The new Ford Fiesta ST that recently launched in Europe is offered with an optional launch control system, despite the fact that the hot hatch comes in manual guise only (for now, at least). And the folks over at Carfection have released a short video in which they put the system to the test.

Ford says the launch control system was “developed for use on track only”, adding that it enables Fiesta ST drivers to achieve “maximum satisfaction with consistently fast standing starts”.

The driver simply selects “Launch Control” using the steering wheel controls, activating a dedicated graphical display in the 4,2-inch instrument cluster. Holding the throttle fully open instructs the system to build and hold engine revolutions, filling an on-screen gauge that indicates when the car is prepared for launch.

Releasing the clutch fully then enables what Ford calls “an optimised standing start”, with electronic stability control, traction control, torque vectoring control and torque steer compensation systems managing power and torque delivery.

For the record, the Fiesta ST’s 1,5-litre turbo-triple produces 147 kW and 290 N.m, with the hot hatch featuring selectable drive modes. It will complete the obligatory dash from standstill to 100 km/h in a claimed 6,5 seconds (and top out at 232 km/h), making it four-tenths quicker than the outgoing 1,6-litre model.

Watch Carfection's Henry Catchpole test out the system in the video below...