Ford Fiesta Automatic full testdrive+ loads of images

Ford which debuted in india with the Escort was truly recognised when it launched the Ikon. Branded the Josh Machine the Ikon was a run-away success and was known for its ride and handling.

The American car maker then launched the Fiesta with a segment first common rail diesel engine. Despite being a very good car it never was a leader as far as sales are concerned. The cars like Mondeo and Escort never saw the light of the day and The Endeavour was a hit until Toyota launched its Fortuner.

Constant ups and downs and presence in few segments marred the company. Ford was also bad mouthed for exorbitant maintenance costs and poor service. Since then Ford has come a long way, introduction of the Figo coupled with reduction in spares parts and streamlining of service has made the Figo a run-away success.

Then came the Fiesta Global sedan, launched around a year back it dint sell as well as the it’s rivals. But Ford was quick to notice this and has launched cheaper variants, and added an automatic version to its armour as well.

The automatic is available only in petrol and is available in 2 variants namely Style and Titanium +. Though the rivals too have automatic variants what fiesta offers is a segment first dual-clutch transmission which is known for its lightning fast gearshifts.

What is impressive is it boasts of a mileage which is more than even the manual version. In a world were Automatics are known for their gas guzzling nature this indeed is a bold statement by Ford. It also offers features which are first in the segment, such as cruise control and voice command system and u can also fit Map my India GPS system as an accessory.

Ford is known for its driving Dynamics and coupled with the technology and features it offers this Fiesta Automatic seems really promising.  So how good is it?? Will it outperform its rivals?? Will this variant be the game changer for the Fiesta?? Our Goa team test drove the Titanium+ variant and did a comprehensive review of the car and here are the answers.


Ford Fiesta (Automatic) AT – Front View
Ford Fiesta (Automatic) AT – Rear View

The Fiesta styling is in line with the kinetic design theme of the rest of the Ford cars. The best possible results of the design are felt in the fiesta. The front end with its swept back headlamps and sculpted bonnet looks stunning.

Styling is sporty and gone are the conservative looks of the old fiesta. The blackened headlamps add a character to the car. The front of the car has a trapezoidal grille on the lower portion of the front bumper with the number plate embedded in it. Fords blue oval badge sits on a slate like intake. The circular fog lamps have a chrome finished surround.

The sporty design is carried forward to the side as well. There is a shoulder line which runs for the entire length of the car and fades away as it reaches the boot. The car has superb looking pronounced wheel arches and houses 15 inch 7 spoke alloy wheels.

The ORVMs are electrically foldable and have a turn indicator embedded into it. The blackened pillars along with the front and rear quarter glasses give the car a distinct look. There is also a chrome finished lower window sill. From the side, the rear of the car does look bulky and as a result the rear tyre looks smaller than it actually is.

The rear bumper is large and coupled with the high boot the rear looks a bit bulky and isn’t aesthetically pleasing to look at. The tail lamps though are finished well with embedded chrome borders but look a bit small. There are couple of nice touches like the chrome strip and the rear spoiler which are embedded into the tailgate. The exhaust tip is hidden under the car and is not visible from the rear. The rear bumper also houses the parking sensors.


Ford Fiesta (Automatic) AT – Driver Cockpit
Ford Fiesta (Automatic) AT - Co-Driver Cockpit

Step inside the car and you are greeted with interior design which looks like they are directly lifted from a car from the future. The Instrumental cluster is stunning looking and compromises of 2 hooded binnacles one each for speedo and tachometer respectively. The trip computer is housed on the top in between the two binnacles. It displays the drive mode and odometer reading.

In addition to this information like litres per hour, litres consumed per hundred kilometres, Avg speed, trip and distance to empty can be obtained in a sequential manner by pressing the trip button on the headlight stalk.

The central console is finished in silver plastic and looks sporty and contrasts well with the dark greyish interiors. The 3.5 inch high resolution multi information display (MID) sits right on top. All the buttons for different function including the music system sit just below the MID with the AC vents on both sides.

Ford Fiesta (Automatic) AT - Central Console

Central console contains buttons for CD, radio, aux, phone and menu on the left where as there is a numerical keypad on the right for the phone functions. In between them is the knob for the music system and up-down, right-left and select keys for navigating through the menu functions which are displayed on the MID.

The dials for the automatic climate control are neatly housed lower down on the dash. The leather wrapped steering wheel has controls for audio and cruise controls. The silver accents on the steering wheels and the silver borders around the circular air vents are in sync with the dashboard design and look good.

The door handles finished in silver looks upmarket and so do the door fabrics. The music system has Aux-in and USB support which are housed between the front 2 seat. The music system has 4 speakers housed in the 4 doors in addition there are 2 twitters which are placed adjacent to the door lever on the front doors and produces good sound quality.

The plastics used on the upper part of the dashboard are of good quality but the ones on the lower part are not so. The plastics on the silver central console are made up of hard plastics that can’t be called as high quality but nevertheless look good. There are some panel gaps and overall fit and finish is consistent. The built quality though is impressive the stalks and switches work with good precision, the doors shut with a solid thud and overall the car feels built to last.



 The front of the car feels airy as the windscreen falls far ahead of you. The front seats are very spacious and there is ample amount of head, knee and shoulder room. The front bucket seats are the best in class and offer good bolstering and overall comfort is top notch. The back and side support of front seat is unmatched in this class of car. The snug seats hold you during spirited cornering. The Seatbelts are height adjustable and add to the convenience factor.

Move to the rear and things change drastically but you don’t buy a fiesta that too automatic for its back seat, do you?? Even if you do happen to sit at the back you will notice that the Legroom and thigh support are in short supply. Width isn’t generous and sitting three abreast isn’t encouraged and there is no  rear AC vent either. But things are not as bad as it sounds the seats themselves are good with good cushioning and back support.

They are placed at a good height and visibility is good and you don’t feel claustrophobic, in-fact the rear feels quite airy and it can carry 2 people in good comfort as long as the front seats are not in the rear most position. Things aren’t bad but it’s just that this isn’t the best back seat of the lot and its best to look elsewhere if rear seat space is your main priority.

As far as storage space goes there is no reason to compliant. The front door pockets are generous and can hold a lot of stuff including full sized bottles. The glove-box has good space and also has a card holder in it. Then there is place ahead and behind the gear lever to store nick-nacks.

There are 3 large sized cup-holders and a bottle holder for the rear passengers in between the front seats. The rear centre arm rests also contains 2 cup holders. Then there are some smart additions for storage like the coin holder which is under the right side air vent, the net on the roof which can be used to keep your sunglasses or toll receipts and the storage box beneath the front passenger seat which can hold things which weigh up to 1kg.

The loading lip of the boot is a bit high so you will have to lift your luggage high to load it, other than that there are no complaints and the boot is generous and deep and will suffice on most occasions. And in case you do need more space the rear seats can be folded flat.


The Titanium variant costs 10.95 lakhs on road Goa and has the following features.

  • Two tone interiors
  • leather seats
  • Leather wrapped steering wheel with audio controls
  • Automatic Climate control
  • CD/MP3 player with AM/FM, USB and AUX-IN
  • Electrically adjustable ORVM
  • Electric boot release
  • Height adjustable driver seats and seat belts
  • Fuel computer
  • Alloy wheels
  • Engine immobilizer
  • Driver and passenger Airbag
  • Multi-information display (MID)
  •  voice command

Various functions such as AC, audio, phone functions can be activated by giving voice commands. All you have to do is press the voice command button on the turn indicator stalk and follow the instructions and give different voice commands to activate the desired function. Like if you want to turn on the music system then you have to press the voice command button and then say audio and so on for different functions.

  •  Bluetooth pairing: You can pair your cell phone and make and receive calls and SMS without touching your phone
  • Cruise control: It can be used at speeds above 30 kms/hr. All you have to do is press the ON button on the steering wheel and the car will maintain the present speed without you pressing the accelerator. The cruise control will be disengaged only if you press the brake pedal or by pressing the OFF button. Pressing the accelerator will accelerate the car but once you lift your foot from the accelerator the car will return to the pre-set speed. You can increase or decrease the speed via the +, – buttons on the steering wheel respectively without pressing the accelerator.
  • Guide me home: Once the ignition is switched off, you have to press the trip button on the stalk behind the steering wheel and the headlights turn on. They remain illuminated for two and half minutes after locking the car via the remote.
  • Remote programmable key entry with greeting lamps: The remote key can be programmed such that it opens only the driver’s door or all four doors. Also when you press the unlock button on the remote the lights illuminate.
  • Pull drift compensation

This features constantly monitors the road surface and makes imperceptible corrections to the steering wheel and counters the steering pull caused by crowned road and steady winds

  • Reverse parking sensors: Although the fiesta comes with reverse parking sensors there isn’t a display for the same. The parking sensor mechanism works quite well though, there are 3 sensors, one in the centre and 2 on each side housed in the rear bumper, the middle sensor starts buzzing if it spots an obstacle which is 150 centi-meters away from it and the other 2 are activated when the car is within 30 cm of the obstacle.


The Fiesta automatic is also available in another variant named style and costs around 10 lakhs on road Goa. The style variant gets most of the features of Titanium minus trip computer, USB connectivity for music system, Bluetooth pairing, electrically foldable ORVM, alloy wheels, voice control, leather seats and rear parking sensors.


The Fiesta automatic is powered by the same 1.5 TiVCT engine that does duty in the manual but it gets a segment first six-speed Dual-clutch transmission instead of usual torque converter.  One clutch engages the odd gears and the other engages the even gears.

The transmission gets a unique design and is sealed with low friction gear lubricant. Ford claims that the gearbox is maintenance free and does not require an Oil change for 10 years/2.4 lakh km. Slot the gear-lever into D and you get an instant surge of power and driving in the city is easy thanks to the driveable nature of the motor.

The gearshifts are very quick, smooth and there is no jerkiness during gearshifts. Up the pace and the midrange is a bit flat and the performance is not lightning quick but the engine revs well and offers excellent performance near the redline. The gearbox responds to the throttle inputs properly and always seems to selects the right gear for you.

Floor the throttle gently and the up shift happen early, power the throttle more enthusiastically and the gearbox downshifts and holds onto the gear for a longer time. On the highways extra ratio helps and the car cruises well.

If you want to have more fun then there is the L mode for you. In this mode the lowest gear remains engaged and up shift happens only at 6500rpm. The downshifts too are instantaneous.

This mode extracts maximum performance out of the car and driving it fast is real fun. In this mode you don’t feel the need for paddle shifters which are absent on this car. This mode though is not very usable in the first 2 gears where one feels that the gearbox holds on the gear for too long. Overall the gearbox does its job very well and is one of the best in business. The engine is very smooth and refined, there are no vibrations and noise levels are well suppressed.

To improve drivability Ford has offered 2 additional features. In D mode, when you lift your foot from the throttle the car falls into neutral, though this is good for fuel efficiency it is does not provide engine braking and is a disadvantage on steep declines.

To negate the disadvantage there is The Grade Assist feature which can be enabled by pressing a button on the gear lever. In Grade Assist the car maintains a constant speed by providing engine braking thus makes hill descends easier. The second feature is The Hill Launch Assist which holds the car steady after you lift your foot from the brake for 2 and half seconds permitting you to move your foot from the brake to the accelerator. This comes in handy during hill starts.




The Fiesta’s electric steering is not as feelsome as the older cars hydraulic steering, and the steering on the Fiat Linea is slightly better. Perhaps, this is the only place the Fiesta lags behind because the handling of the car is in a league of its own the rest of the handling bits are second to none. The leather-wrapped steering wheel is nice to hold and is confidence inspiring. The grip from the 195/60 R15 tyres is excellent, body control is superb and the steering is accurate and provides good feedback.

The car encourages cornering and due to its excellent handling you end up carrying much more speed into the corner than you normally would. Body roll is minimal and the car is stable at any speed and you always feel secure driving one and the snug seats always hold you in the right places. This automatic offers an L mode which is a nice touch and does justice to the dynamics of the car and every time you drive in this mode you are rewarded and a smile on your face is not an uncommon sight.

The driver’s seat is height adjustable, the steering adjusts for rake and visibility out of the front seats is good. The A pillar doesn’t obstruct the vision. The steering is light at low speed and thus pointing this car around town is easy. The rear visibility isn’t that good thanks to the high boot and small rear windscreen but The Fiesta comes with rear parking sensors and parking the car is not difficult.

If you thought the handling of the car is its best bit then better be ready to be surprised because the ride is even better. Low speed ride is excellent, most of the irregularities are filtered without you realising it and sharp bumps and expansion joints are dispatched in a very silent manner.

There is very little vertical movement and from the inside even the large bumps don’t feel like they are large enough to unsettle the car. Up the speed and what u get is a flat ride, undulations are absorbed well and even high speed bumps don’t unsettle the car. As a result the car feels stable at almost any speed and any surface.

Special mention should be made to the way the car isolates you. The wind noise, tyre noises are almost absent and the suspension is very silent on most occasions. The cabin is hushed and this makes u feel secure from the outside world and adds to the overall comfort level. The brakes are equipped with ABS and EBD have good stopping power and feel of the pedal is good. In case anything goes wrong Automatic version comes equipped with Electronic stability program (ESP) to prevent the car from slipping and to keep it on track.


The Automatic variant adds convenience to the Fiesta package and offers a stress free driving experience. It has some shortcomings, the rear seat is short on space and isn’t the best, some of you might not like the rear styling and the car is on the expensive side too. If rear seat is your top priority then it is best to look elsewhere but then automatics are meant for driving yourself right?? Look beyond these and what you get is an excellent car. The car is good looking and built quality is superb.

The exterior design is striking and the interiors are futuristic. It is loaded with features and some like the dual clutch transmission are the first in this segment. The engine is responsive adequately powerful and the gearshifts are smooth. This is by far the best driving car in its segment and the ride and handling is in a league of its own. Couple this with the good mileage the Fiesta offers and Ford definitely has a winner on its hands which will offer tough competition to its rivals.

Test Card Rating (Out of 10)

  • Safety-9
  • Build Quality & Strength-9
  • Ride-10
  • Handling-9
  • Value-8
  • Design-9
  • Performance-8
  • Refinement-9

Good bits:-  height adjustable seatbelts

                      Wiper speed for INT can be varied. 

                      Illuminated foot-well

                      Dead pedal is very convenient for an automatic.

Bad bits-   no display for parking sensors

                   No rear Ac vents



Length:                  4291 mm

Width:                    1722 mm

Height:                   1496 mm

Wheelbase:             2489 mm

Engine:                   4 cylinder in-line 16V DOHC

Power:                    109ps@6045rpm

Torque:                  140nm@4500rpm

Suspension front:    independent McPherson strut with coil springs &

                                Anti-roll bars

Suspension rear:     semi-independent twist beam with twin shock

                                Absorbers filled with gas and oil

Brakes front:           ventilated disc

Brakes rear:             drum

Tyre size:                 195/60 R15 (tubeless)

Boot space:               430 ltrs

Tank capacity:          43 ltrs