Our cars: Fiesta ST, Leon SC and Qashqai

Read the latest updates on the What Car? long-term test fleet. An office prank highlights the benefits of Ford’s MyKey technology, and we solve a mystery on the Leon SC...

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Ed Callow
21 May 2014 23:01 | Last updated: 14 Jun 2018 00:03

Every day, we take a look at a few of the cars that we are living with. Today, it's the turn of the Ford Fiesta ST, Seat Leon SC and Nissan Qashqai

Ford Fiesta ST

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

Read all of our updates on life with our Ford Fiesta ST.

In the car park

Content editor Tom Webster delves into the Seat Leon owners’ forums on the web, and almost immediately solves a mystery that had previously had him stumped.

Database editor Mark Pearson thinks the Nissan Qashqai’s cabin isn’t quite as spacious as he’d like - but he’s got no such complaints about the versatile boot space.

Read more about our long-term fleet.