The Ford Focus ST was the best-selling hot hatch in Europe in the last three months of 2012, according to figures from automotive data intelligence provider Polk.

The Focus ST accounted for 44 percent of all sales during this period — ahead of VW Golf GTI with 33 percent and Renault Megane Sport with 12 percent.

Total Focus ST sales in this period were 1984, making it top-selling hot hatch in the UK as well as Denmark, Norway, Finland, Hungary, Switzerland, Sweden and the Netherlands.

“The unrivalled balance of performance and usability has been recognised by some fantastic reviews for the Focus ST,” said Roelant de Waard, vice president, Marketing, Sales & Service, Ford of Europe. “You really have to drive it yourself to experience the responsiveness of the engine and the fantastic chassis. I am one of a fast-growing group of excited ST drivers.”

The Focus ST uses a 2.0-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder to create 184kW and 360Nm