Which used Ford Fiesta hatchback should I buy?
If you're looking at a pre-facelift Ford Fiesta, the 59bhp 1.25-litre petrol model is acceptable, although the 81bhp 1.25 is more usable and the better bet. For more performance try the 95bhp 1.4-litre, or the 118bhp 1.6 - which is particularly entertaining to drive.
Diesel engines include a 67bhp 1.4-litre and a 89bhp 1.6. We'd stick with the 1.4: it's powerful enough and slightly cheaper than the 1.6. The 1.6 is also available as an ultra-frugal Econetic version. These are worth looking for, even though used values are high.
However, if you can afford it, the later 1.0-litre petrol turbo is a more desirable option than any of these. A 1.0-litre 100 should be more than enough for most people, though if you fancy a bit of extra pep, the 125 is even more enjoyable.
Opt for Style trim over the sparsely equipped Studio and you'll get goodies such as electric front windows and remote central locking, but stretch to the Style+ and you'll be rewarded with air-con. Zetec models have all that you could reasonably want in a supermini, including alloys and traction control. Top-of-the-range Titanium, with automatic headlights and range-sensing wipers, was a popular choice, so you might be able to find one of these for a reasonable price.
The Fiesta comes with two types of suspension: standard and sports - with the sports found on Zetec models. All Fiestas are entertaining to drive and smooth out bumps well, but the Zetecs have the edge for fun.
Our favourite version: 1.0 100 Zetec