Ford Fiesta

A mix of great handling, smart looks and practicality keep the Fiesta at the top of the supermini pile

Why it won...

Once again, the Fiesta has demonstrated its superiority in the supermini sector. The Ford’s head-turning looks, boldly designed cabin and sparkling chassis have all helped secure a remarkable third consecutive victory in this closely fought category.

Yet it’s hard to believe that this car is already three years old, as the sharply styled exterior still manages to turn heads. The classy cabin also continues to serve up a winning blend of form and function – there is plenty of space inside, and the boot is nearly as big as in the larger Focus family hatch.

Video: watch CarBuyer's video review of the Ford Fiesta

[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"content_narrow","fid":"69693","attributes":{"alt":"","class":"media-image"}}]]

As you’d expect from Ford, there’s a variant for every taste and budget, plus a range of engines that blends pace, refinement and economy. Better still, every model offers the same healthy helping of driver appeal. Few cars at any price can match the Fiesta’s incredible ride and handling balance, or its ability to deliver thrills behind the wheel – the recently introduced 132bhp S1600 is one of the best warm hatches money can buy.

Nearly three years after making its debut, the Ford is  showing no sign of releasing its grip on the supermini crown. A raft of recent tweaks to the line-up has only served to boost its appeal, with the frugal ECOnetic now available in a range of trim levels for the first time. 

One thing is very clear: it’s going to take something special to knock the Fiesta off the top spot in 2012.

Our pick: The 1.25 Zetec model’s petrol engine serves up peppy performance and decent fuel economy, while the long tally of standard kit includes air-conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity and classy ambient cabin lighting. This is the only car many drivers will ever need. 

Highly commended

Renault Clio Trust Renault to bring some flair to the supermini category. The Clio isn’t as eye-catching, but comes closer than most to matching the Ford’s blend of comfort and fun behind the wheel. A strong engine line-up, smart cabin and generous kit count all help it to secure a well earned podium finish.

Suzuki Swift We challenge anyone not to be impressed by the Suzuki Swift. It’s fun to drive, has an impressively upmarket interior and benefits from decent refinement. A smooth and punchy diesel broadens its immense appeal. Small boot and cramped rear are the only things holding it back.

Recommended

Ford Fiesta review
Ford Fiesta facelift - front cornering
Ford Fiesta

Ford Fiesta review

The Fiesta is good fun and remains a solid buy, despite increasingly strong competition
20 Jun 2022
Used Ford Fiesta (Mk7, 2008-2017) review
Used Ford Fiesta Mk7 - front
Ford Fiesta Hatchback

Used Ford Fiesta (Mk7, 2008-2017) review

One of Britain’s best-selling cars, the Ford Fiesta is a stylish supermini that’s brilliant to drive, cost effective to run and offers decent practica…
8 Dec 2021

Most Popular

EU demands speed limiters on all new cars from next week: know the rules and how they work
speed limiters
News

EU demands speed limiters on all new cars from next week: know the rules and how they work

Car industry body calls for UK government to adopt the new measures, but we’ll probably get them anyway…
29 Jun 2022
New MG 4 electric hatch arrives with 280 miles of range
New MG 4 2023
News

New MG 4 electric hatch arrives with 280 miles of range

The all-electric MG 4 hatchback rivals the Volkswagen ID.3 and introduces MG’s new MSP electric platform
28 Jun 2022
New Toyota Corolla prototype review
Toyota Corolla prototype - front
Road tests

New Toyota Corolla prototype review

We try out the updated Toyota Corolla hybrid ahead of its official arrival
30 Jun 2022