The new Ford Fiesta set for SA
Ford has just introduced their new Fiesta to the South African market, but the big news isn’t the revised exterior or the upgraded interior. No, the bombshell that’s bound to attract the most comment is the fact that the new top-of-the-range model is a 1.0-litre car that costs R231 500.
In South Africa, where a lot of us still believe there’s no replacement for displacement, a tiny 999cc engine that commands the same price as much larger capacity competitors is going to raise more than eyebrows. We were pretty sceptical too before we drove it. You can read our full review in the April issue which goes on sale on 18 March, but suffice it to say that the tiny turbocharged engine is a revelation.
Our advice? Drive it first and then deliver judgement. The engine, winner of the International Engine of the Year award in Europe, is a gem. Quiet and smooth at highway speeds, responsive and quick when you boot it. It will run up to a top speed of 196kph and do the 0-100 sprint in 9.4 seconds. It produces 92kW and 170Nm of torque, but it sips fuel at a claimed 4.3 litre per 100km and emits only 99g of CO2. You’ll struggle to replicate that fuel consumption in the real word, mainly because it’s so tempting to boot the accelerator on this car. Also because claimed fuel consumption figures are vastly optimistic (the tests aren’t done in real driving conditions, but run on a dyno at ridiculously stupid speeds).
Still, the Fiesta sips less fuel than a Toyota Prius but is vastly more fun to drive. The Fiesta ST, which arrives in April with a 1.6 litre boosted engine, will be even more fun. We’re really looking forward to that. Until then the pricing for new Fiesta’s are as follows:
Fiesta 1.4 Ambiente – R164 400
Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Ambiente – R178 400
Fiesta 1.4 Trend – R187 600
Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Trend – R201 400
Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost Trend – R211 200
Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost Titanium – R231 500
The Fiesta is available with a four-year or 120 000km warranty and four-year or 60 000km service plan.