Ford has won several awards for its three-cylinder EcoBoost engine, but what happens if you take off the turbo? Well, for a start the price falls, so you can now get this Ford Fiesta 1.0 from just £12,895 (in three-door guise). Yet there is quite a big drop in performance, too.
In naturally aspirated form, this engine produces 79bhp and 105Nm of torque. The 0-62mph dash isn’t a dash at all, taking 14.9 seconds, and you need to work the five-speed gearbox hard to keep up with other traffic.
Push too hard and the engine is a bit noisy in second and third gear, but once up to speed, it settles into a nicely refined cruise. Fortunately, this Fiesta drives just as well as any other. All the controls are perfectly weighted, the steering is accurate and the chassis is agile and composed, but you need to push the throttle a little harder than before.
In real world driving, this 1.0-litre is also likely to return better fuel economy than the EcoBoost – even though both claim an identical 65.7mpg figure and emit 99g/km of CO2. That makes it much cleaner than the 1.25-litre model which props up the range.
Zetec trim is not exactly brimming with kit - especially compared with the Peugeot 208 - but all the basics are covered, and build quality is rock solid. This welcome addition to the range cements the Fiesta as our supermini of choice, offering a fine blend of fun, efficiency and affordability.
All Fiestas can carry a decent 276 litres of luggage with the seats up, and this five-door is surprisingly spacious inside. But this particular version would feel pretty slow with four passengers.