First DriveA rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
First DriveAppealing little Ford gets a red interior, but canvas roof and disappointing engine hurt its appeal.
The diminutive Ka is getting a little long in the tooth, so with no replacement imminent, Ford is addressing a few of its more dated aspects rather than investing in a major overhaul. Chief among the changes is a new dashboard. The curvy instrument binnacle and centre console remain, but they are now backed by a revised moulding that better incorporates the (optional) passenger airbag and a more upmarket finish. But of more interest is the replacement of the near-useless roll-top storage bin with a decent oddments shelf and a three-litre glovebox that – finally – fits the owner’s manual.The Luxury and SportKa versions get variable intermittent wipers and a rear wiper that comes on when reverse gear is selected in the rain, and the SportKa also gets tinted rear windows. But for basic models the changes are even more limited. This Collection version came with new – and rather plain – cloth trim and a fresh design of optional (£400) six-spoke alloy wheels. Prices remain the same across the range.The drive is unchanged and is none the worse for it. The ride feels a little lumpy compared to some newer rivals’, but there’s no faulting the sharp steering, quick gearchange and agile chassis.With 46,000 sales last year, the Ka doesn’t need much help finding buyers, but at least now those buyers will have somewhere safe to put their gloves.Alastair Clements