If you’re on the market for an economical car or hatchback, chances are you’ve at least heard of the Ford Fiesta or Focus. Both of these cars have historically been known for their affordable purchase prices and fuel economy, but you might be wondering if the latest models are up to snuff.
Well, wonder no longer. Driving Change did all the hard work and we have the scoop on these cars so you don’t have to do a ton of research. Keep reading to learn about the technology, design, fuel economy, and safety of the 2016 Ford Fiesta and the 2015 Ford Focus.
The 2016 Fiesta
Offered in a sedan or hatchback, the latest Fiesta comes with quite a lot of creature comforts you wouldn’t expect to find in such an affordable vehicle. The SYNC system comes standard, but you can also choose to have the latest generation of the technology: the voice-activated SYNC 3 system that lets you make and take phone calls, search and play music, and comes with a responsive LCD touch-screen. All this comes with standard AM/FM stereo, CD and MP3 player, six speakers, and 12 volt auxiliary jack, so one way or another you’ll be fully connected to your media. You can include other features like the navigation system, rear view camera, or push-button start. Plus, air conditioning comes standard on all models without having to purchase any upgrades, something that is (shockingly) still not standard on many economy cars today.
The Fiesta is actually a really attractive car, despite being the most affordable vehicle from the Ford lineup. Every model after the S comes in nine eye-catching, glossy colours that look as fun as they sound, like Blue Candy, Electric Spice, and Ruby Red—way beyond your standard white, grey, and black. The interiors of cars in this class are usually basic at best with cloth seats and all-weather floor mats if you’re lucky, but the Fiesta offers a decidedly sporty look and lots of soft-touch materials to enjoy and you can even get heated, leather-trimmed seating when you upgrade to the Titanium model. Aside from the design, the interior itself is pleasant and roomy, with a generous sized cabin so you can easily move around, adjust your seat, and avoid feeling boxed in, a luxury you often sacrifice in similar-sized cars.
The nice-looking design and advanced technology extras are definitely nice, but the most attractive feature of this car has to be the fact that the Fiesta is both economical and extremely fun to drive. You can get up to 6.6L/100 km for combined city and highway driving, yet its handling is quick and precise with all three of its peppy engines, making it good for both the morning commute and high-speed passes on the highway. The Fiesta also has impressive standard safety features to keep you safe, like AdvanceTrac Electronic Stability Control and Hill Launch Assist, Tire Pressure Monitoring System, and seven airbags.
Overall, the 2016 Fiesta is a nice little surprise. Even if you feel you want something more advanced, you should at least take a look at the Fiesta. You’ll probably be surprised by how much fun it is. Of course, if saving money is your primary concern, the Fiesta is an excellent choice because of its outstanding fuel economy and affordability, but you’ll still get spoiled by all the extra features you wouldn’t expect to get from a car so modestly priced.
The 2015 Focus
In 2015, the Focus got its first real refresh since 2012 with a sleeker cabin and redesigned fascias, hood, fenders, and tailgate. While it seems like carmakers are always trying to make their cars look sportier when they redesign them, the Focus seems to be going for a more adult look (and that isn’t a bad thing). The cabin feels more functional, easier to use, and quieter with a more modern look that most people would appreciate. The interior has a good amount of leg room with enough seating for five, so it’s a good option for people with kids.
The focus (pardon the pun) of this car is both on performance and fuel efficiency. The feature that Ford refers to as “overboost” helps to prolong your peak torque for up to 15 seconds and you can get up to 252 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque with the ST hatchback model. But even when you go with the base S model, you’re getting a very respectable 160 horsepower and 146 lb-ft of torque and while using just 7.7L/100 km for combined city and highway driving, giving you both performance and fuel economy that stands out from other cars in this class. Plus, you can also get the Focus in an electric model that takes 2.2L/100 km for combined city and highway driving while still managing the equivalent of 143 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. Whatever engine you end up with, you’ll definitely notice how manoeuvrable and lively the Focus is.
The Focus also lets you tack on a lot of driver assist features to take the stress out of your daily commute, like the Blind Spot Information System with Cross-Traffic Alert and Lane Keeping System. The Active Park Assist will appeal to anyone who dreads parallel parking by having the car virtually park itself after it finds the best parking spot. The Hill Launch Assist, Rear View Camera, AdvanceTrac Electronic Stability Control, and Tire Pressure Monitoring System are nice little bonuses that also happen to be standard.
The SYNC infotainment system with MyFord comes standard, but if you upgrade it to the MyFord Touch you get an 8” colour LCD touchscreen, voice-activated phone calls and text messages along with the optional voice-activated navigation. Another nifty feature that parents are sure to appreciate is the standard MyKey. This technology lets you program the two keys to control how the keyholder operates the car (e.g. how fast the car can go or how high the music volume can be), which is handy if you’re sharing your car with a teenager. Along with all the other standard safety features mentioned above, you get seven airbags, a rigid safety cage made from the same ultra-high strength steel that can be found in the Fiesta, and the SOS Post-Crash Alert System, that will turn on your hazard lights and sounds the horn after a collision.
The 2015 Focus is family-friendly with lots of safety features while being great for people on a budget. This car has the pizzazz for lots of stopping, accelerating, and manoeuvring in heavy traffic as well as the punch you need for energetic highway driving, all while reducing your trips to the gas station. With lots of models to choose from, including the Electric, the Focus is a versatile and affordable car that most people will enjoy.
Which Car Should I Choose?
Truth be told, both the Fiesta and the Focus are fun to drive, excellent on fuel, safe, and have more than enough standard and available features to keep you and your passengers happy and comfortable.
Choosing between these two will come down to your budget and lifestyle. If your main goal is to find a car that will get you from Point A to Point B without costing you a fortune in fuel, then your best choice is probably the Fiesta. If you want to save money, but want a little more horsepower and more technology features, like Active Park Assist or MyKey, then you should consider the Focus. Both of these vehicles give you lots of bang for your buck, so either way, you and your wallet will be happy with your purchase, no matter which car you choose.