Been reading the forums for a few weeks now and decided to register to make a post about this. I own a Mazda 2 and will be buying a fiesta ST very soon. At the time, I was looking at the SE fiesta (not the ST, there's no comparison) as we needed some kind if economy vehicle for getting around.
We picked up the Mazda over the fiesta for many reasons:
*Much more interior space (passengers can ride comfortably in the back seat).
*Bigger trunk (my wife hauls a lot of $hit)
*Better gas mileage
*better price (nearly $3300 cheaper than the fiesta I wanted)
*better warranty and more included maintenance with the purchase
Both cars were very fun to drive! I'd say the fiesta was definitely more powerful but my wife doesn't care about that. She didn't like my "spirited"test drives either. I was amazed by the handling of the very light chassis and the torque of the tiny 1.5 motor in the Mazda. It reminded me a lot of a miata only with more room and FWD.
As for the fiesta ST, I currently own a focus ST and I'm considering trading for the fiesta simply because I like the smaller car. The focus is a boat compared to the fiesta. I absolutely love the car but for getting around in the city, its too much. Terrible turning radius, horrible blind spots, difficult to park... I never considered these challenges when I got the focus and regretting it now.
I'm expecting the fiesta ST to get worse mileage than the Mazda and I doubt ill be hauling passengers in it so the interior space doesn't bother me. It's going to be advantageous owning both cars though!
Just one question....you say the focus has horrible blind spots? I have a '14 Focus SE and have no problem with blind spots. In fact just this morning driving to work (at -10 deg F) I made special note of the good vision of all the crazy's around me. My only complaint is the driver's side wide angle mirror. It is a distraction. I catch myself looking twice, which takes my eyes off the road too long...
If you've driven the subcompacts like the M-2 it may feel big. I have a GTI and the Focus feels more substantial than the GTI but is fun to drive. The ST comes in any day now and then i have to give the Focus back to my wife....