra 60 horsepower will go a long way towards improving its performance image. Add all-wheel drive and a few more ponies and you have a true competitor for the sport compact market, a place domestic companies have typically fared poorly.

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