Ford's new flagship Fiesta

Compact and comprehensively kitted

21 August 2018 | Motors
SEAN PARKER

It’s all about incremental changes. That’s evident with the new Ford Fiesta: the design is markedly different but it still possesses Fiesta DNA.

The headlights have been pulled back further and there’s a new, wider grille. The new model is longer with a 71mm increase in length. Ford says there’s 16mm more legroom for rear passengers.

Stands out in the crowd

The world’s eighth most valuable car company hasn’t changed the formula much. It’s still front-wheel drive, powered by a small-capacity engine, but there is the addition of a six-speed automatic gearbox to replace the dual-clutch 'box.

But it has added a chunk of good standard kit and also worked on improving the noise, vibration and harshness levels (more on that later).

Our top-of-the-range test unit was dipped in a new hue called Blue Wave, and it certainly caused motorists a double take.

What’s it like under the skin?

Ford’s EcoBoost engine might be synonymous with the Kuga fire saga, but this 998cc engine shouldn’t be painted with the same brush. The three-cylinder, in-line turbocharged petrol unit produces 74 kW and 170 Nm on paper.

The automaker says the torsional stiffness has increased by 15% and the front anti-roll bar is now lighter and stiffer according to Ford.

The Fiesta’s chassis now offers 10% more cornering grip, while braking distances at 100 km/h are reduced by more than 8% according to the carmaker.

But do all these incremental changes translate into a car that handles better? Yes. I chucked the new Fiesta around bends and it held on, showing very little understeer (only at the limit) and no tyre squeal.

The steering is quick and fortunately has some delicious feel. I found myself searching for twisty roads to get a better taste of the handling.

City driving

This model is let down by the six-speed automatic transmission; it stutters and at some points doesn’t change cogs soon enough. It’s frustrating.

There are paddle-shifts fitted that can also be used to change gears but it just doesn’t fit the mood of the car.

The engine is gutsy but does suffer from considerable lag before spooling rapidly to give you the feeling of pulling an elastic band when pulling away.

The ride quality is commendable, soaking up the bumps and ruts when needed, there's also very little intrusion of road noise which speaks volumes of the noise, vibration and harshness levels.

It's certainly needed to grow up as many people scale down from bigger vehicles to more fuel-efficient vehicles that are easy to park despite offering slightly less space.

Inside

The interior is a good place to be. Supportive seats and fewer buttons mean you’re well catered for in terms of comfort and convenience. The seat warmers came in handy on chilly mornings.

A 20cm touchscreen houses the infotainment system and it's clear and easy to work. Ford's latest Sync system is standard on Titanium models and provides navigation and voice command. The Fiesta is fitted with Bluetooth connectivity and two USB ports across the range.

A high-end seven-speaker sound system is featured on the Titanium model.

The quality of the plastic lacked the quality feel of the asking price (in the range of N$310 600) but I could be nitpicking. Because I enjoy driving so much, the steering wheel deserves praise for the quality and feel of it. Good job, Ford.

Buyers will find the excellent standard specification a massive boon in the high-spec Titanium model.

Summary

Peace of mind comes in the form of a four-year or 60 000km service plan and front, side and curtain airbags are standard fitment across the range.

There's a list the length of your arm with acronyms for driving aids, including ABS brakes with electronic brake assist (EBA) and electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD). A nifty feature that assists pulling away on an incline is hill launch assist (HLA) and electronic stability and Traction Control (ESC).

The Fiesta's main rival is of course the ubiquitous Volkswagen Polo, which we would have liked to driven back to back but unfortunately couldn't due to logistics.

Having said that, the new model still feels as fun to drive as its predecessor and offers some very cool kit as standard. But most importantly, it's still helluva fun to drive. – Wheels 24

Soortgelyk

 

Hepatitis E woed landswyd voort

13 ure gelede | Ministeries

Henriette Lamprecht – Kort duskant ‘n jaar ná ‘n uitbreking van hepatitis E amptelik in Desember 2017 in Windhoek verklaar is, is byna 4...

Nuwe plan teen misdaad onthul

13 ure gelede | Misdaad

Denver KistingRooftogte, veral gewapende rooftogte, het in die afgelope ses jaar met 44% die hoogte in geskiet.Dié syfer is vervat in misdaadstatistieke van die afgelope...

Hittegolf rý Namibië

13 ure gelede | Weer

Ondangwa is vandag die heel warmste plek met ‘n verwagte maksimum temperatuur van 41°C. Boonop word geen verligting van snikhete temperature hierdie naweek verwag nie....

SOE’s: Direksies moet vir mislukkings pa staan

13 ure gelede | Ministeries

Ronelle Rademeyer - Voor staatsondernemings (SOE’s) nie prestasiegedrewe volgens goeie korporatiewe beginsels bestuur word nie, sal die ekonomie nie beter vaar nie.Daarom sal die vergoeding...

Weer, Vrydag 16 November 2018

13 ure gelede | Weer

BINNELAND: Sonnig en bloedig warm in die Suide. Elders sal dit gedeeltelik bewolk en bloedig wees. Enkele donerbuie word in Otjozondjupa, Khomas en Omaheke verwag.KUS:...

Kalender 16 November

13 ure gelede | Kuns en vermaak

Nou aan die gang» Die Nasionale Kunsgalery van Namibië (NAGN) bied met trots die 2018 Unam Visuele Kunste-uitstalling aan, wat tans in die hoofgalery van...

Die misterie van poësie

13 ure gelede | Kuns en vermaak

Lloyd Zandberg Terwyl die meerderheid van die mensdom soggens teen die wekker stoei, kinders vir skool aantrek, die hewige verkeer aandurf en uiteindelik laat vir...

Ons is nie teen gays, sê Sioka

13 ure gelede | Ministeries

Denver Kisting – Die minister van geslagsgelykheid en kinderwelsyn, me. Doreen Sioka, sê die regering het niks teen gay mense nie.Sý veral diskrimineer nie teen...

Mense oor miltsiekte gewaarsku ná 2 uitbrekings

13 ure gelede | Gesondheid

Ronelle Rademeyer - ’n Bewegingsverbod vir diere is by Sesfontein en die Bwabwata Nasionale Park ingestel nadat uitbrekings van miltsiekte op 1 November in dié...