2011 Ford Fiesta SE 1.6 gas from North America

Summary:

Best car ever?

Faults:

The driver's side window (electric) got stuck once. Fixed it under warranty.

Outside of that, there hasn't been a single issue in 40K miles, and I give her the beans.

General Comments:

I'm not kidding when I say, for me, the Ford Fiesta may be the greatest car ever made, for its rare combination of attributes.

Firstly, it is very fun to drive.

Secondly, you can fit a dresser drawer in it.

Thirdly, I average better than 40 MPG in the summer on straight gas. Best tank ever was 45.3 (hypermiled).

With this last one comes the only trade off in this car. The engine is what you might call "rubber band". The fun is to be had in braking and cornering (very light and poised, great steering feel); not so much in exiting the corner. But I'm very happy breaking late and pulling some g's without using any extra fuel at all. The manual transmission obviously helps with this as well (but sticks are just inherently more fun to drive -- do people still know this?).

That said, looking forward to my next car, the 3-cylinder turbo Fiesta. Said to provide quite a bit more thump, AND improve the economy (I guess then technically that makes that car the best ever).

Assorted notes: the car is a bit stiffer than most of the boats on American roads, though not terrible; the seats are super comfy except for the headrests, which jut like a half-inch too far forward; finally, not a deal-breaker, but it would be super fantastic if the seats folded flat (it's a lot to ask for such a cheap car I suppose). Das ist alles!

I hope I've talked you into it; if you value the characteristics I listed above, you will love this car. There just aren't too many autos, in this country at least, that tick off as many boxes as this one does.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th November, 2014

2011 Ford Fiesta CL 1.6 from Australia and New Zealand

Summary:

Great car let down by a crappy transmission

Faults:

Rattle noises at certain speeds in the left front door.

Ongoing and endless issues with the automatic transmission.

Original factory Continental tyres are only good for 20000 to 25000 kilometers.

General Comments:

For the price and as a city car, it is spot on.

The good…

• Modern design and good looks.

• Great interior (when compared to others cars in its class and price).

• Amazing road holding; almost feels like a go cart around corners.

• Surprisingly roomy for such a small exterior.

• Good ergonomics, I am 6 foot and am able to find a comfortable driving position.

• Better than average stereo, with Bluetooth for your phone.

• Fuel economy at 6.5L/100km is on the good end of the scale.

• Air con is adequate.

• Usable boot size (again when compared to others in the class such as the Suzuki Swift).

• Under the bonnet, the car still looks like new; no leaks or issues of any kind.

The bad…

• The ride is a little harsh. I guess that is the trade-off for the brilliant handling.

• Engine sounds a little harsh

Here comes the big one, the Powershift 6 speed dry dual clutch auto is a shocker. I could write volumes about the issues with the auto, but here is a small summary:

• When you slow down or stop, it sounds like a mechanic just dropped a handful of spanners under the bonnet.

• First gear is useless; only engages for the first few seconds.

• Second gear slips; had it back to Ford several times, and they then reset and calibrate the auto. It works fine for a couple of weeks, and then plays up again.

• Driving up the hill into the garage, it will suddenly leap forward when accelerating.

• Auto smarts (computer) is pretty stupid. It doesn’t know if you're accelerating or slowing down. Many times it selects the wrong gear, or worse, doesn’t disengage when you stop in time.

• The auto is supposed to learn your driving style, but instead, if you want to live with this car, you will have to adopt your driving to accommodate the dimwitted auto.

In summary, I love the car, but whatever you do, get the manual, or if you must have an auto, look somewhere else.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th March, 2013

1st Jun 2014, 23:34

Saw an item on YouTube re the electrical ground not making good contact where it bolts to the car body. This results in inadequate power to run all the electrical controls in the transmission, along with all the other electricals in the car. The bolt should be a certain type and the contact area should be cleaned, according to the item.