The initial report, sourced by an interview of Jost Captio of Ford's Team RS in the UK's evo Magazine, indicates that the Blue Oval is canning the car before it's even been built. The reasons are of the typical mundane: it's expensive, times are tough, and there's no business case for it.
But fans of fast and flickable front-drivers are not concerned with such frippery as profit and 'corporate responsibility'. They want their hot hatches, and we're inclined to agree with them.
Fortunately, there's no official confirmation of the talk yet, so there's still a flicker of hope that the little car will just be delayed, not killed off entirely. If it is built, expect to see it sometime after 2010, sporting something in the neighborhood of 200hp (149kW) from a 2.0L turbo four.
And even if the Fiesta RS is canceled, there's still the factory-performance Mountune version and the Fiesta Zetec S 'performance' hatch it's based on as well, so all is not lost. The standard Fiesta is headed to the U.S., with the first samples already in port, and it could even bring with it the Zetec S variant, so lament not too bitterly, American hatch lovers. There is hope for you yet as well.