A sensational all-rounder, the Fiesta offers a lot for its £15,195 price tag, writes car reviewer Tim Barnes-Clay.
The Fiesta has been made by the Ford Motor Company since 1976 and its name is known all over the world.
That’s hardly surprising because the 38-year-old model has been manufactured in Europe, the USA, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela, China, India, Taiwan, Thailand, and South Africa.
It’s come a long way from its familiar, original boxy shape.
The latest car has established itself as a best-seller in Britain and around the globe after setting a new quality benchmark with a dynamic exterior and an interior optimised for comfort.
The Fiesta, on test here in Zetec three-door form, has lots of room inside.
Without rear doors it makes the fitting of child seats a pain, but once fixed securely, there’s more than enough space for the kids.
Indeed, if you don’t have a brood, two adult passengers will find they’re not as cramped as in some rival superminis.
UK’s top-selling motor
The Ford has a reasonable boot as well, with enough capacity for the weekly shop.
However, you’d struggle to cram a pushchair in on top if you needed to take your ankle-biters to the supermarket.
But the talents of the well-liked hatchback outweigh any gripes.
The Fiesta continues building on its position as the UK’s top-selling motor with the launch of a fresh powertrain, which was fitted to my test car.
Ford now offers a 99bhp version of its 1.0 litre EcoBoost engine with the company’s six speed PowerShift automatic transmission – delivering CO2 emissions of just 114g/km and 57.7mpg (on average) fuel consumption.
The engine is a smart piece of machinery.
It combines cutting-edge equipment, including direct fuel injection and turbo-charging, to deliver the might of a larger lump with the fuel efficiency of a smaller unit.
The Ford PowerShift transmission uses electronically controlled twin-clutch technology to move between gears.
You have the option of staying in full automatic mode or, for a bit more excitement, dropping into the gearbox’s “sport” setting.
Indeed, the combination of EcoBoost and PowerShift is one of the most advanced and dynamic powertrains ever launched in a compact car.
The 0-62mph performance feels far quicker than the 11.2 seconds stated on paper. The steering is sporty, snappy and sharp too.
Stock features on all Fiestas include Easy Fuel, which prevents filling up with the wrong type of juice.
A pleasure to drive
Meanwhile, MyKey enables parents to limit speed, audio volume and other settings before loaning the car to young drivers.
And daytime running lights to be seen in all conditions.
There are very few pocket rocket hatchbacks that you can buy that are as pleasurable to drive as the Fiesta.
It feels on the ball, which is clearly brilliant news on a winding rural road.
A sensational all-rounder
But the car is also a delight on the humdrum trips, thanks to its well weighted controls, relaxed ride and first-rate visibility.
The Fiesta is a sensational all-rounder, achieved thanks to its styling, handling and technology.
All this makes for genuinely gratifying and stress-free motoring.
Chuck in a long list of standard safety kit into the mix, plus its spirited yet efficient petrol engine, and the Fiesta Ecoboost Powershift really does offer a lot for its £15,195 price tag.
Pros & cons
- Comfort √
- Performance √
- Efficiency √
- Styling √
- Average boot X
- Max speed: 112 mph
- 0-62 mph: 11.2 secs
- Combined mpg: 57.7
- Engine: 999 cc 12 valve 3 cylinder turbo petrol
- Max. power (bhp): 99 at 6000 rpm
- Max. torque (lb/ft): 125 at 4100 rpm
- CO2: 114 g/km
- Price: £15,195 on the road
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