2001 Ford Ka 1 1.3 Endura from Australia and New Zealand


Not as good as it looks!


Brake squeal - bad on winter mornings.

Skids when going round roundabouts or braking down a hill.

Poor performance when the air con is on. Very dangerous.

General Comments:

I wouldn't recommend a Ford at all. It is my first and last. I'd rather drive a Holden Astra or Renault Clio!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd January, 2004

2001 Ford Ka Base 1.3 from UK and Ireland


Like a wet dog on a hot day, the ultimate tin can


Nothing has gone wrong as such. Flimsy glove-box seems to be stuck open.

General Comments:

This is a loaner while my Focus 1.8 TD Zetec is being repaired after a RTA last week.

I have to say that the KA loaner is the most basic, nasty, tinny little car it has ever been my misfortune to encounter.

Why anyone would test drive one of these and then say "yes, that's the car for me" is a mystery.

As that engine fires up it reminds me of MK2 Escorts (which it basically is), there is exposed metal in the interior, no AM on the radio, its very hot to drive in, even with the windows open, seats are like torture, steering wheel is spindly and the handing is so poor.

I thought the economy may be its life saver, but its actually quite thirsty for such a tin can. Performance is non-existent.

The only saving grace I can think of is the engine, this has been around for donkeys years and should be very long lasting being a very basic OHV design.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th May, 2003

2001 Ford Ka 1.3 from Australia and New Zealand


Economical micro-machine


I was borrowing this car while my own Kia Rio was having and accident repair.

Overtaking on the highway is not an option.

At 6'3", I felt like an origami ogre stuffed into the claustrophobic confines of an avant garde tin can. Strictly a vehicle for those under 5'10".

Luggage space? What luggage space?

Noisy when pushed.

General Comments:

Outstanding fuel economy.

Handling is fun and involving, unassisted steering a little rubbery.

The only thing easier to park would be a motorcycle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 28th May, 2003

2001 Ford Ka Sun Collection sport 1.3i 16v from UK and Ireland


A great little car with the looks!!!


Nothing serious just the odd things, but hardly anything.

General Comments:

This is car is really fun to drive, and handles very well you stick to the road.

Its quick and moves well in 1st and 2nd gear, but after that its taking its time to get anywhere. You can easily get 90 but I haven't tryed anymore.

The car looks great as it's a sun collection sport not many were made, it looks really sporty shame about perfomence though.

You get alloys, spoiler, sports trim, head rests, all-roof open sunroof, c.d player.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd April, 2003

2001 Ford Ka Luxury 1.3 Endura-E (60 PS) from UK and Ireland


A baby Jaguar, but without the high running costs


The door seals have rusted.

The leather steering wheel has peeled.

One of the A-pillar trim panels didn't match the interior, so we had it replaced (for £7, heh!).

Some rust has appeared on the offside lower seam, to be sorted by Ford.

General Comments:

The above ratings are based on my expectations, not compared to all cars!

This Ka is the Luxury, with optional ABS, so he comes with the full cream-coloured leather interior. This one also has ventilated front disc brakes (from the factory) which are reputed to be a big improvement over the solid disc set up. If you're contemplating a Ka, try to get one with ventilated discs if you're a keen driver, since they don't fade anywhere near as much as the solids.

In terms of the engine, many people slate the Endura-E, but it provides a near-flat torque curve from under 2,000 rpm to over 4,000 rpm, and it's allied to nicely short gearing, so it goes well enough around town. At higher speeds, it can feel a bit breathless, however to be fair, this isn't the design remit. It'll cruise on the motorway at speeds likely to get you a ban if you're caught, it'll reach 70 indicated in third gear, and it's peppy and responsive about town. Running the air conditioning dents performance rather more so than many cars... but few 60 PS cars have air conditioning.

Handling wise, the Ka is still the best handling sub-supermini you can buy in the United Kingdom. It's very "pointable" - you point it where you want to go and it does it. A quick steering rack (powered, of course) helps matters. Push the Ka hard enough and it understeers, back off the throttle and it'll tilt towards oversteer, but it's very progressive (on standard wheels and tyres, at least). There is some body roll, but overall the handling is far in excess of available power - which is just the way I like it. A great roundabout tool.

In terms of ride, "excellent for the size" is a summary. It's remarkably smooth riding, especially considering the handling.

In terms of fuel consumption, I was expecting the Ka to average around 37 to 38 mpg given our city-bound life. As I write, we're averaging 39 mpg, so I'm happy with that.

For running costs, we get the oil and filter changed every 5,000 miles (at Ford Rapid Fit) and he's serviced every 10,000 miles. My dealership is excellent, although most Ford ones are not terribly good. To date, the bills have been par for the course. At 25K, we're on the original brakes and tyres, and these should last for another 10K (subject to track time), despite how he's driven on occasion! Insurance is very cheap.

Overall, he's not without his problems (cheap door seals being the most annoying), but the Ka matches the design remit with flair and brilliance. The fact that it handles as well as many 1990s hot hatches is a bonus!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th April, 2003