A super handling hatch offering low-cost driving thrills!
I have only just recently taken ownership of this vehicle and so far have had no problems. Before I collected the car from an independent dealer the colored steering wheel had faded (apparently a common complaint). However, this had been rectified prior to collection and I understand this is something that can be easily and cheaply put right.
There is a slight rattle/squeak from dashboard.
Despite the limited time that I have owned this car I have so far been highly impressed with it. This fantastic little "warm hatch" will hold great appeal for anybody who is enthusiastic about driving and is seeking to add spice to otherwise budget motoring. The cheeky little Fiesta offers go-kart like handling and will not flinch when pushed hard into bends. It will seat a taller driver comfortably (I am 6'1" and the seating position is perfectly acceptable), although rear space can be limited.
The competent roadholding ability of this vehicle is no secret, however I was still surprised at just how quickly this car can cover ground, particularly on twisty b-roads where the car really comes to life. Do not be put off by performance figures, with a 0-62 time of 10.2 seconds the Zetec-S falls short of some true "hot hatches" but this does not tell the full story. The 1.6 power plant delivers ample power even at low revs which, when combined with this cars nimble handling and precise gearchange allows it to hold it's own against more powerful rivals. This car is also composed at motorway speeds and is not as timesome on long journeys as other super-minis can be.
I have experienced driving faster cars e. g a Clio 172 and a Civic Type-R, both of which offer blistering pace. However the cost of ownership with these vehicles can be prohibitive too many (myself included). This is where the Zetec-S shines, as it offers a similar "grin factor" without breaking the bank, not leat where fuel and insurance premiums are concerned!
I would not necessarily recommend this car to somebody looking for a basic weekend run-about as a standard Fiesta would make more sense. Likewise, if you're easily put off by the odd squeak or rattle you may be better off with a VW Polo. If you're looking for cheap thrills and an enjoyable driving experience then I'd urge you to get behind the wheel and try one for yourself, as it's sure to put a smile on your face.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 14th February, 2005