The seventh generation Fiesta was previewed at a special event in Ford Europe’s Cologne plant in Germany ahead of the 2017 model’s roll out next year on the light hatchback’s 40th anniversary.
Shown in four five-door variants, including a crossover called Fiesta Active, the replacement for the ageing current model received an evolutionary styling update.
Ford confirmed that all Fiesta variants except the sporty European-built ST for this market will continue to come from Ford’s Rayong plant in Thailand.
This means that Australia is likely to share the American version of the Fiesta that, this time around, is set to be sourced from Thailand instead of Mexico (perhaps as the result of threats from POTA Donald Trump)?
The Thai-built car is unlikely to be significantly different in style and substance from the one shown in Europe.
Fiesta is not doing well in the showroom stakes, now ranked a lowly 10th in the important light-car market segment led by the Hyundai Accent (in Australia) and Mazda2.
It is expected that the new Fiesta will have the 1.0 liter three-cylinder turbo EcoBoost engine which will get cylinder deactivation in an industry first.
This technology can disengage or re-engage one of the cylinders in 14 milliseconds, which Ford says is “20 times faster than the blink of an eye”.
The company says it has come up with advanced solutions to counteract vibration, and that the deactivation operation “will be imperceptible to drivers in terms of operation and engine performance”.
Ford promises the expanded Fiesta range will offer more personalization options, following the trend set by European manufacturers such as Audi and Mini.