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All-New Ford Fiesta UK Launch Review
Andy Harris, Motoring and Property Editor
Let's start with some Fiesta facts:

4,500,000 Fiestas sold in the UK since 1976
1,000,000 of the outgoing model since 2008
120,000 in the last 12 months
Over 60 awards won since 2008
The UK best-selling car every year for the last 8 years

The original Mk I Fiesta was introduced back in 1976 with a starting price of £1,856. Mainstay of the range was a 40PS 1.0-litre engine which gave enough performance at the time to be competitive.

40 years later a l.0-litre engine is likely to be the pick of the all-new Mk VII version, though power is up somewhat (100 to 140PS).

Prices start at an affordable £12,715 for a 'Style' model, though making that choice limits the engine options to rather a old school 1.1-litre petrol or 1.5-litre diesel. Air conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity and a host of laudable safety features come as standard.

Also by Andy Harris...
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The UK's Best-Selling Car - Ford Fiesta Zetec On Test
Most buyers are likely to find a 'Zetec' model more to their liking, not least because the award winning EcoBoost engines are now available.

Other plus points of Zetec ownership include a host of appearance upgrades such as smart 8-spoke alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights, foglamps and some chrome addenda.

Also included is an alarm system, a Quickclear heated windscreen and Ford's SYNC 3 DAB Radio with 6.5" touchscreen (with Apple Car Play and Android Auto).

For an additional £300, the upgrade to the City Pack is recommended as this includes rear parking sensors and power fold door mirrors with puddle lights.

Next up the trim scale are Titanium models which boast cruise control, keyless start, satellite navigation and rain sensing wipers.

For those feeling flush, Titanium X will mark the spot with partial leather heated seats, powerful B & O sound system and keyless entry.

Spoilt for choice perhaps, but we are not done yet.

Those seeking a touch of Fiesta sportiness will be drawn to the ST-Line models (from £16,145). A unique ST-Line bodystyling kit sets the tone, with 17" alloy wheels and sports tuned suspension playing their part.

Inside sporty front seats and a flat bottomed steering wheel signal intent.

And if all that choice is not enough, top of the pile sits the luxurious Fiesta Vignale (from £19,345). A panoramic opening sunroof, Black Ruby leather seats and rear view camera are there to enjoy.

At the UK Media Launch, I concentrated my attention on the 1.0-litre Ecoboost model in Zetec trim. I'm told this is likely to be the most popular combination and from my time behind the wheel I can easily see why.

Tested in 100PS guise, the peppy engine delivers surprisingly brisk performance (0-62mph in 10.5 seconds) with enough urge for safe overtaking.

Up to 65.7mpg is promised for the combined economy cycle, with a little over 50mpg showing on the trip computer after my spell behind the wheel.

CO2 emissions dip just below 100g/km, enhancing this model's green credentials.

The new Fiesta sets new class standards for refinement ably demonstrated by a brief high speed blast where wind and road noise were noticeable by their absence. Engine noise is also well muted.

The Fiesta has long been the class leader for ride and handling and the new model doesn't disappoint. Road imperfections are dismissed with disdain and handling is exemplary, even without ST-Line tuned suspension.

A new suspension system must take some of the credit but this is aided by an electronic Torque Vectoring Control.

Joe Bakaj, Ford Product Development vice president said:

"A fun driving experience is central to Fiesta's appeal, and our all-new Fiesta remains true to the character that has delighted generations of drivers, with the sharpest, sportiest and most balanced performance yet."
He went on to add:

"Offering more style, more refinement, more technology, and more fun, Europe's favourite small car is more Fiesta than ever."

Your local Ford dealer can take your order for a new Fiesta now and the cars will be arriving in the showrooms shortly.

There is plenty of scope for personalisation and some vibrant new colours. I rather like the 'Bohai Bay Mint' of the test car, but of course more subtle hues are available.

With increased refinement, more equipment and superb driving manners, the new Fiesta looks set to continue its reign as the UK's best-selling car. Just as some of its rivals were closing the gap, Fiesta streaks ahead yet again and will continue to be a regular sight on our roads.

Fast Facts

All-new Ford Fiesta available to order now.
Prices start at £12,715.
Ford Options packages from £116 per month (Zetec model)
Low insurance grouping (from 2E)
4 new colours
Premium B & O sound system available
5,000 presold
75,000 configured on www.ford.co.uk
Range of frugal petrol engines
3 or 5 door options
Automatic gearbox available on certain models
Active Crossover model to come
200PS Fiesta ST will debut in 2018

All-New Ford Fiesta UK Launch Review, 13th July 2017, 13:00 PM