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It's right on the money; GILES BLAIR thinks that the performance and goodies on board make the Ford Fiesta ST-Line great value.

Byline: GILES BLAIR

FORD has a reputation for making cars that are fun to drive but don't break the bank to buy or run.

A fine example is the blue oval badge marque's five-door Fiesta ST-Line powered by a 140PS 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol engine that I've had on test recently.

This car looks good inside and out, has driving characteristics that will put a smile on your face and is priced from just PS18,890 on the road.

The sporty exterior and interior looks hint at the enjoyment that's just a push-start button away.

Highlights include the full ST-Line bodystyling kit, with a gloss black mesh grille, dynamic creases around the fog lights, larger rear spoiler, black rear diffuser and pronounced tailpipe.

In profile, you'll notice the rising beltline, sharp lines and Rock Metallic 17in five doublespoke alloy wheels.

The racy design cues continue inside, with a chunky, flatbottomed, perforated-leather steering wheel, carbon-fibreeffect trim, aluminium-topped leather gear stick, stainless steel sports pedals, black headlining and lashings of contrasting red stitching around the cabin.

Fire up the engine and step on the gas and there's a delightful rasp from the three-pot unit. The performance is not too shabby, either, with 62mph coming up in nine seconds flat and a top speed of 125mph.

Fuel economy officially averages 46.3 to 48.7mpg (and I got close to that on a run from Glasgow to St Andrews and back) and CO2 levels are 113g/km. The efficiency is enhanced by a very good stop/start system and an eco button that dampens accelerator response very effectively.

A big part of the fun, however, is provided by the sports-tuned suspension, which firms up the ride nicely. Add the slick gear changes, well-weighted steering and responsive brakes to the mix and you have a car that's engaging to drive.

And it is just as much at home zipping around town as it is out on the open road or motorway - the 140PS allowing for assured overtaking.

Generous levels of equipment and reasonably priced options are among Ford's many strengths these days and the ST-Line proves the point. It features the Ford SYNC infotainment system with an eight-inch touchscreen, DAB radio and Apple CarPlay, Android Auto as well as two USB sockets for smartphone connectivity.

It also includes an emergency assistance function to raise the alarm with the relevant services following an accident.

The test car came with a PS1000 upgrade that included a B&O surround-sound system, intelligent sat nav that takes into account traffic conditions, wi-fi for up to 10 devices, Bluetooth and voice control.

That is money well spent in my opinion and kept me on the right road and my family happy on our jaunt to Fife.

Other standard goodies include a very informative trip computer, auto lights and front fog lamps with cornering function, very effective manual air con and remote central locking.

Among the safety and driver aids are lane-keeping alert and assist, a speed limiter and hill start assist. Comfy cloth seats, good room for four adults and a 311-litre boot make the Fiesta ST-Line a practical proposition, too.

CAPTION(S):

3 GOOD FUN The Ford Fiesta ST-Line has bags of character and plenty of kit to keep all on board happy

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Aug 16, 2019
Words:545
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