Stuart Milne
9 May 2012

What is it?

Britain's road tax system doesn't reward drivers for choosing the most efficient car possible once below 100g/km. But the EU CO2 range emissions target means there's an incentive for car makers to eek out the last drops of carbon dioxide efficiency from their models. As Britain's best-selling car, the benefits of the greenest Fiesta having its emissions slashed are manifold.

The Fiesta Econetic now emits 87g/km, down from 95g/km and records an official 85.6mpg on the combined cycle. The previous Econetic covered 78.5mpg. The most obvious change is the introduction of automatic start-stop, the first Fiesta to have such a system.

The Fiesta has longer gear ratios for third, fourth and fifth gear with an unchanged final drive. The 1.6-litre TDCi engine has a redesigned injection system with improved eight hole injectors controlled by a more powerful engine management system. The air-conditioning, cooling fan and alternator are all more efficient than the outgoing model.

What's it like?

The result is an engine that feels much the same as the old car. Start up from cold is lumpy, and while vibration is absent, the four-cylinder's thrum is intrusive under load. It's a flexible engine, capable of pulling from fairly low engine speeds. There's enough kick to make untroubled motorway overtakes, but ultimate motorway efficiency and refinement is hampered by the lack of a sixth gear.

Acceleration takes a rather loud 12.9sec, and top speed is rated at 111mph.

Tall tyres aid a cosseting ride, despite the Econetic's lowered suspension, yet it remains the entertaining steer it ever was. It is proof that electric power steering can yield feel and engaging handling.

While we were unable to match the claimed 85.6mpg, a variety of roads harvested an easy 58mpg. A lighter throttle would have pushed above 60mpg with more possible once a few thousand miles are under its wheels.

Econetic models retain the low-roll resistance tyres and aerodynamic undershield and wheel deflectors. The interior is standard Fiesta fare - stylish and well built - and the driving position is as good as any in this class.

Should I buy one?

Like most of its rivals, the Fiesta Econetic isn't cheap to buy. The Edge Econetic is £14,445 - an increase of £300 - while the Titanium model tested costs £16,795.

That the Fiesta's peerless dynamics shine through on such an efficient model is why it remains our favourite supermini.

Ford Fiesta Titanium Econetic 1.6 8v TDCi

Price: £16,795; 0-62mph: 12.9sec; Top speed: 111mph; Economy: 85.6mpg; CO2: 87g/km; Kerbweight: 1100kg; Engine type, cc: 4cyl, 1560cc, turbodiesel; Power: 94bhp; Torque: 151lb ft; Gearbox: 5sp manual

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Join the debate

Comments
38

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Nearly £17,000 for a small car with features like a lumpy start-up and "four-cylinder's thrum is intrusive under load", no sixth gear and a 0-60 time touching on 13 seconds.

Yes it might save a couple of hundred pounds a year but it's costs big bucks in the first place so over 3 years at say 9000 miles a year you're have an inferior car which will cost about the same, maybe more, than a 1.4 Titanium.

 

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Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Undoubtedly good consumption figures in theory . Thing is unless you are doing more than12k miles a year its not worth the outlay .

I would be interested to know what sort of % of supermini drivers exceed 12k miles a year .

However the forthcoming 1 litre petrol 3 pot will be a much more economical proposition in the long run and may well be a much better driver with a lighter lump in the front .

This car would make much more sense in mainland Europe where diesel is much cheaper than petrol . I still havent "got" all the excuses for diesel being more expensive that petrol in the UK .

Anybody offer any enlightenment on that than we are being ripped off with diesel prices ?

Diesels are also far too complicated for their own good nowadays . Fine as a company car but as a 5 year old private buy much more risky because there is so much stuff to go expensively wrong .

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Given the base model Fiesta is £10,395, is it possible to add 60% value to the same basic car? Either one is under-priced and the other is over-priced, or, conversely, one is over-priced and the other is grossly over-priced

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Old Toad wrote:
Anybody offer any enlightenment on that than we are being ripped off with diesel prices ?

Simple really, market forces.

Since 1991 petrol sales in the UK have declined and diesel risen as has avtur.

Due to lack of profits in refining of petrol, diesel and avtur (for jet aircraft) in the UK the refineries in the UK have not been modernised to cope with the changes in demand. Middle Eastern and Asian refiners have built new more efficient refineries so some avtur and diesel is imported into the UK nowadays. Partly this has to do with UK legislation making owning a refinery a big legal risk, hence the major oil companies selling off their UK refineries. The UK refines too much petrol which is exported to the USA and not enough diesel so the price of diesel rises and petrol falls in comparison.

Most countries that have cheaper diesel prices tax it less than petrol.

As diesel contains about 10% more energy than petrol it would have to be currently 14p per litre more expensive to make the price equal in energy terms.

Although this Fiesta is nearly £3k more expensive than the 1.4 petrol version the combined consumption figures are 48 per gallon petrol and 78 diesel or 133 g/km to 87 g/km a huge difference. Ford, so far, are not putting the 1.0 litre 3 pot in the Fiesta, due to cost/complexity? There is little difference in the cost or complexity of a diesel like this and a direct injection turbo petrol engine, just look at VW's TSi engines.

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

This must be a depressing thing to drive around in - especially if you've shelled out so much money. Find it hard to look by the likes of the C1 that can be had for around £6k, at least they're good fun to drive. Not as if the fiesta really offers all that much more space anyway

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

sierra wrote:
Given the base model Fiesta is £10,395, is it possible to add 60% value to the same basic car? Either one is under-priced and the other is over-priced, or, conversely, one is over-priced and the other is grossly over-priced

Very true, but applies to a lot of cars, for example..

Audi A3 £17400 - £39950

Polo £9920 - £19950

5 series £30030 - £73040

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

rodenal wrote:
This must be a depressing thing to drive around in - especially if you've shelled out so much money. Find it hard to look by the likes of the C1 that can be had for around £6k

Yes on pure economic terms buying a car with a list price of £8k like the C1 makes this top of the range Fiesta look expensive. But it is really a lot bigger than a C1 but that depends if that matters to you. After all you can buy a C1 or similar with a list price starting at £8k, this Fiesta model from £15k up or a Chevy Volt/ Leaf for twice the price. The choice is huge and it is that which makes choosing your next car interesting.

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

They also charge £200 to have it in solid white!

Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Maxycat wrote:
Old Toad wrote:
Anybody offer any enlightenment on that than we are being ripped off with diesel prices ?

Although this Fiesta is nearly £3k more expensive than the 1.4 petrol version the combined consumption figures are 48 per gallon petrol and 78 diesel or 133 g/km to 87 g/km a huge difference. Ford, so far, are not putting the 1.0 litre 3 pot in the Fiesta, due to cost/complexity? There is little difference in the cost or complexity of a diesel like this and a direct injection turbo petrol engine, just look at VW's TSi engines.

Difference between 1.4 Titanium 5dr and this Version is £2,015 (£14,780 verses £16,795).

Above figures from Ford but the following is opinion. This car would get no where near to 78 mpg (review got 58) in the world whereas the petrol wouldn't be far of 48 mpg, my guess is 40 mpg.

 

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Re: Ford Fiesta 1.6 TDCi Titanium Econetic

2 years 10 weeks ago

Maxycat ,

Thanks for that I thought it was something to do with refining capacity/undercapacity but had no idea we as in the UK exported petrol overseas .

As you seem to know about fuel what the difference between Avtur and Avtag . Isnt Avtur basically refined paraffin ? I mean diesel is essentially 35 sec fuel oil isnt it .

I assume Avtur means aviation fuel for turbines ie jets but cant work Avtag out .

Sorry other readers if I have strayed off topic .

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Our Verdict

Ford Fiesta

The seventh-generation Ford Fiesta is the UK's best selling car, helped by frugal engines, handling verve and a big car feel

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