2017 Ford Fiesta Hatchback Automated Check | Overview


What It Is: Globally, the Ford Fiesta is without doubt one of the model’s most profitable nameplates. It debuted in 1976 and shortly grew to become a staple of the subcompact phase, at the very least exterior the US. Though the Fiesta has been offered constantly for greater than 40 years abroad, it has spent a lot much less time in America. It first made the scene within the States for a quick time within the late Nineteen Seventies and solely not too long ago returned in its sixth era for the 2011 mannequin 12 months. In each cases, the automotive exceeded expectations and additional proved {that a} small, cheap automotive is also enjoyable. However tiny but sensible automobiles have by no means been extremely desired in America, and Ford has offered solely 36,139 Fiestas within the U.S. by the primary 9 months of this 12 months, in contrast with 123,827 Focuses.

Due to this and the low revenue margins on such automobiles, the mannequin’s future in America is doubtful. Ford of Europe already has unveiled a redesigned, seventh-generation Fiesta as a 2018 mannequin. However within the States, the 2018 Fiesta is a carryover of the present, sixth-gen automotive. Ford has mentioned that the following iteration of the high-performance Fiesta ST won’t be offered right here, and there’s a great probability the entire line ultimately might be dropped.

Why We Examined It and How It Carried out: With all this uncertainty, we needed to see if the model being offered right here nonetheless is aggressive or if it’s getting lapped by new opponents. For this take a look at, we had a 2017 Fiesta hatchback within the top-level Titanium trim with the naturally aspirated 1.6-liter inline-four and a six-speed dual-clutch computerized transmission. The automotive wore a sticker worth of $20,620, and the one upcharge was $795 for the Sony audio system and 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment unit with voice instructions and navigation. For reference, a fundamental Fiesta hatch could be had for lower than 15 grand, and Ford additionally provides the automotive as a sedan for roughly the identical cash.

The usual Fiesta isn’t spectacular on paper, however the goodness of its chassis and steering makes up for its perceived deficiencies elsewhere. Ford has dropped the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine from the lineup for 2018, so the one engine provided for non-ST Fiestas is the 1.6-liter. It fails to excite, particularly when paired with the dual-clutch computerized (commonplace on the Titanium) relatively than the five-speed guide that’s accessible on decrease trim ranges. Packing 120 horsepower at 6350 rpm and 112 lb-ft of torque at 5000, our take a look at automotive hit 60 mph in 9.1 seconds and ran the quarter-mile in 17.1 seconds at 81 mph. The Fiesta stopped from 70 mph in 175 toes and managed 0.83 g on the skidpad on Hankook Optimo H426 all-season rubber.

Though this phase isn’t identified for its efficiency chops and has historically torpid contributors, the Fiesta is falling behind. The not too long ago redone Kia Rio is a surprisingly nice general bundle and provides extra pep. It speed-walked to 60 in 8.5 seconds and handed the quarter-mile mark in 16.7 seconds. Its grip was not pretty much as good, nevertheless—it managed solely 0.79 g on the skidpad and required 182 toes to cease from 70 mph. The guide model of the refreshed 2018 Match was even faster, with a zero-to-60-mph time of 8.2 seconds. It supplied a strong combo of grip and braking as effectively, halting in 179 toes and hitting 0.81 g.

What We Like: Acceleration isn’t what defines the Fiesta—though the 197-hp ST is about two seconds faster to 60 and considerably extra entertaining. What makes this automotive price speaking about is its strong street presence. It’s spunky but refined for a small financial system automotive. Like most such vehicles, it may be unsettled at excessive speeds or on severely bumpy roads, however it’s fairly enjoyable to hustle round city. The steering has good weight and crisp responses, and the cornering efficiency encourages playfulness with safe physique management.

What We Don’t Like: The Fiesta’s age is mirrored significantly within the cabin. Fingers, arms, and elbows are met with laborious and oddly textured plastic, and high quality could be a difficulty. The seat-adjustment deal with actually broke off in our hand once we tried to decrease the seating place. Inconsistent panel gaps and trim alignment clearly remind patrons they’re in an financial system automotive, the center-stack design is busy, and the seats are stiff. Granted, low cost subcompacts aren’t anticipated to have glamorous interiors, however vehicles akin to the brand new Rio increase the bar for this area, and its cabin makes the Fiesta’s finishes feel and appear that a lot worse. Furthermore, passenger house is among the many worst on this class, a big level in a phase the place each inch counts.

Verdict: The Fiesta nonetheless provides some enjoyable, however this social gathering is winding down.

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