Ford Fiesta ST is full of thrills

As Subaru will only offer the WRX and STI in sedan formats, the 2014 Ford Fiesta ST may well be the hottest hatchback in the land. In ST form, the little Fiesta subcompact gets 197 horsepower, a suspension affording easy apex rotation, and brakes that shave off just the right amount of speed. Down a twisty track, I reveled in the perfectly responsive steering.

The only thing I found to complain about with the Fiesta ST is that the car just isn't outrageous enough. The array of bright colors (green envy, race red, and molten orange) don't quite … Read more

Ford 'not married' to Microsoft for next-gen Sync, but BlackBerry isn't necessarily in

BARCELONA, Spain -- There's been no shortage of talk and speculation of late surrounding Ford's relationship with Microsoft.

Microsoft has, since the beginning of Sync, provided the software underpinnings that make the infotainment system work. With millions of Sync-equipped vehicles on the road, it's big business, and with rumors of a switch to QNX making the rounds, that's potentially bad news for Microsoft.

However, Ford is saying not so fast. Here in Barcelona at Mobile World Congress we spoke with Ford managing director Pin van der Jagt about the situation. He said that Ford is always … Read more

Ford AppLink system helps you find a space with Parkopedia

BARCELONA, Spain -- Ford's smartening up its new cars with an app that helps you find a parking space. Parkopedia lets you search among 15 million spaces across Europe, showing which car parks have free spaces and listing how much they cost.

It covers 3,000 towns and cities in 20 countries across the continent.

The carmaker's AppLink system, which is available in its new EcoSport SUV and the newly announced 2015 Focus, is voice-activated and already has apps from Spotify, Tom Tom, Radioplayer, and others.

Another new addition is Aupeo, a music discovery service with … Read more

BlackBerry said to be replacing Microsoft in Ford's new cars

Ford has partnered with Microsoft for its Sync in-car infotainment system for years, but it's looking like the car giant may be switching to BlackBerry.

The automaker is swapping out Microsoft for BlackBerry for its next-generation in-car entertainment and communications technology, according to a Bloomberg report citing anonymous sources. Apparently, the car maker believes BlackBerry's system could be cheaper and more reliable.

Ford partnered with Microsoft in 2007 to create a fully integrated, flash memory-based system to enable drivers to call hands-free and to control a range of digital audio via voice commands and buttons mounted on the … Read more

10 must-see videos of the week

As the Sochi Winter Olympics officially kick off this week, we're checking out some of the same technology Olympic organizers are relying on to generate snow at a resort in Lake Tahoe. These automated snowmaking systems (some of which can even be operated from a mobile phone) are making it easier and more efficient to make snow when Mother Nature doesn't want to cooperate.

Prizefight is also back at it with an epic rematch between the Roku 3 and third-generation Apple TV. It's been a year since their previous duel and both Editors' Choice streaming boxes have … Read more

The Ford Fiesta ST: It's ok to believe the hype

In the UK, Ford is known on part for its great cars, but also for its ability to add serious performance to them and create legendary motors. Chaps of a certain age will tell you about how the Lotus Cortina was "the" car to have back in the day. Come a little further forward and you won't hear many bad words said about any Ford with a Cosworth badge on its arse.

More recently, fast Fords have been stamped with "ST." "ST" means more power, angrier styling, better handling and a big honeycombe … Read more

Ford enlists Stanford, MIT for driverless car research

Behind the wheel, your brain does a lot of processing you take for granted, such as calculating the paths and speeds of nearby vehicles so you can successfully make a lane merge. Ford is turning to Stanford and MIT researchers to come up with computer algorithms to mimic that processing of environmental data.

Last month, Ford showed off the Fusion Hybrid autonomous car research vehicle, fitted with four lidar sensors, it was using to develop future driverless systems. The company will implement new algorithms developed at the universities to test these driving behaviors in the cars.

MIT gets to take … Read more

Mark Hamill unearths 'Star Wars' memories on Reddit

Iconic "Star Wars" actor Mark Hamill fielded questions on Reddit on Wednesday, revealing bits about his role as Luke Skywalker and whether he will appear in the next "Star Wars" film directed by J.J. Abrams.

Below are highlights culled from his Ask Me Anything interview.

On whether Hamill expected "Star Wars" to be such a critical success:

"I didn't expect it to be a critical success. I thought people would like it, because it took so many elements from movies we were familiar with -- pirate, cowboy movies, war movies -- … Read more

Leia, Han, and Luke to hit new 'Star Wars' set this spring

It's unclear if they'll be arriving onboard the Millennium Falcon, but Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Mark Hamill will be hitting the set of "Star Wars Episode VII" this spring.

According to TV Guide, Fisher said that she, along with Ford and Hamill, will be arriving on set to reprise their roles as Princess Leia, Han Solo, and Luke Skywalker, respectively, in March or April.

But in a Reddit Ask Me Anything today, Hamill would not confirm his involvement in the film.

Will they look the same on-screen when the film opens in December 2015 as … Read more

Top 11 videos from the Detroit auto show

The Detroit auto show, officially known as the North American International Auto Show, is the first car show of the year. Held each January in the home of US car culture, it brings shiny new models, new car technology, and loads of automotive eye candy. CNET's Car Tech team was hard at week in Detroit over the last three days to cover the show and we're happy to show you the video highlights below.

1. 2015 Ford F-150 An all-aluminum body frame, a fuel-efficient engine, and some new body styling cues are highlights of the 2015 Ford F-150. … Read more