Ford Puma ST Gold Edition 2022 long-term review

Ford Puma ST anyone? Move over Focus.

Somewhat paradoxically, it’s this overt and undeniably welcome emphasis on daily usability that most jars about the Puma ST’s overall conception: if you’re buying a car for the fun of driving, would you not buy something smaller, lower and less compromised? And if you need something frugal with a big boot, there are much quieter, softer and less luridly styled cars on the table, and some of them aren’t half bad to drive (the standard Puma, for one).

Yes, it’s a question that you could ask of any prospective hot hatch or super-saloon buyer, but it’s especially prevalent in this case, because the Fiesta ST is undeniably the better driver’s car yet barely diminished in terms of its functionality as a daily driver and, you could certainly argue, more likely to be taken seriously.

So is this a case of Ford being overly liberal with its deployment of the hallowed ST moniker? Can the Puma ST at once win us over on the grounds of its liveability while stacking up comfortably against its universally acclaimed range-mates in terms of performance?

First impressions leave little to be desired in terms of real-world dynamism (although I’m not yet sold on the slightly snappy steering and firm ride), or in outright punch, but I know just how quickly an overenthusiastic chassis and energetic motor can grate over the course of a few months’ daily drudgery.

A heavily varied few thousand miles beckon for Gold Edition number 4 of 999 over the coming months. I’m looking forward to seeing if I will come to the end of them pining for the refinement of something more subdued.

Second Opinion

  • More than 275,000 votes were cast on social media to help create this model, but with just 350 examples destined for the UK, only a few Ford fans will ever see one. At least it’s hard to miss. The stripes and ST badge can be like a red rag to a bull among easily triggered drivers when overtaking on motorways.

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Scott Baber
Scott Baber
Senior Managing editor

Manages incoming enquiries and advertising. Based in London and very sporty. Worked news and sports desks in local paper after graduating.


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