Ford Fiesta ST-2
Week ending May 27
Miles this week 145
You might imagine the ST would be just as practical as any other Fiesta, and in many respects you’d be right. It has the same-sized boot as any other model, for example, and once you’re inside, the same amount of space for those in the front and back.
However, unlike any other Fiesta, the ST isn’t available as a five-door, which is a bit annoying when you want to take a couple of mates to play golf – as I did last week. I’ve no idea why Ford offers the ST only in three-door guise, because it surely limits the car’s appeal. After all, two thirds of all Fiestas sold in the UK are five-door models.
Thankfully, you can add the height-adjustable boot floor as an option (for £75), and I wish custodian Euan Doig had been a little less stingy and done just that. Without this handy feature you’re always left with a big lip at the entrance and a chunky step to negotiate when the rear seats are folded, which makes carrying a set of golf clubs trickier than it need be.
By Will Nightingale
Week ending May 20
Miles this week 320
Safety is no laughing matter. Nope, very serious business it is indeed. Well, until you get a bunch of journalists with over-developed senses of ‘fun’ involved.
You see, when Ford delivers a press car, it always delivers it with two keys, as you’d get when buying a new car. This means there’s always a back-up for when keys go missing on photoshoots or end up in someone else’s pocket.
However, the fact that the Fiesta comes with the MyKey safety technology also opens up an avenue for office japesters, such as photographer Will Williams. This tech allows owners to tailor the car according to which of the two keys is in the car, so that when an inexperienced driver wants to use the car the key they use can be set to warn when the car is exceeding a set speed, limit the audio system’s volume, and stop the stability control being switched off.
However, when I was in a meeting, Will took it upon himself to ‘adjust’ some of the systems.
Later, I joined the M3, ready to put the foot down and turn up the tunes, only to be foiled. The stereo would only whisper at me, and the car began to bong as my speed crept past 60mph. Oh how I laughed.
However, this slower, more peaceful commute gave me time to appreciate the system at work, and I firmly believe it is a good safety advance. I remember when I was young and stupid, and I certainly did drive too quickly at times, usually with the stereo up too loud. I was simply fortunate that I never hit anything else back then.
With MyKey, driving like a fool isn’t really an option, and the stereo system is no longer a distraction. The result was that I arrived home only a minute or two later than I’d normally do, but much more relaxed, which can only be a safety benefit.
Now, all I need to do is figure out a way to wreak my revenge on Will.
By Euan Doig
Ford Fiesta ST-2
Week ending May 13
Miles this week 290
A few weeks ago I reported that the Fiesta had developed a clonk from the rear, and the USB was inoperative. Well, the car was booked into Gowrings Ford in Basingstoke, and a loan car was arranged (at a cost of £15).
I have to say, the experience provided by Gowrings was almost uniformly positive. I dropped off the Fiesta and was handed the keys to a 160-mile old Focus for my commute to work. Good start.
Come the end of the day I received a call saying the USB was inoperative because someone had broken it, so it wouldn't be covered by the warranty (and would cost £89). The clonk had so far proved elusive, too. I was asked if I would mind keeping the Focus for an extra day (at no extra charge) while the investigation continued.
Next day, the clonk was traced to the rear-seat backrest and repaired. I decided to book the car in again for the USB fix to be done while I waited.
Again, I turned up, but the staff had to apologise and re-book the car again because the part had yet to arrive.
I showed up for the third time and the car was repaired in about an hour. Everyone in the waiting area was given free coffee, too. Best of all, the bill was cut to £59 to compensate for the part failing to turn up the week before.
You can't really say much fairer than that; the car's been fixed, the bill was reduced, the courtesy car was fresh and the staff were professional and personable. All in all, a pretty good experience.
By Euan Doig
Ford Fiesta ST-2
Week ending May 6
Miles this week 98
Hopping into a few different cars every week can mean you end up taking certain technologies for
Take our Ford Fiesta ST, for example. In ST-2 trim, if forgoes some of the equipment present on our other long-term test cars, such as cruise control and automatic headlights.
I always forget about the latter, and on several occasions I’ve merrily jumped in the car and driven off without flicking on the lights. However, despite this occasional aberration (and fact that these things are always labelled as ‘convenience features’ by manufacturers), I reckon it's easy to live without them, and to save cash in the process.
Like our car, an ST-1 model has neither of these things. However, it's even cheaper at just £17,250, and we’ve found deals that bring the price down to less than £15,500. If I was buying, I’d look to spend as little as possible, and spend the money on fuel and track days.
Nonetheless, for those with a larger budget, the new ST-3 trim will be rather tempting. It adds keyless entry, sat-nav, cruise control, automatic lights and wipers and climate control to our favourite ST-2 trim for an extra £1000. Watch out for our review of the ST-3 model in June.
By Ed Callow