Fresh out of college in 2006, I found my dream car; an Egg-Yolk Yellow 2001 Ford Focus ZX3 with the 5-spd manual. It had 47k miles on the clock. This was the car I’d had on my wall for the past couple years. I loved that car and spent just about every free penny I had for the next 4 years packing it full of specialty parts from its European cousins. But come October 2010, it was approaching 200k miles and I was spending more on its upkeep than making it better. It was no secret at that point I’d been following news of the new Fiesta models in Europe and how they would eventually be making their way to the Americas; especially when it was announced that the States would be getting the hatchback model in addition to the sedan. I’d even stopped to take a look at the car when they first hit dealer lots. The wife, Lorna, and I, however, weren’t really in the market for a new car, so I figured the Focus would have to last me a few more years and then I’d find a replacement for it. That was, until, one day on the way past our local Ford dealer in Central PA. As I said, I’d stopped to look at the cars a few times, but the dealer we passed happened to have a Fiesta hatchback in Yellow Blaze parked right up by the entrance. I commented that I hadn’t seen that color in person before and Lorna said we should stop. I took it as an off-handed comment and kept driving, and a little bit farther down the road she says again “No really, I want to see it too. Let’s stop.” I’m sure I gave her the most dumbfounded look in the world at the point. But I made one of the quickest u-turns in my life and drove back to the dealer. We stopped. We ogled it. We talked to a sales rep. Opened it up, test drove it and both loved it. It was a 5-spd hatchback and had the SES trim package with every option but the moon-roof. We spent a couple hours at the dealer discussing what kind of financing we could get, how our credit score helped us out and what kind of payments we should expect. We thanked them immensely, took a few pictures and went home. I’d hate to say that a brand new automobile became an impulse buy – but I’d be lying if I didn’t. We went back 2 days later to finalize the paperwork and made that little Fiesta the first car we’d purchased together as a couple. The Focus is still around, sold to a very good friend of mine who loves it just as much as I did, and is well over 200k miles now. The Fiesta, however, is my new project, and 2 years in, I have never regretted my decision. Thank you, Ford, for a great product!