Last week Ford revealed its next generation Fiesta at the German factory where it will be built. Not one, but four new Fiestas, were shown - four distinctive production variants of the next generation Fiesta: the stylish Fiesta Titanium, the Ford Performance-inspired Fiesta ST-Line, the upscale Fiesta Vignale, and the Fiesta Active crossover.
Featuring a distinctive exterior, and ergonomic interior that offers an eight-inch floating high-definition touchscreen and Ford’s sophisticated SYNC3 communications and entertainment system, Fiesta also will be the first Ford to deliver a premium ‘B&O Play’ sound system.
Ford also says the expanded Fiesta range will offer more personalisation options to customers than ever before, and enhances the sporty, fun to drive character that has delighted generations of customers.
The next generation Fiesta will for the first time be offered as a luxurious Ford Fiesta Vignale model – part of the Ford Vignale upscale product and ownership experience. The Fiesta Vignale joins the Mondeo, S-MAX, Kuga and Edge Vignale models as the highest expression of the Ford brand in Europe, and offers unique 18-inch alloys wheel designs, exclusive exterior detailing and colours, and hexagonal-quilted, tuxedo-stitched leather seats.
The Fiesta Active is the first Fiesta crossover model, combining rugged SUV-inspired styling that includes raised ride-height, roof bars and additional exterior bodystyling; hatchback practicality; and true Fiesta driving dynamics. The Active series will join the Fiesta line up later on in the launch period.
Earlier this year Ford introduced a new range of ST-Line models that deliver exterior and interior styling inspired by Ford Performance models alongside powerful Ford EcoBoost petrol and TDCi diesel engines - designed for customers who aspire to the sporty image of Ford’s ST models, but do not require the full performance delivered by optimised ST engines and chassis with sports technologies.
The Fiesta ST-Line features sporty exterior styling including unique alloy wheel, grille, front and rear bumper and side-skirt designs. The interior features sports seats, alloy pedals and a flat-bottomed steering wheel, while the driving experience is enhanced with sports suspension.
Also revealed was the stylish Fiesta Titanium, indicative of the high specification and quality that will be delivered to Fiesta customers across Europe. Higher specification Ford models accounted for nearly 60 per cent of sales in the first 10 months of 2016. Titanium models account for 48 per cent of Fiestas sold this year. Fiesta will also be available in Zetec and Style versions.
While no announcement has been made of the engine line-up for Ireland, the cutting-edge powertrains available include Ford’s multi-award winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine offering up to 140PS, and a 1.5-litre TDCi diesel offering 120PS – the first high-power diesel Fiesta powertrain. Ford anticipates CO2 emissions from 82g/km, supported by an all-new six-speed transmission with innovative friction reduction technologies.
Ford boasts the new generation Fiesta features a class-leading range of technologies to enhance comfort, convenience and safety. Advanced driver assistance technologies are supported by two cameras, three radars and 12 ultrasonic sensors, which in combination are able to monitor 360 degrees around the vehicle, and scan the road ahead up to a distance of 130 metres – more than the length of a football pitch.
The Fiesta is the first Ford to deliver an enhanced version of pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection that can detect people who are in or near the road ahead, or who may cross the vehicle’s path, using light from the Fiesta’s headlights at night.
Also offered for the first time on Fiesta is Ford’s active park assist with perpendicular parking, which helps drivers find suitable spaces and park hands?free nose-to-tail and side-by-side with other cars. Further enhanced for Fiesta, the technology for the first time can now apply the brakes if drivers do not respond to system guidance and proximity warnings while performing forward and reverse manoeuvres, and a collision with a parked car or obstacle to the front or rear is imminent.
Further features available for the first time on Fiesta and offering enhanced functionality include: Traffic Sign Recognition, and Auto High Beam.
The Fiesta is the first car in its segment in Europe to offer cross traffic alert, which warns drivers reversing out of a parking space of vehicles that may soon be crossing behind them. The feature is amongst 15 standard and optional Fiesta driver assistance technologies in total, including adaptive cruise control, adjustable speed limiter, blind spot information system, distance indication, driver alert, lane keeping aid, lane keeping alert and forward collision warning.
And there’s more…
At the same event Ford also revealed new research that underscores the potential for their self-driving vehicle technologies and announced testing of autonomous cars on European roads will begin next year. Continuing on the technology front, it also announced new cylinder deactivation technology for the the multi-award-winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost – an industry first for a three-cylinder engine
Ford also unveiled the exclusive new Ford Mustang Black Shadow Edition and Blue Edition models; the distinctive and sporty new Ford Transit custom black edition and sport series vans; and the new Ford Edge ST-Line sports utility vehicle (SUV ).
A Ford spokesman said it had delivered a new SUV line-up; set the performance car segment alight with the Focus RS and Ford Mustang; strengthened the backbone of its business with the award-winning commercial vehicle range; and re-written the rule book on compact engines with its 1.0-litre EcoBoost.