Car Review: Ford Fiesta ECOnetic 1.6 8V

I was expecting the Fiesta Econetic that arrived at Flush the Fashion to be green, I Just wasn’t expecting it to be so greeeeen.

Ford Fiesta ECOnetic

The Fiesta has come a long way since it was the car of hairdressers and woodwork teachers in the 80’s. The noughties Fiesta is less Shampoo and Set, more Optimus Prime and with its sleek styling and dynamic shape it cuts a striking figure on the road.

You may have guessed from the name, Ford have built the Econetic with a conscience. It has an emissions output of just 98g/km which is one of the best on the road, and it’s 1.6-litre, 94bhp Duratorq TDCi diesel engine is capable (potentially) of a whopping 76.3 miles to the gallon.

Here is where I could talk about Ford’s new electric power steering system, EPAS and it’s low-rolling-resistance tyres and lower suspension, (just some of the many ways Ford have tweaked things from a regular Fiesta), but you probably just want to know how it drives.

Ford Fiesta ECOneticThe good news is the Econetic doesn’t disappoint, it’s green, but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun. None of the modifications made to improve performance compromise the driving experience. It’s equally at home on the motorway as it is running around town. The responsive steering and lively throttle mean it zipped through the narrow lanes of Suffolk as eagerly as the kids queuing for ice creams at our destination in Southwold.

Inside there are some nifty features, a green light on the dash that will tell you the optimum time to change up a gear, (something I sometimes forget to do in 4th). The stereo sound is great and there are connections for USB devices and its seats are very comfy.

There was plenty of room for my 6ft 4 frame inside the 5 door version we tested and although the boot is not huge it has more space compared with other cars of this size. An extra feature on our model was a special heated instant clear windscreen, (luckily something we didn’t get a chance to test in a beautiful few days in April).

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Negatives are very few – the diesel growls in a low gear but it’s hardly noticeable further up the gear box, and for me the dashboard controls are a bit fussy with too many buttons. Personally I would have preferred a simpler interface.

With a price tag around the £13,000, (check Fords website for the latest deals), I can’t see why anyone would go for the regular Fiesta when this version is available.

seven out of 10With the Econetic Ford have raised the bar in terms of what a green car should be (and look like). It will be interesting to see what the competition come up with to compete.

Stop Press… look out for the 2012 Econetic to be unveiled at the Amsterdam Motor Show this week. New features include 6 speed gearbox, and aerodynamic improvements…