New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

The Ford Ka city car has been reborn as the Ford KA+, a five-door hatchback that will go on sale in October...

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Darren Moss
20 September 2016

The new Ford KA+, a budget rival for the likes of the Dacia Sandero, has been revealed. It will go on sale in the UK in October, with prices due to start from £8995.

What is it?

The current Ford Ka, a budget city car, is not rated highly by our road testers. In fact, despite its low price, we gave the car only a single star, as most of its rivals are far better.

Ford has now taken the decision to axe the Ka from its line-up and replace it with the new KA+. The five-door hatchback is about the same size as a Ford Fiesta - though is slightly taller.

Although the new KA+ has been been built in India, where it is sold under the Figo name, Ford says the car’s suspension has been specially tuned for Europe to give it a more comfortable ride.

Ford has been down this road before, with the EcoSport small SUV, and critical reaction to that car - especially in terms of ride quality and interior quality - is understood to have driven Ford to heavily revise the Figo for sale in Europe as the KA+.

New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

What engines can I choose from?

Buyers in the UK can only specify one engine, though it comes in two power outputs. The 1.2-litre petrol unit can be had in either 69bhp or 84bhp form, although only the higher-powered engine will be offered at launch.

A five-speed manual gearbox will be offered as standard. Both engines are claimed to offer CO2 emissions of 114g/km and return fuel economy of 56.5mpg.

New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

What equipment does it come with?

The KA+ will be offered in two trim levels: Style and Zetec.

The list of standard equipment for the KA+ includes six airbags, hill start assistance, an AM/FM radio with Bluetooth connectivity and a speed limiter.

Zetec models have Ford’s Sync voice-activated phone and audio system, a smartphone docking station, alloy wheels and air conditioning.

Buyers can also add optional extras including climate control, a leather steering wheel, cruise control, heated front seats, a DAB radio, rear parking sensors and heated door mirrors.

Ford says the KA+ has 270 litres of storage space inside - enough to accommodate two large suitcases. That's just 20 litres short of what the larger Fiesta offers, and split-folding rear seats increase the KA+'s boot space even more.

New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

How much does it cost?

With prices due to start at £8995, the new KA+ will be no more expensive than the old Ka, and around £4500 cheaper than the current Fiesta. That price also makes it only slightly more expensive than the Vauxhall Viva, which costs from £8595, and significantly cheaper than the £11,050 Fiat 500.

Ford expects most buyers to opt for the KA+ in 84bhp Zetec form, where it will cost £10,295.

New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

How good are its rivals?

Although Ford has in the past tried to distance itself from the budget end of the market, it has named low-cost cars like the Kia Rio and Dacia Sandero as key rivals for the new KA+.

There are also a number of other small cars operating in this crowded market - the Vauxhall Viva, Suzuki Celerio, Citroën C1, MG 3 and Peugeot 108 can all be counted among the new car’s rivals. To succeed, the new Ford KA+ must be practical and good to drive, while avoiding the quality pitfalls of the previous Ka.

New Ford KA+ to rival Vauxhall Viva and Dacia Sandero

Watch our review of the current Ford Ka in the video below.

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