As Fiesta celebrates its 35th birthday and having successfully sold more than 15 million Fiestas worldwide since inception, the 6th generation of Fiesta is launched in India – a market which is growing fast and furious. The new Fiesta was first launched in Europe in 2008 and since then been dotting the roads across the globe as per Ford’s new “One Ford” strategy to sell the same models with minor changes across their global markets.
In Indian market, Ford hit the bull’s eye with Figo and would love to replicate the success with its launch of all new Fiesta but then the segment is not an easy battle ground. With Hyundai’s Verna Fluidic storming the segment and dethroning the erstwhile king of the segment Honda City, and VW Vento revving behind, let’s see if the all-new-Fiesta has in it to take on the mighty competitors.
This 6th generation Fiesta is based on Ford’s new global B2E platform and it got a complete makeover, which is an eye-catcher if not a show stopper.
Let’s move around the car and have a look at it. To begin with, your immediate line of focus would be on the impressive large black hued headlamp – a three barrel, scimitar shaped that wraps neatly to the sides. Definitely an impressive sight.
A wide trapezoidal grill adds character to the front and together with the lights has a fairly good style and sporty design. The roof line swoops to the rear like one single stroke of artistic brush and it did reminded vaguely of the recently launched Fluidic design, though the swoop down was more fluidic and prominent in the Hyundai Verna. The two strong lines on the sides adds a dash of masculinity. Coming to rear, it’s heavy with a large rear overhang not an impressive first sight and add to that a not so inspiring tail lights docked high, though it is clean and wraps the rear and sides with chrome trimming in the centre. But overall, the rear does let down the front design elements.
Ok, so now let’s movie inside the cars. While opening the doors, you won’t miss the heaviness of the doors. It’s solid and slams gently with a smooth thud. I was told it shows the heavy gauge of the steel used and the impact resistance of the car. Well, might be true but my friend was bit annoyed by the heaviness but then his reaction can be dismissed.
If you are a gadget lover, Fiesta’s dashboard will brighten you up. There is lot many things to fiddle around as well as to track in glowing red back lit and LED screen. Though, I found too much of red on the screen a bit distracting.
Very prominent in the center of the dashboard is a mobile phone inspired console.
The picture is self-explanatory in itself. Apart from the music system menus, you can also connect your mobile phone and dial it. The small screen decked up the dashboard throws up numerous informations like outside temperature, odometer, 1 trip-meter, distance to empty (DTE), real-time fuel (liters/Hour at idle & liters/100 kms when moving), average fuel consumption (liters/100 kms) and average speed. The display can be switched on and off using a button on the console or the left stalk. The music station comes with audio controls on steering wheels and with 6 speakers. The top variant comes with blue-tooth and voice controls for A/c and music system.
Nested infront of the steering is the instrument control – digital tripmeter, tachometer, low fuel warning, driver seat belt warning and head lamp on warning. Incase you are awed by the metallic finish of the consoles, let me tell you except for the top titanium variant, the rest comes only in moulded black.
The seating kind of literally hugs you in, thanks to the extra side wings that wraps you tight. For the average Indian size, it should be a welcome addition unless you are on the above average larger drivers. I found it quiet comfortable. The cabin is roomy enough unlike the outgoing Fiesta. The road view from inside is good too.
All the variants comes with front and rear power windows with one-touch control on driver side. The glove box comes with a lamp. The rear seats are 100% foldable plus with adjustable head rests. the driver seat is height adjustable. And you also get a rear arm rest with cup-holder plus front and rear door trims with cup holder and magazine holders plus a cup holder in floor. All this I just mentioned is available in all variants.
The top variant comes with bluetooth and cruise control for a relaxed driving plus voice control to command the audio console, A/c and the cruise control. Also the reverse parking sensor is parked for the top variant i.e, the Titanium. Better things comes in fatter price tag!
The colors… Fiesta comes in 7 colors.
The heart matters …
Fiesta comes in both Petrol and Diesel engine. Both comes in four versions – Style (the base variant), Trend, Titanium and Titanium plus.
Lets talk about the Petrol engine first. Its a 1499 cc, 4 cylinder In-line 16V DOHC, all aluminum alloy engine delivering a max power output of 109 BHP @ 6045 rpm and max. torque of 140 @ 4500 rpm. Fire the engine, you hardly hear any sound inside. The drive is peppy and navigating around the corners are fun. At times, you tend to get a feeling it is under-powered, but neverthless its a decent drive around the city. If you had been regular on the steering of Honda City, you might feel slightly disappointed riding this one.
Now coming to the Diesel engine, which is a 1.5 liter, 4 cylinder In-line 8V SOHC engine, again like the petrol counterpart, its scaled down from the 1.6 liters that sported the outgoing Fiesta and the existing Fiesta classic, largely to take advantage of the excise duty advantages and also better mileage. The engine delivers 90 BHP @ 3750 rpm and a max torque of 204 Nm @ 2000-2750 rpm. Like the petrol engine, it does feel refined and quiet silent too except for the muted hum. As you drive, you realize the diesel engine is comparatively better than the petrol variant. Though the engine behavior is not very enticing but it is nevertheless good especially on highways.
The mileage …
As per ARAI certificates, the petrol delivers 17 Kmpl and the diesel engine delivers 23.5 Kmpl. On a realistic note, cut 2-3 kmps from the numbers.
Ford got the mathematics right for Figo, the sensible pricing meant a value for money which helped in selling 1 Lakh cars within a year but they seem to have lost the plot with the new Fiesta. Yes, they might be offering few goodies thrown across the variants but then the car is NOT at all cheap when compared to its hot competitors.
The basic variant of petrol starts @ Rs. 8,34,480 and goes up to Rs. 9.54,763 for the top variant while the diesel version starts at Rs. 9,39,563 and goes up to Rs. 10,56,096 for the top variant.
Compared to Honda City and the current hot seller Hyundai Verna Fluidic, the pricing is quiet steep and this should put brakes on the sales numbers of the Fiesta in my opinion. Considering the fact that a small cut of around Rs.60,000 did help Honda City to push their sagging numbers after the launch of Hyundai’s Fluidic, it speaks of the market pulse and that should prove to be a decisive factor in the final numbers game.