Fiesta ups its game in every respect
Standout features of the Ford Fiesta Trend 1.5TDCi are not just its rakish looks but more so the potent looking grill - the focal point on most recent Ford cars. More surprising was the performance of the turbodiesel engine during the 80-120km/h acceleration in 3rd gear at 9.2 seconds. Engine silence during the run was another highlight.
Driving a diesel, best results come via a certain degree of know-how. Like not using high revs. Most reports hark on the 1.5 TDCi’s rather low power output of 63kW rather than the 170Nm at 1759rpm. In fact, at around 1900rpm you’re whizzing around impressively at 120km/h in comparative silence with corpulent amounts of peak torque and quick accelerator responses. And to that end – thanks to the exclusive 1.5TDCi 6-speed manual gearbox to the Trend diesel.
Handling is impressive via the 15% increased torsional chassis stiffness and positive steering feel via reduced steering friction.
Other gained attributes come via the front track being increased by 30mm, rear track by 10mm, wheelbase by 4mm and stiffer hollow front anti-roll bar.
Latest chassis improvements also result in 10% more cornering grip, supported by Electronic Torque Vectoring Control that reduces braking distances at 100km/h by more than 8%. Also in place are double-bonded suspension bushes that are twice as stiff as before for sharper steering response, which combined with a larger rear twistbeam, reduces impact of small bumps and road noise in the cabin.
Safety features include six airbags, ISOFIX child seat anchorage points, ABS with EBA, EBD and Hill Launch Assist. Ford’s innovative cabin includes SYNC®3 infotainment system with 6.5-inch colour touch screen with access to the radio, six speakers and dual USB ports with multimedia access and charging Bluetooth functionality. Impressive .
Fuel efficiency during testing is enhanced by Auto Start Stop technology, Eco button and under-body aero shielding that reduces aero drag.
QUICK TEST – Ford Fiesta 1.5 TDCI Trend
Engine: 63kW 175Nm 1499cc turbodiesel
Drive: 6-speed manual FWD
TESTED: (1500m ASL)
400m: 18.7sec @ 121km/h
80-120km/h: 9.1 sec
LIST PRICE R300K