Ford’s new Active Fiesta promises rugged styling and enhanced versatility but does it deliver? Aimee Woods went to the South of France to find out
What is it? The new addition to the Fiesta gang is a crossover, the Fiesta Active. Hard to imagine the Fiesta in SUV style isn’t it? Well, it still hasn’t gone whole hog as this really couldn’t be likened to your typical SUV. That said, it has differing features to the regular Fiesta and adds some bulk which will appeal to a particular market even with a 1.0 litre engine.
First Impressions of the Ford Fiesta Active? The SUV crossover look means it stands out from the regular Fiesta with the addition of dark plastic cladding starting from the bumper, wraps around the wheel arches all the way around the rear. You will immediately notice the ride height has been increased by 18mm Fiesta Active and roof rails give it that rugged feel. The addition of the roof rails are to cater for its target audience – those with active lifestyles who don’t require all the bulk of the typical SUV. And for those who want to stand out in the carpark it is available in Lux Yellow, Ruby Red and Blue Wave.
What about the interior? You will be instantly drawn to the new sport seats (with lumbar support) with coloured stitching, lining the middle with the “A” logo. It has a leather steering wheel and gear stick and satin aluminium detailing adding a touch of class. The 17” alloys add strength to the exterior also. Ford have stated that to stick with its theme of the active lifestyle, their fabric and materials have been rigorously tested to ensure that they are durable and resistant to cope with the demands of all that an active lifestyle brings. The boot space isn’t overly impressive for a crossover at 311 litres or 1093 with the seats down.
On the Road? The increased ride height of the Fiesta Active definitely makes for a smooth and capable drive. It is confident in the corners without the roll of an SUV and cruises along happily on the motorways. The only model available in the Irish market is the 1.0 litre three cylinder engine with 100bhp, a maximum speed of 181km/h, 0-100km/h in 11 seconds and produces 170Nm of torque. With an Ecoboost petrol engine, it is a good all-rounder and fuel efficient. With the optimised front shock absorbers featuring a new hydraulic rebound stopper, it handles bumps, potholes and rough ground without any difficulty.
Three driving modes are available – Normal, Eco and Slippery. Eco mode adjusts the throttle settings to save fuel if the driver wishes. Around the sunny and dry roads of Nice, we weren’t able to check out the effects of slippery mode. Ford claims that this adjusts the ESC and traction control settings for increased grip in snow, ice and rain. This is a feature that should go down well with the Irish, particularly the less confident drivers.
The purpose of the crossover is to handle tough and smooth terrain without a 4 wheel drive system and maintain the fun Fiesta feel which it absolutely achieves. Don’t be fooled though – off-roading is not what this is built for.
How safe? The Fiesta Active has a comprehensive range of driver assistance technology including : Adaptive cruise control, auto high beam, blind spot information system, forward collision warning, rear parking aid/camera, lane keeping alert systems and pre-collision assist for pedestrians.
How much? The only available model to the Irish market starts at €21,900 – reasonable for a crossover but expensive for a Fiesta.
3 words to describe the Ford Fiesta Active? Sturdy, smooth and safe.
13th June, 2018