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Rating 8 8

2009 Ford Classic 1.4 diesel review, test drive

7th Dec 2009 8:00 am

The Fiesta Classic, at an ex-showroom tag of Rs 9.54 On Road Mumbai, offers reasonable value for money.

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  • Make : Ford
  • Model : Classic

The Fiesta whose design spells S-A-F-E doesn’t break new ground but it has a confident stance that gives it a purposeful look. The Fiesta’s front end with its large grille, striking headlights and an aggressive-looking bumper is the best looking part while the side view is disappointingly plain. The Fiesta’s overall proportions and bulk makes it look larger than it actually is and also accentuates the skinny 175/65R14s on which it sits.

Like the vast majority of cars today, the Fiesta diesel is front-wheel drive and uses Macpherson coil over damper struts to suspend the front wheels, anti-roll bar, and rack and pinion steering system. Ford’s tailor-made for India springs have large diameters that are better suited for our roads. The steering rack is mounted on the cross member for greater steering accuracy, and twin tube shock absorbers have been called in for improved durability. The Fiesta uses a disc /drum brake combo, and has an (optional) anti-lock system.

The Fiesta’s cabin is of a solid, workmanlike nature but the interior colours look dreary though the finish is decent. It also gets adjustable seat-height and a steering-wheel, which tilts up or down.
The Fiesta’s seats are comfy and supportive too, especially on long drives.The dash is dominated by its flat panel console and four porthole-like vents, which shut tight and can be swiveled in any direction.

A nice set of Skoda Octavia-ish, clear white-on-black dials, grippy steering wheel, expensive handbrake lever and clever door pads with door mounted speakers complete the feel-good effect. Ford has focused that extra bit on storage and there’s loads of practical niches all around, including a sizeable rear parcel shelf.

You can comfortably place more than one cell phone in the slot ahead of the gear lever, there is a storage cavity under the handbrake, a useful recess built into the top of the dash, huge door pockets that can swallow even large size bottles, rear door pockets and expandable cup holders between the seats. Ford is proud of the little recess in the centre of the dashboard sill, which it calls an idol stowage area. Ford also has a flip down rear seat, which increases bootspace and practicality.
 

Ford is known for its  driving dynamics. Cars like the Mondeo, Focus and even our home-grown Ikon are living, rolling proof of this outstanding ability and know-how. And the Fiesta, fine-tuned to Indian tastes, is no different. Now keen to appeal to a wider customer base, the car has been tuned to erase every bump and broken patch Indian roads can throw at it. And the taller springs and tuned dampers have the desired effect.

The ride quality over poor sections of the road is simply superb. The Fiesta blots out most road noise over poor sections, the severity of the bumps and pitching is greatly reduced and most importantly, this has been done without the suspension getting floaty.
The Fiesta is also extremely accomplished at low speeds, a crucial attribute in our driving environment. And the best part is that low speed ride does not compromise high-speed stability.
  
You can turn the Fiesta into a corner with more confidence, assured in the knowledge that it will provide enough feedback to allow you to carry the speed out of the corner without losing any hair. But it’s no Ikon. Not keen on snappy changes in direction and with no running commentary on the state of grip on the front wheels, the Fiesta’s ride-centric set-up means this car is nowhere near as entertaining to drive as the Ikon.
 

2009 Ford Classic 1.4 diesel review, test drive
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