The Ingot Silver paint, I like. The Sport Package/Zetec-S/ST-Line lip kit, I like. The facelift styling (aside from the fuel door not lining up with the tail light any more), I like. The standard hatchback spoiler…I never have and never will like.
The teensy little spoiler that Ford fits to all standard hatchbacks (non Black Pack/ST/RS models) is a piece that usually doesn’t last long on cars that find themselves as projects. As such, with Arabis it was always a matter of when and not if it would be replaced. In fact, months before even buying the car I secured an OEM ST piece (thanks Kijiji) and set it aside for the eventual arrival of a new hatchback.
However – as you may recall from the OEM Mk3 spoiler guide that was published a couple of months ago – I also managed to stumble across a factory Black Pack spoiler which then gave me the option of fitting it instead to fully replicate the look of an overseas Zetec-S/ST-Line model.
I went back and forth for a little while as I tried to decide between the two pieces, but in the end I went back to my original plan of the ST spoiler and so loaded it (and a few other small parts) into the hatch for delivery to Speedy.
As a quick side note, Speedy doesn’t officially sponsor our cars (though they do give us great pricing when something comes in) but the shop does seem to have become a bit of a second home for us in the last couple of years. Great work, great pricing, great people, and they’ve helped us out a ton with the various projects so we always try to give them a shout-out whenever we can. Support those who support you!
But anyway, on to the parts: I will get a bit more into why I chose the ST spoiler over the Black Pack (BP) version a bit later on. For now, let’s look at the new goodies! You can see here (propped up on a pair of boxes that are not for Arabis, don’t get excited) the freshly painted spoiler, roof trim, and washer nozzles.
The little box in the middle of it all held a new third brake light, since the original wouldn’t quite work with the new spoiler. The light itself could be reused but the washer nozzle would have to be switched out first; however, I decided to take the opportunity to fit the clear third brake light to not only match the spoiler but also make one more change to the exterior of the car.
As for the washer nozzles and roof trim, colour-coding these is something I did with Mustard’s pieces several years ago and they’ve always been a fantastic, but subtle, update to the exterior of the car in my opinion. I’m genuinely surprised we don’t see more Mk3s with these pieces done in body colour as they really do tidy up the exterior and the parts themselves can be acquired for next to nothing these days thanks to Mk3s popping up more in junkyards.
Also nice is the fact that the nozzles and roof trim simply clip into place, so the installs are super simple. Speaking of the clips, those in the trim pieces attach to these fixture points running along the channels on the roof. If you find yourself needing to refit the clips to your roof trim (mine were left in during painting) you’ll have to line them up with these metal hoops, but that’s not difficult.
Now as for the installs of all of these parts, since we’ve covered each of these modifications on the blog previously I switched to video format for this round and posted it on the YouTube channel on Friday. You can check that out above to see the actual procedures for each of these pieces; below are the finished photos!
Roof trim clipped into place, the car immediately looks just that little bit more – dare I say it – upscale?
The washer nozzles are significantly more subtle than the other changes, but if parts are already going in for paint, why not?
The significant change (improvement) was of course the ST spoiler, which really helps the overall look of these cars. It’s much more pronounced but not anything overly crazy.
I had said above that I would get more into why I chose to fit the ST piece instead of the BP, and this angle shows one of the details that helped my decision. It was very tempting to fit the BP spoiler for the reasons that it would be something different than the default fit-an-ST-spoiler-to-all-hatches approach and it would also pair with the factory lip kit to fully replicate the look of those aforementioned overseas Zetec-S and ST-Line cars. However, the ST spoiler is just that little bit more aggressive and when viewed from behind the more angular styling matches almost perfectly with the Sport Package rear valance, whereas the BP spoiler is much more rounded-off. If you ask me, this is the wing that should have come as standard with this lip kit because it matches so well.
And yes (as also shown at the end of the video), Arabis finally received one of our 3D-printed SE emblems as the finishing touch for now. I couldn’t exactly be driving an SE and not have one of these on the back of it, now could I? The original emblems were starting to show some age anyway so they would have been pulled off regardless.
With that, the exterior of the car is now generally where I want it to be. With the full lip kit (I was lucky that I found a car optioned with it), the ST spoiler, colour-coded pieces, and a couple of other touches, there’s not really anything that stands out to me now as needing attention. I might experiment with a couple of final, small tweaks but that’s for another day. For now, I’m very pleased with how the little silver hatch looks and should really be turning my attention back to the other projects. It’s finally time for them to come out of hiding!