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2011 Ford Fiesta

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2011 Ford Fiesta Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.8

Have you heard the story about the domestic auto industry that kept claiming its products were as good as Japan's best? It's a twist on the tale of the boy who cried wolf. In Aesop's original, nobody believes the boy when things really do go bad. In our update, people are skeptical when things really do go good. That's the battle Ford faces in selling America on the most impressive, most recommendable, most buyable lineup a domestic automaker has offered in many drivers' lifetimes. Do we think the 2011 Ford Fiesta is as good as Japan's best in the category (the Honda Fit)? It's better. And if you don't believe us, blame the past practices of the domestic auto industry.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're searching the sub-compact segment for style, interior quality, driving dynamics and/or fuel efficiency, just put the 2011 Ford Fiesta at the top of your list and then try to beat it.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The Honda Fit is both roomier and more flexible than the Ford Fiesta, the Nissan Versa offers a softer ride and there are several competitors with lower sticker prices (although the Fiesta still compares favorably from a "you get what you pay for" perspective).

What's New for 2011

Two things everyone knows: (1) America can't make good small cars and (2) Americans don't like small cars. The 2011 Ford Fiesta is good enough to change both perception and reality.

Driving the Fiesta
Driving Impressions

Many months before we drove the first U.S.-spec Fiesta, Ford gave us a week behind the wheel of the European version. Some of us were impressed, others blown away, and...

... everyone shared the same sentiment: "I hope they don't ruin the U.S. version." Hallelujah, they didn't. The Fiesta is comfortable and quiet on the highway, fun when you work the wheel and just feels pricier and more substantial – more European, really – than any of its competitors. Shortcomings? The fun part requires a little planning because there's not a lot of juice available at the bottom of the rev range, we think the dual-clutch auto deserves a manual control option, and some of us have reservations about long-haul seat comfort. But when you're talking about the best car in the class, that's really just nitpicking.

SYNC
Ford's voice-controlled SYNC infotainment system continues to grow ever more robust and desirable.

Integrated Blind Spot Mirrors
In the upper, outside corner of the 2011 Ford Fiesta's side mirrors is a small secondary mirror that finds cars hiding in that nebulous area between peripheral vision and mirror coverage.

2011 Ford Fiesta Details
2011 Ford Fiesta photo Interior

The 2011 Ford Fiesta boasts not only the sharpest sheetmetal in the category, it also has the most stylish and refined interior. Soft-touch materials and top-notch design permeate all trims, and you can outfit the Fiesta with features like heated leather seats, push-button start and selectable seven-color ambient lighting. A navigation system is the only glaring omission from the Fiesta's options list and instrument panel, but a four-inch multifunction LCD display carries some of that load.

Exterior
2011 Ford Fiesta photo

The 2011 Ford Fiesta is available in two styles: four-door sedan and five-door hatchback. We're partial to the hatchback, which is the only style offered in Europe, but America still prefers sedans. Kudos to Ford for not crippling entry-priced Fiesta models with black bumpers and door handles and such; the 15-inch covered steel wheels are about as cheap as it gets, and the covers are decent. Still, the more you pay the better you look, and loaded models feature things like chrome-bezeled LED parking lamps and 17-inch aluminum wheels. Every 2011 Ford Fiesta comes with Ford's cool capless fuel filler.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

A 2011 Ford Fiesta S Sedan starts just under $14,000 and includes air conditioning, four-speaker AM/FM audio system with auxiliary audio input jack, four-way adjustable steering wheel, a five-speed manual transmission and the same fun suspension and powertrain found in every Fiesta. It also gets all the safety goodies, like electronic stability control and seven airbags – including the category's first driver's-side knee airbag. Base model shortcomings include 15-inch covered steel wheels, roll-'em-up windows and not even the option of SYNC or SIRIUS.

Optional Equipment

A fully loaded 2011 Ford Fiesta includes a six-speed automatic transmission, leather seats, moonroof, keyless entry and start, voice-controlled SYNC smartphone integration, steering wheel-mounted audio and cruise controls, heated seats, satellite radio and a trip computer. Step back five or 10 years, read that list again, and try to imagine the price – and badge – on such a car.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Ford Fiesta's four-cylinder engine is relatively smooth and strong, but it's more notable for its fuel efficiency than its power. Transmission choices include a five-speed manual and Ford's first dual-clutch automatic transmission. Compared to a traditional automatic, the six-speed "PowerShift" unit delivers more direct engagement, faster shifts and greater fuel economy. We're not big fans of electric power steering systems, which generally deliver better fuel economy at the expense of driving feel, but the Fiesta's qualifies as one of the less compromised units. To attain Ford's much-hyped 40 mpg highway fuel economy rating, you have to pay for the Super Fuel Economy (SFE) Package, which makes the car a bit more aerodynamic, a tad lighter and probably compromises handling to some degree, thanks to special mileage-maxing tires.

1.6-liter four-cylinder
120 horsepower @ 6,350 rpm
112 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 29/38 (manual), 30/38 (auto), 30/40 (auto w/SFE package),

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2011 Ford Fiesta Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.5
Out of 10

Based on 228 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.0/10
    Quality
    7.6/10
  • Reliability
    8.0/10
    Performance
    7.7/10
  • Comfort
    7.7/10
    Styling
    8.2/10

Great car for the price

By on Thursday, July 21, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 51,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "m"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I brought my fiesta 2 years ago with 10,000 miles on it and I haven't had any problems out of it. Mine is a 5 speed transmission and I get like 41 miles a gallon."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Rental Car

By on Friday, July 15, 2016

I don't own this car

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
6/10

Pros: "smooth ride, easy turn"

Cons: "uncomfortable seats, dreaded dashboard humps"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"This was the car that I received during a rental. It is a nice car, I will admit, however there are some things that could be desired. Driving is great in it - turns are very easy and smooth. Braking is a breeze, as long as you don't press down onto the break too hard. As for what could be desired, the seats are uncomfortable for me. I am used to the seats in the Nissan Versa that when I sit in this car, it is very stiff and rigid, and I am one of those who enjoys sitting up straight. Another thing that annoys me is the annoying dashboard humps. Seriously, when you are short, it doesn't matter how much you pump up your seat, it can make it rather hard to see. Yes, it adds to the appearance but its effectiveness is a no go."

Nice Car

By on Wednesday, July 13, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 95,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "great mpg, price, looks, ride, interior"

Cons: "shaky trans at low speed, feels like a manual"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My 2012 Fiesta sedan has 95K miles and has been a great commuter vehicle. Great mpg (between 35-47), comfortable ride, good looks, inexpensive, and roomy driver seat and trunk. I've only had 1 repair (recall) besides new brakes and tires."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

2014 SE Hatchback Manual w/ Ecoboost - Excellent

By on Sunday, July 10, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 24,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great Price, Excellent Commuter, Fun to Drive"

Cons: "Not fast, Mid quality Interior"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Owned this car for two years. Avg 39 mpg since purchase; includes stop and go Seattle rush hour traffic. Fun to drive and look at. This is an ideal car for the economical commuter, and for doing city trips where tight, nimble parking is required. It handles well in elements and we've taken it camping. Hatchback fits a surprising amount of stuff. Great to couple with a more utility vehicle if you're in a 2+ car household. Love the manual ecoboost; DO NOT recommend the automatic. I frequently travel for work (meaning I drive a lot of compacts), and the experience difference between the auto and the manual is jarring. I also appreciate that you can downgrade the sync system (i.e. not use MyFord Touch). I like the downgraded version a lot as it syncs well with my iPhone and isn't overpowering. Though it can be a little finicky. (I strongly dislike talking cars and computer screens in cars etc; they do not age well and I do not enjoy them) The comfort upgrade is nice, too. Warming seats, without an excessive price-tag or too many other unnecessary features (I'm a low feature guy)."

Good When New

By on Monday, June 27, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 78,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "steering, fuel economy, great subcompact"

Cons: "transmission"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"This car was my very car. I loved it when it had less miles. I took this car into several ford dealerships during the 36000 warranty for transmission problems. The car shutters really bad after you've driven it for a few miles in a day. It was pretty bad, the car felt like it was going to break down but luckily to this day it has not. There were several other issues that arose as the car aged. I had the radiator fan go out on me, one of the door latches went out, and lastly one of the speakers went out. The car handles beautifully though. This car has some of the best tuned steering I have ever driven. It stops fairly well, it handles, though it is a bit slow, it is pretty good considering it is a sub compact. In comparison to the rest of the subcompacts, I find the Fiesta to be the best. I would recommend this car to someone who wants something nice but is on a budget. I definitely recommend purchasing this car within warranty because of the little issues that have come up, the car has not depreciated very well either. Bought it in 2013 with 15k miles at about $15k and 3 years later the kbb value is less than half that (about $6k) I know that's somewhat expected though."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

completely hate this car!!!!!!

By on Saturday, June 4, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 65,498

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
1/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "nice looking car"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"I hate this car...Nothing but recalls since the day I bought it. The dealership was no help I had a warranty and was talked into another warranty that has been of zero help to me I have out of pocket spent over 500.00..... THE TMC Which is a recall has now been fixed twice in a year of me having this car. A waste of time if u have one get rid of it now...... More time in the shop then on the road....."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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