Future vs. Past: Is a Tesla Model 3 Faster Than a Ford Fiesta ST? Gameshow Ep. 13 [Video]

How far ahead of good old internal combustion has the electric car gotten?

It’s old school versus new school on the track in this video. TFL’s venerable hot hatch – the turbocharged, front-wheel drive Ford Fiesta ST – takes on a new sort of challenger. Instead of facing another champion of internal combustion, we have an electric car. More specifically, we have the Tesla Model 3 on the track to answer that age-old question: Is it faster than a Ford Fiesta…ST?

2017 Ford Fiesta ST vs Tesla Model 3
Our Ford Fiesta ST, at sea level, hits 60 mph in about 7 seconds. [Photo: TFLcar]
In the returning corner, there’s our long-term hot hatch. The 2017 Ford Fiesta ST packs a 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with 197 horsepower and 202 lb-ft of torque. All that frenetic power is sent to the front wheels through a six-speed manual transmission. As for the challenger, the Tesla Model 3 packs a single, rear-mounted electric motor – this is not the Dual Motor Performance version – sending power to the rear wheels. The rear-wheel drive Model 3 packs 271 horsepower and 307 lb-ft of torque, hooked to a 75-kWh capacity battery.

Tesla Model 3 vs Ford Fiesta ST
The Tesla Model 3 accelerates from 0-60 in approximately 5.1 seconds. [Photo: Tesla]
On paper, it appears the Tesla Model 3 has the power to walk all over Ford’s tiny hot hatch. But here’s the rub: The Model 3, as equipped, weighs over 3,800 pounds. That’s over half a ton more than the Fiesta ST. It also costs $55,000 as Scott, the Model 3’s owner, equipped it. That’s three times more expensive than the Fiesta ST.

Still, perhaps the Fiesta ST can pull out a win in the drag race and a hot lap around the track? Check out the video above to find out! Subscribe to The Fast Lane Car for more news, views and real-world reviews.

If you’re looking for some more sound to go with your gameshow experience, check out our last episode where the Fiesta (or not) takes on the Volkswagen Golf R!