2011 Ford Fiesta
2011 Ford Fiesta. Click image to enlarge

Related articles on Autos
Gymkhana film will feature Fiesta
Buyer’s Guide: 2011 Ford Fiesta
Ford offers free options for Fiesta
Fiesta debuts at LA show
Fiesta to be tops in economy, safety
Fiesta vs. Fit/Yaris/Versa
Preview: 2011 Ford Fiesta
Fiesta to make cross country tour
Feature: 100 Years of Ford Global Cars
Fiesta topples Golf in Europe
One hundred Fiestas lent to trendsetters
Fiesta launches in China
Consumers to test Fiestas in U.S.
Fiesta – a taste of what’s to come
Fiesta wins UK award
Ford unveils Fiesta at Montreal
Fiesta production begins in China
Fiesta world premiere held in China
Fiesta enters volume production
Ultra-frugal Fiesta unveiled in UK
Fiesta to be built in Mexico in 2010
Motoring Memories: Ford Fiesta
Search Autos

Manufacturer’s web site
Ford Motor Company of Canada

Join Autos’s Facebook group
Follow Autos on Twitter

Review and photos by James Bergeron

Find this vehicle in Autos’s Classified Ads

Photo Gallery:
2011 Ford Fiesta

San Francisco, California – Home of the Giants and home for the North American launch of the new 2011 Ford Fiesta, San Francisco was the venue for what Ford hopes will be a giant hit and a big seller in North America, especially in Canada where the B-segment, better known as the subcompact car class, represents a significant portion of vehicle sales.

The much-previewed Fiesta is almost here and will be on sale at your local Ford dealership in June. Transplanted from Europe, the Fiesta will soon be followed by the new Focus. If the Fiesta is an example of what Ford is capable of, there will be good reason to get excited about the Focus as well.

The number-one selling car in Europe, and with over 750,000 Fiestas sold worldwide, the Fiesta has already proven itself in world markets and is now ready to prove itself in ours. Having had the chance to drive the European version of the Fiesta in August of last year I was pleased to learn first-hand that the North American version looks and drives almost identically to the European version. For once, a vehicle transplanted from Europe has not been “dumbed down” for our market.

2011 Ford Fiesta
2011 Ford Fiesta
2011 Ford Fiesta. Click image to enlarge

For the first time, the Fiesta will be available as both a four-door sedan and five-door hatch, and will be available in nine eye-popping colours. My personal favourite is Yellow Blaze, a striking tri-colour paint scheme.

Also available, for the first time in any Ford vehicle, is the company’s new six-speed Powershift automatic transmission, a dual-clutch gearbox that is a first for the class. This transmission can be compared to Volkswagen’s DSG, with lightning fast and smooth shifting. According to Ford, this transmission offers a nine per cent fuel consumption improvement over a classic torque converter automatic transmission.

Standard in the Fiesta is a 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine with Twin Independent Variable Camshaft Timing (Ti-VCT).  Ti-VCT gives variable — yet precise — control of valve overlap or the duration of time for which both intake and exhaust valves are simultaneously open.  This allows the engine to be downsized for fuel economy while continuously optimizing camshaft phasing for throttle response, performance and flexibility. The engine is rated at 120 horsepower and 112 lb.-ft. of torque. A five-speed manual transmission is standard and the optional six-speed Powershift automatic is available for $1,250.

2011 Ford Fiesta
2011 Ford Fiesta. Click image to enlarge

The Fiesta’s Canadian pricing is competitive with its import competitors, and its starting price is actually lower than that of the Fiesta south of the border, starting at $12,999 for the four-door S model. The S model is Canada’s “stripper” model and is expected to be a low-volume seller, but it still comes with an impressive list of standard features such as seven airbags, including a drivers knee airbag, anti-lock brakes and electronic stability control, and tilt and telescopic steering wheel.

The SE models – $16,099 (four-door) and $16,799 (five-door) – are where things get interesting, with standard features such as air conditioning, power mirrors and door locks with keyless entry, and exterior mirrors with turn signal repeaters. The SES model (five-door, $18,899) and SEL model (four-door, $18,199) add class-exclusive features such as push-button start, heated leather seats, LED driving lamps, Sync Bluetooth connectivity audio system and optional moonroof ($1,200).

2011 Ford Fiesta
2011 Ford Fiesta. Click image to enlarge

The Winter Package adds heated seats and heated mirrors for $350 and a block heater is another $80. Also available is a “Super Fuel Economy” model which adds side air deflectors, blockers on the lower grille, cruise control, and a steel spare for $500.

Having previously driven the Fiesta’s competitors, as well has having driven them back to back with the Fiesta during my stay in California, at the time of this writing I will make the bold statement that the Ford Fiesta will be the best subcompact vehicle available in Canada – Ford will not have a hard time moving these off of their lots.

Connect with Autos.ca