Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Our Fleet Test Drive: Ford Fiesta - 1st Report
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Our Fleet Test Drive: Ford Fiesta - 1st Report

Date: 13 February 2009   |   Author: Tom Webster

[3] Auto-folding mirrors
Category: Supermini
P11D price: £12,744
Key rival: Vauxhall Corsa

I've joined the current trend for downsizing by swapping my previous long-termer, the Ford Focus-sized Hyundai i30, for the Blue Oval's latest Fiesta supermini.

But coming down a category in size has not left me bereft of space. The Fiesta will easily accommodate four reasonably sized adults, and boasts a boot that swells to 979 litres with the seats dropped down. Even with the seats up it measures 295 litres [1] - larger than its Corsa, Ibiza and Mazda 2 rivals.

However, the biggest problem with convincing your drivers to take a step down might not be a reduction of interior space. Life in a bigger hatchback could have acclimatised them to toys and luxuries not normally seen in smaller vehicles.

This is why we've gone for the top-level Titanium spec, which brings aircon, cruise control [2], iPod connection, auto-folding mirrors [3] and Ford's fantastic heated windscreen system, Quickclear. This last addition has already proved its worth, saving BusinessCar drivers the time and pain of numbed fingers caused by scraping icy windows.

To finish off the spec for the business user, we added a couple of options. ESP anti-skid control and Bluetooth were necessities for fulfilling duty of care obligations, and the front and rear parking sensors could easily save the £350 they cost in prevented repair bills. The prices added up at buying time, but the savings should make themselves known over the life of the car and when we come to bid farewell.

If you are going all out on specification for downsizers, then it makes sense to head towards the top of the engine list as well. The 120PS 1.6-litre engine we selected is a fantastically zippy little motor that we are looking forward to getting beyond the running-in period. When it's properly settled in, it should be able to make good its claims of a combined fuel consumption of 47.9mpg. Because of the Fiesta's diminutive dimensions, acceleration from 0-62mph is claimed to take just 9.9secs, and it keeps going to 120mph.

We'll be finding out over the next few months just how capable this makes the supermini around town and on longer journeys for the driver used to a bigger car in every sense.

Ford Fiesta 1.6i Titanium 5dr
Claimed combined consumption47.9mpg
Our average consumption 30.8mpg
P11D price£12,744
Model price range£8514-£12,744
C02 (tax) 132g/km (15%)
BIK?20/40% per month £32/£64
Service interval12,500mls
Insurancegroup 6
Boot space (min/max)295/975litres
Engine size/power1596cc/120PS
Top speed/0-62mph120mph/9.9secs
Why we’re running itCan downsizing be
done without the
PositiveLooks, lots of toys,
driving enjoyment
NegativeNoisy on motorway