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Makeover for Ford Fiesta

Created on 15/11/2017 @ 10:52

Test Drive by Graham Breeze

It’s Britain’s best-selling car so it’s little wonder that it’s taken Ford nine long years to introduce the seventh generation of the amazing Fiesta.

It’s a risky business tinkering with any best seller so the suits at Ford had to think long and hard about giving the B-Segment’s dominant performer a makeover. And believe me, you won’t be disappointed.

There’s the usual broad range of options ranging from the luxurious Vingale, ST-Line, Titanium, Zetec and Style with Active set to arrive in 2018 – so just about something to suit every type of driver.

Active will arrive because Ford feels it has to be in the Crossover market and there’s also a 200 PS ST on the horizon to keep the boy racers amongst us happy.

I’ve been testing the ST-Line and Vignale on the demanding roads of North Wales and found myself yet again shocked at the performance of the ST’s 1.0itre engine which can produce, 52mpg, 0-62mph in nine seconds, a top speed of 125mph and CO2 emissions of just 102g/km – it never stops amazing me.

I’m not one hundred per cent sure that’s enough for the usual ST buyer but the model on test did everything that was asked of it on demanding Welsh roads and handled like a dream.

Ford bosses say The ST-Line range has been popular with customers who aspire to the sporty image of Ford’s ST models, but do not require the full performance delivered by optimised ST engines and chassis with sports technologies, time will tell.

ST-Line features sporty exterior styling including unique alloy wheel, grille, front and rear bumper and side-skirt designs. The interior features sports seats, alloy pedals and a flat-bottomed steering wheel, while the driving experience is enhanced with sports suspension.

The Fiesta Vignale offers unique 18-inch alloy wheel designs, exclusive exterior detailing and colours, and hexagonal-quilted, tuxedo-stitched leather seats. It’s an unusually luxurious option for a vehicle which will mainly be a city car option and you have to question who will go for this option.

There’s the usual wide range of specs and prices ranging from under £13,000 to over £21,000 (with extras) for the ST on test and although Ford claim it’s an “all-new” model it’s still instantly recognisable. You’ll love the choice of grilles for each model though which really do offer a distinctive option.

Ford boasts Fiesta is the most technologically advanced small car on sale in Europe and while one or two opponents may point you in a different direction you can’t help but be impressed by the stylish range of top-spec add-ons inside the cabin – a far cry from the basic Fiestas I used to drive as company vehicles so many years ago.

You could stake your pension on the new Fiesta continuing to be a UK best seller because it ticks so many boxes so be prepared to spot them on a road near you.

Five Fiesta Facts:

Special Screening: The heated leather steering wheel has been tested by Ford engineers to ensure it is resistant to damage or staining from sunscreen on the driver’s hands. 

Is this seat taken?  How does Ford know the Fiesta’s seats will remain comfortable for the lifetime of the car? Robot buttocks “sat” in the seats 25,000 times to prove their durability. 

Pressing engagement: Some of the all-new Fiesta’s body panels are made using a new manufacturing technology that analyses the noise frequencies produced during the stamping process, and can identify a component that will not meet Ford’s quality standards before it leaves the stamping machine. 

Grand slam: The all-new Fiesta’s doors now require 20 per cent less effort to close, because of improvements to the air extractors inside the car.

Playlist perfection: To develop the all-new Fiesta’s B&O PLAY Sound System, engineers spent a year listening to more than 5,000 tracks to ensure the premium 675-watt audio system sounds great whether enjoying Adele, Foo Fighters or Jay-Z – or chilling out to classical music – no matter how quietly or loudly you play it.  

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