Ford Fiesta logo

Ford Fiesta

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heycar review

      Launch year
      2017
      Body type
      Small hatch
      Fuel type
      Petrol, Diesel
heycar editorial team

Written by

heycar editorial team

00/10
heycar rating
“Arguably the very best supermini”

Best bits

  • Comfortable, well made and roomy cabin
  • Impressive levels of refinement coupled to great driving fun
  • Wide range of engines and trims to pick from

Not so great

  • Some models are expensive
  • Handling doesn’t feel as sharp as the old car’s in some versions
  • 1.1-litre petrol engine now feeling outdated

Read by

Ford Fiesta Front

Overall verdict

Ford Fiesta Interior

On the inside

Ford Fiesta Driving

Driving

Ford Fiesta Back

How much does it cost to run

Ford Fiesta Side

Prices, versions and specification

Overall verdict

"Many cars get larger as they are replaced with a new generation, but Ford has resisted this with its current eighth incarnation of the Fiesta."

Ford Fiesta Front

Instead, the present bearer of this illustrious name manages to feel more grown up and provide more interior space all while occupying much the same space on the road as the old car it replaced in 2017.


For this Ford, the more considered, mature approach is one that works ideally as you can still aspire to a Fiesta as your first car after passing the driving test or pick one as a replacement for a more expensive, larger car without feeling like you are giving up any of life’s rewards. As with every Fiesta that has gone before, this one comes in a giddying array of trims, engines and specs to let buyers hone the car to their preferences. There are the hot hatch ST and off-roady Active versions for even more variation on the theme.


Sticking to the main Fiesta range, it comes in three- and five-door hatchback forms to lock horns with the Vauxhall Corsa and Volkswagen Polo, as well as the Hyundai i20, Renault Clio, SEAT Ibiza, Skoda Fabia and Toyota Yaris. That strength and depth of competition means the Fiesta can only ever be on top form if it wants to stay as one of the best-selling cars in its class.


To achieve that aim, the Fiesta offers a more refined drive than its predecessor to tackle the Polo head-on for comfort. It also serves up more grip and cornering prowess to keep the Renault Clio at bay, while more luxurious versions even have the ability to give the MINI and Audi A1 a run for their considerable money.


Doing all of this requires the Fiesta to be offered in a broad range of trims. You can choose from the entry-point Trend, which replaced the Zetec in mid-2019, Titanium, Titanium X, ST-Line and Vignale. With the ST-Line, you get a firmer suspension arrangement that shows just how brilliant the Fiesta can be when allowed to shine on a twisting country road.


The other models in the line-up have a softer set-up that confers greater comfort on the Ford supermini, though you certainly wouldn’t complain about their nimble handling or steering with bags of feel. More importantly for the majority of customers for these cars is they are quieter at all speeds and come packed with plenty of kit, including the ‘floating’ infotainment screen and lane departure warning as standard.


As well as the spread of trims to choose from, you have three 1.0-litre Ecoboost turbo petrol engines to select from with 100-, 125- and 140PS, plus a 1.1-litre with 85PS as the lowest rung on the ladder. For diesel fans, Ford offers two 1.5-litre Duratorq motors in 85- and 120PS outputs. All of these engines come with six-speed manual gearboxes, except the 1.1 that uses a five-speeder. If you want an auto, the 100PS 1.0 is the only Fiesta for you.


Such a wide offering is typical of the Ford Fiesta and why it remains the supermini for just about everyone.


Is the Ford Fiesta right for you?

If you cannot find a Fiesta body, engine and trim combo to suit your needs, you’re either very fussy or just not in the market for a supermini. While it’s by no means the only fruit in the supermini orchard, the Ford is justifiably so successful by providing buyers with a massive suite of models, engines and options.


With this eighth generation of Fiesta, Ford has brought more comfort into the equation, so the car massages its way over bumpy roads more smoothly. Yet, it still has the same verve when it comes to corners, you just have to look a little more to find it.


Whether it’s as a first car fresh from ripping up the L-plates, dependable sole vehicle or the back-up car in the family, the Fiesta does it all and does it very well. Little wonder it’s routinely at the top of the sales chart.


What’s the best Ford Fiesta model/engine to choose?

While the 1.5-litre TDCi turbodiesel engines are perfect for those who rack up large mileages in their Ford Fiesta, our pick is one of the 1.0-litre Ecoboost petrols. These turbocharged three-cylinder motors are among the best of the glut of engines of the same cylinder count and capacity used in many superminis now.


You can have a six-speed automatic coupled to the 100PS 1.0-litre engine, but we’d rather have the smooth-shifting six-speed manual. We’d also avoid the 1.1-litre petrol with its five-speed gearbox that now feels quite dated next to its sibling engines.


The three-door Fiesta perhaps looks a little sportier, but we’d choose the five-door for its greater practicality. As for trim, the Trend is perhaps a little too basic, so better to look at the well equipped Titanium and Titanium X versions or the ST-Line if you want something a racier slant. For outright luxury, the Vignale does the trick but comes with a premium price to match.


What other cars are similar to the Ford Fiesta?

The Ford Fiesta is up against the supermini big hitters in the shapes of the Vauxhall Corsa and Volkswagen Polo. Both are very accomplished cars with similar levels of comfort, agility, tech, space and safety to the Ford. For some, the VW has an added veneer of quality, while others will prefer the looks of the Corsa.


Elsewhere, you’ll find the SEAT Ibiza, one of our favourites, as well as the Skoda Fabia, Toyota Yaris. The Mazda 2 is hard to ignore for its quality, while the MINI and Audi A1 are also within the Fiesta’s sights at the more premium end of the sector.


Learn more

Ford Fiesta Interior

On the inside

Ford Fiesta Driving

Driving

Ford Fiesta Back

How much does it cost to run

Ford Fiesta Side

Prices, versions and specification