Ford Fiesta Review 2024

Ford Fiesta At A Glance

Honest John Overall Rating
The Ford Fiesta is the first car many people ever drive and, for many, it’s all the car they will ever need. Its versatility, low running costs and practicality are all at their best in this generation of Ford’s superlative hatchback.

+Most versions good to drive especially ST-Line but significantly more refined, comfortable and practical, comes with active safety technology as standard.

-Several Fiesta models including Vignale now list at more than £20,000.

New prices start from £20,930
Insurance Groups are between 5–17
On average it achieves 78% of the official MPG figure

There’s a wide range of engines to choose from, three- and five-door body styles, a hot hatch model and even a crossover-style Active version. All of this is backed up with strong build quality and driving manners that leave all of the Ford’s rivals wondering which way it went on a country road thanks to its supreme ride and handling balance.

Many cars get larger as they are replaced with a new generation, but Ford has resisted this with its current eighth incarnation of the Fiesta. Instead, the present bearer of this illustrious name manages to feel more grown up and provide more interior space all while occupying much the same space on the road as the old car it replaced in 2017.

For this Ford, the more considered, mature approach is one that works ideally as you can still aspire to a Fiesta as your first car after passing the driving test or pick one as a replacement for a more expensive, larger car without feeling like you are giving up any of life’s rewards.

As with every Fiesta that has gone before, this one comes in a giddying array of trims, engines and specs to let buyers hone the car to their preferences. There are the hot hatch ST and off-roady Active versions for even more variation on the theme.

Sticking to the main Fiesta range, it comes in three- and five-door hatchback forms to lock horns with the Vauxhall Corsa and Volkswagen Polo, as well as the Hyundai i20, Renault Clio, SEAT Ibiza, Skoda Fabia and Toyota Yaris. That strength and depth of competition means the Fiesta can only ever be on top form if it wants to stay as one of the best-selling cars in its class.

To achieve that aim, the Fiesta offers a more refined drive than its predecessor to tackle the Polo head-on for comfort. It also serves up more grip and cornering prowess to keep the Renault Clio at bay, while more luxurious versions even have the ability to give the MINI and Audi A1 a run for their considerable money.

Doing all of this requires the Fiesta to be offered in a broad range of trims. You can choose from the entry-point Trend, which replaced the Zetec in mid-2019, Titanium, Titanium X, ST-Line and Vignale. With the ST-Line, you get a firmer suspension arrangement that shows just how brilliant the Fiesta can be when allowed to shine on a twisting country road.

The other models in the line-up have a softer set-up that confers greater comfort on the Ford supermini, though you certainly wouldn’t complain about their nimble handling or steering with bags of feel.

More importantly for the majority of customers for these cars is they are quieter at all speeds and come packed with plenty of kit, including the ‘floating’ infotainment screen and lane departure warning as standard.

As well as the spread of trims to choose from, you have three 1.0-litre Ecoboost turbo petrol engines to select from with 100-, 125- and 140PS, plus a 1.1-litre with 85PS as the lowest rung on the ladder. For diesel fans, Ford offers two 1.5-litre Duratorq motors in 85- and 120PS outputs.

All of these engines come with six-speed manual gearboxes, except the 1.1 that uses a five-speeder. If you want an auto, the 100PS 1.0 is the only Fiesta for you.

Such a wide offering is typical of the Ford Fiesta and why it remains the small hatch for just about everyone.

Looking for a second opinion? Why not read heycar's Ford Fiesta review.

Ask Honest John

What should I replace my Fiesta with?

"I have a Ford Fiesta 1.25 Edge 2009 but need to replace it, I am happy with 3 or 5 door but need to fit 5 people in the car sometimes. I would like a newer car to keep repair costs down. I mainly do town driving. Budget approximately £5000. I appreciate it might not be possible but heated seats would be lovely."
If you are happy with your Fiesta and it is large enough for your needs you could consider replacing it with a newer model, or an alternative such as the Volkswagen Polo or Hyundai i20. If you need something larger, you could look at the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf, Skoda Octavia or Hyundai i30. All of these vehicles were available with heated seats, but you may have to search to find one equipped with this feature.
Answered by David Ross

Does the Ford Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost mHEV have a wet belt system?

"I'm thinking of buying one of these but a bit put off by stories of the 'Ecoboom' engine! Does this model have an internal wet belt (apparently the root cause of the exploding engines) or an external timing belt (more reliable, probably)? "
The mild-hybrid EcoBoost engine fitted to the Fiesta uses a timing chain rather than a timing belt.
Answered by David Ross

Why did the emissions for the Ford Fiesta 1.25 Zetec change?

"The emissions on the Ford Fiesta 1.25 Zetec were 120g/km, which put it in band C, Euro 5 and £35 tax. Then in Jan 2015 the emissions suddenly went to 122g/km and went into band D, Euro 6 and £150 tax. I understand the emissions scenario, but were the emissions manipulated. I was going to buy a Ford Fiesta, but it was £150 to tax, but found one registered two days earlier at £35 to tax!"
During the lifespan of a car in production it is not uncommon for changes to the vehicle to occur, whether it is a required mechanical change or even a change in the way performance is calculated, which can result in a change such as this. A difference of 2g/km is a small change in the grand scheme of things, it just happens to result in a significant change in the rate of VED due to the rules at the time.
Answered by David Ross

Will fitting Michelin Cross Climate+ tyres affect my fuel consumption?

"My 2017 Fiesta 1.0 litre Ecoboost (previous model) has 195/55/15 tyres which are due for replacement. I'm considering changing to an All Season tyre. ATS have Michelin Crossclimate+ at £108 fitted, Cross Climate2 at £145 fitted or Continental All Season at £141 fitted. Only the Cross Climate 2 are B rated for economy. The others are C rated. The car at present has Conti Eco Contact which are B rated - the MPG averages around 45 MPG. Any idea how different this might be with C rated all season tyres? My annual mileage is around 6000 to 8000. Any other makes you would suggest?"
The economy rating on tyres actually refers to rolling resistance, which is a key factor in fuel consumption, but it is worth noting that the difference in rolling resistance between an A-rated tyre and a G-rated tyre is only 7.5%. Given that your annual mileage is relatively low, we would not expect to see a massive change in fuel consumption, although we would expect it to drop a little.
Answered by David Ross
More Questions

What does a Ford Fiesta cost?