The Fun and Green Compact Fords

I’m as environment conscious as the next person. When it comes to my garage, I keep it updated so that I won’t have to feel ashamed to take a friend in the EPA over for dinner. And I definitely wouldn’t be ashamed of the Ford Fiesta in my garage, though it doesn’t match the efficiency of the Fiesta ECOnetic that was sadly axed last year. Nor would I trade the Focus 2012 for a Chevrolet Camaro, no matter how that car may be fun to drive.

The Fiesta and Focus are also terribly feisty – they come with an array of impressive features and technologies that gives their small car status a boost into smartcar territory, if there were such a term. Here’s a look at what make these cars so fuel efficient and equally fun to drive.

Green engines
The Ford Fiesta comes with a highly impressive series of powertrain options. At the core of this car’s fuel efficiency is its sweet 1.0 litre EcoBoost engine. This patented Ford engine manages to deliver a minimum of a whopping 40 miles per gallon or 17 km a litre, giving its peers a run for each of their litres.

This is not as much as the Fiesta ECOnetic (which gave as much as 30 – 34 km/litre) but it’s good enough. The engine may be small, which is great when you think of what you save at the petrol station. It’s also fundamental to Ford’s green technology – the engine offers fuel economy gains by as much as 20 percent, and reduces CO2 emissions by up to 15 percent. It’s also packs power in its diminutive size – it offers 123 hm per litre of displacement. All this is great news for green geeks like me.

The Focus has a 2 litre GDI that is not far behind with its 14.3 km/litre (in city traffic) to 15.3 km/litre (highway) efficiencies. I love the fact that even in the city I managed to go over the slated city estimate of 11 km/litre.

Fun Features

The Fiesta also has a smart array of in-cabin technologies that makes driving fun. The MyFord Touch system offers voice control and plenty of navigation options, and I love the fact that I can connect with several of my smartphone apps even while I’m driving, simply with voice commands. This is the old SYNC AppLink technology of the old Fiesta, and I love that it’s still around. This makes it easier to turn on my Pandora radio on my Blackberry with my eyes on the road, or turn on Scout to help me navigate to unfamiliar places.

The Focus also has its MyFord Touch system with its 8 inch screen. It’s not the best touchscreen in the world, but I can still get the weather and my in-cabin entertainment options with a touch of my finger. The voice recognition system is quite accurate as Ford promises, though it takes more than one or two interactions to get the guidance started in the first place.

Nevertheless, both the Fiesta and the Ford please in two important aspects of car design. These are the elements that make a car fun to drive – great features and fuel efficiency. I look forward to more such perfect mergers of the two in Ford’s future offerings.

Josh White is a dealer of used cars in Sydney. Ironically, he personally likes using new cars and has test driven a couple of new utes to see if they deserve space in his garage.

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