AM Online

AM Awards: New Car of the Year, Ford Fiesta

New Car of the Year sponsored by Diamondbrite

The new Fiesta topped the UK car sales charts for the third month running in January. Its not surprising for a car which has been one of the best-selling B-sector models for three decades, chalking up 3.4 million sales since its launched in 1977. It’s also the UK’s top-selling retail car, period.

The latest version perfectly fits the current fashion to downsize. Not only is it good looking, but it is lighter and more fuel-efficient than its predecessor. 

It also has good space for four adults and their luggage, making it a great all-round offering. 

It’s a competitive segment but Ford has really played a trump card with the Fiesta’s success. Chart-topping figures have seen it sell 31,615 units since launch in October.

The car features a trapezoidal grille, swept-back headlamps and the rising belt line which characterises all new Fords.
The tapered roof gives aerodynamic efficiency while the exterior design elements are carried over inside the car, led by the mobile phone-inspired central console interface.

It is, says Ford, the most expressive show of kinetic design it has yet brought to the market. 

As former Ford of Britain boss Roelant de Waard said at its launch: “It’s all about style in this sector.”

But the Fiesta is about more than just looks: it’s sturdily built, feeling more like a big car than a small one, and is packed with equipment and features, including reach and rake steering adjustment, integrated turn indicators, automatic headlamps and wipers and powered door mirrors.

“It is lighter, more compact and more fuel-efficient
than its predecessor”

Ford also increased the budget for noise and vibration insulation. It hopes to sell 104,000 units in 2009 but is putting more emphasis on retail deals and selling higher up in the trim mix.

As a result, retail sales are increasing and are currently around 60%. Three and five-door versions sell in near-equal numbers.

Zetec, its mid-range trim, is the most popular model and panther black the most chosen colour.

The latest incarnation is arguably Ford’s most important model, with sales up 28.3% on January 2008.


  • Citroën C5
  • Honda Jazz
  • Seat Ibiza
  • Vauxhall Insignia

See the awards photo gallery.

Read full coverage of the AM Awards in the 6 March 09 issue of AM. To subscribe to AM magazine click here or call 01733 468659.



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