Ford Fiesta Titanium

1.5 TDCI

Ford Fiesta, 2017, front, static
Ford Fiesta, 2017, rear
Ford Fiesta, 2017, side
Ford Fiesta, 2017, rear
Ford Fiesta, 2017, interior
Ford Fiesta, 2017, gear lever

AS Britain's best selling car for some considerable time the Ford Fiesta is one of those winning formulas that doesn't really need messing with.

An all-new 2017 version wisely doesn't radically overhaul the Fiesta's looks though there improvements a-plenty aimed at making it a more tempting and tantalising option than ever.

The styling changes are very much on the subtle side - the exterior styling has been tightened via new panels lights front and rear and a more eye-catching grille but otherwise it's very much the familiar Fiesta people have come to know and love.

Cleverly Ford have upped their game on the inside with a distinctly more premium kind of feel throughout the cabin and a host of technological features that aim to keep pace with or even trump rivals.

The quality of materials used throughout has been enhanced and another big improvement is a simpler and more intuitive instrumentation set-up.

This model was a fairly high-spec one near the top end of the range and featured the SYNC 3 Navigation eight-inch colour touchscreen which allows you to control the sat-nav, infotainment system and other functions too.

Once you become comfortable with it you can also use pinch and swipe gestures to operate it.

In line with the general trend for small cars to get ever bigger, the latest Fiesta is larger on the inside than its predecessor too.

For a small car it manages to achieve something of a big car feel and rear seat passengers in particular have more space and legroom. The boot is bigger too.

As mentioned this particular model sits near the top of the range and has a price tag which reflects that. With an on the road price of just over £18,500 it ain't cheap and one could argue that's a lot to pay for a small car.

This particular car also had some extras including an openable panorama roof which took the cost to just over £21,000.

However to be fair the range starts at around £12,500, so if you want a more reasonably priced Fiesta with a small-ish petrol engine and not too many creature comforts it is still fairly affordable.

This diesel unit is a more than capable all-rounder and represents a first in the shape of a 1.5-litre diesel being available in a Fiesta.

As well as being smooth, potent and refined it's also incredibly economical, with a combined economy figure of 88.3mpg and low emissions of just 89g/km.

The small but powerful petrol engines will be favoured by many buyers - the three-cylinder 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine being available with 100bhp, 125bhp and 140bhp. In all there are five petrol engines and two diesel.

Other Fiesta improvements include a new six-speed gearbox which impressed and stop-start technology across the range to improve fuel efficiency.

One of the great strengths of the Fiesta has always been its sharp handling and this is still the case.

As ever it's fun to drive and having that 1.5-litre diesel under the bonnet makes for a car that can be driven enthusiastically with plenty of feedback for the keen driver.

FAST FACTS

Ford Fiesta Titanium 1.5 TDCI

Price: £18,525

Mechanical: 120bhp, 1,499cc, 4cyl diesel engine driving front wheels via 6-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed: 121mph

0-62mph: 9 seconds

Combined MPG: 88.3

Insurance Group: 14

C02 emissions: 89g/km

Bik rating: 20%

Warranty: 3yrs/60,000 miles

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