Not just the best small car I have driven this year. Is this the also the best Fiesta so far?
Jonathan Humphrey hits the roads in the likeable Fiesta Active B&O Play 1.0T Ecoboost.
The Fiesta Active is a stylish version of the ever-popular All-New Fiesta. There are some subtle changes to the car to make it the 'Active' model, just a tad higher, with increased ride height and a little wider track, rough road suspension and more robust urban look.
It displays a great idea to take the flavour of an SUV or crossover and apply it to the successful small cars in the Ford Range. The KA and the Focus are getting the same treatment. Small SUVs generally haven't been that great to drive, but a more sturdy version of these hot hatches is appealing and proffers the best of both worlds, fun to drive and an outward bound feeling. Just don't go too outward bound with the Fiesta Active, it's not a 4x4 and not that good at all offroad. The word active applies to you, not so much the car. Although, in the words of the Boss it's "tougher than the rest".
The model I am driving this week is equipped with the 1.0T Ecoboost the latest version of Fords three-cylinder award-winning powertrain. It can't claim to be a road burner, stick to the sporty Fiesta ST for that, but what it has is adequate power 100PS reasonable torque and a 0-62 time of 12.4-second topping out at 111mph. Although these engines are small, these technologically advanced three-cylinder engines are highly flexible and the refined nature of the engine and drivetrain make the cabin commendably quiet at speed. The steering is light and easy and the car I am driving has the automatic transmission in place of the 6-speed manual making it a comfortable, relaxed car to drive.
There are selectable drive modes of Eco, Normal and slippery, which optimises the steering and stability providing you with a touch more traction and increasing the chance of getting safely out of sports day, Goodwood or Glastonbury should you be so lucky. I particularly liked the auto transmission and the refinement and ease of driving along with the adaptive cruise control. A nice touch for such a small car, with the braking and accelerating being handled by the cruise control, keeping my speed down and achieving better economy.
Around the car, the Active model is raised just 18mm higher than the standard model Fiesta. It features attractive 5-spoke alloy wheels with a machined finish a black roof and matching roof rails; moulded plastic wheel-arch extensions give it the more rugged look. Its all distinctively styled and for me this is one of the best looking small cars on the road
With the Active B&O play model the Bang & Olufsen 10 speaker sound system with 360 degree sound is a must. It is a great sounding system combined with the intuitive Ford Sync 3/Apple Carplay/Android Auto combo. The system is worth every penny and perfect for hands free calls/texts and navigation. Top it off with in-car Spotify which I am finding I use more and more these days for on the go music.
The interior is trimmed in an easy to clean, hard wearing grey/black cloth with an Active motif. The dashboard also features a yellow colour theme and small signatures and Active logos are a nice touch on the doorstep plates.
Testing cars these days it becomes more and more important to get them out on an unlit open road to recognise just how good the lighting is. The extremely bright halogen projector headlights on the Fiesta Active are exemplary, with auto high beam. Attractive LED daytime running lights and LED rear lights sign the look off. The overall spec of this Fiesta gives the feeling of a much bigger more expensive car.
The Fiesta Active is available with the choice of four petrol and two diesels engines. All things considered and dependent on your driving demands the Ecoboost 100ps version made for a comfortable, safe, flexible small car with a great interior, superb sound system, connectivity that works, relatively good fuel economy what more could you want.
Car reviewed: Ford Fiesta Active B&O Play 1.0T Ecoboost 6-Speed Auto Price On the road £20,545 with options as tested £23,240 0-62mph 12.4 secs Top speed 111mph Fuel Economy combined 46.3mpg CO2 emissions 139g/km Engine 998cc Ecoboost unleaded 3-cylinder EU6 Max Power 100PS@6500rpm Torque 170Nm@1500rpm Transmission 6-speed automatic with manual mode
B&O Sound system
Makes you feel good
A sweet and refined small car
Some options can be expensive
What the others say on YouTube about the Fiesta Active...
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