Ford Fiesta review
The Fiesta is good fun and remains a solid buy, despite increasingly strong competition.
The Ford Fiesta is a British motoring icon, and the latest model picks up where the old model left off at the top of the UK sales charts. It's one of the best 'real-world' cars around, because it ticks all of the rational boxes, but also manages to be great fun to drive.
The Fiesta offers great value for money, and not just because it’s cheap to buy. It’s comfortable, refined, practical and comes with plenty of standard kit, while the agile handling means it can easily put a smile on your face on the most mundane of journeys. With improvements made to cabin quality, infotainment and space, the Ford Fiesta is the best it’s ever been.
The Ford Fiesta is the best selling car in Britain. The latest generation was launched in 2017 and in many ways it was the arrival of this Fiesta which probably spurred the supermini market into action; the last one was so good, how could Ford go wrong with the follow-up? As a result, brand-new versions of the SEAT Ibiza, Volkswagen Polo, Citroen C3, Kia Rio and Suzuki Swift arrived, updates were made to the Hyundai i20, Mazda 2 and Renault Clio, while big incentives were placed on models like the Vauxhall Corsa, Skoda Fabia and Peugeot 208 to help them stay attractive to buyers. It all means that buyers looking for a supermini have never had so much choice.
That's especially true of the Fiesta range itself. Ford has realigned the Fiesta model line-up to ensure there’s something to suit everyone. There’s eleven models on offer, from the entry-level Trend through to the sportier ST-Line versions, and the hardcore ST to consider for those possibly thinking of the odd track day experience.
There is, though, the inevitable downside, with prices now starting at just over £16,600 it’s not as affordable as it once was. And, if you want to specify additional luxury kit you’ll certainly pay for it: the ST-Line X is over £22,000, while Ford wants £27,000 for the racy ST Edition.
Unlike some rivals that now only come with a five-door body, the Fiesta is still offered with three or five doors on certain models, for a premium of around £400. In terms of engines, there are three petrols available. The 1.1 Ti-VCT is the base engine, and delivers 74bhp. The 1.0 EcoBoost three-cylinder turbo petrol is the staple of the range, and it comes in 94bhp, 123bhp and 153bhp variants. The 123bhp version is also offered with mild-hybrid tech, while the 153bhp engine is available solely in mild-hybrid form.
The sporty ST-2, ST-3 and Performance Edition use a punchy 1.5T EcoBoost engine with 197bhp. The frugal 1.5 TDCi diesel engine was removed from the Fiesta range in 2020.
All cars use a six-speed manual transmission (with the exception of the 1.1L Ti-VCT five-speed manual), while the 123bhp petrol version is offered with a seven-speed DCT auto 'box.
The Fiesta range also includes the Fiesta Active with its raised ride height and off-road styling for people who want an SUV, but like the compact dimensions of a supermini.
In this review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe Fiesta is good fun and remains a solid buy, despite increasingly strong competition.
- 2Engines, performance and driveGreat engines and fun handling mean the Fiesta is still fantastic to drive
- 3MPG, CO2 and running costsEfficient petrol engines and mild-hybrid technology mean the Ford Fiesta is really cheap to run.
- 4Interior, design and technologyNot a class leader for interior quality, but the Ford Fiesta is competitive.
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spaceFord has managed to create more interior space, although the Fiesta doesn't feel much bigger on the outside - so it’s more practical than before.
- 6Reliability and safetyNew hi-tech kit means the Ford Fiesta scores well for safety.
- 7Used and nearly newA full used buyer’s guide on the Ford Fiesta covering the Fiesta Mk8 (2016-date)