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2013 Ford Fiesta Review

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2013 Ford Fiesta Expert Review

By

KBB Expert Rating: 7.3

The Ford Fiesta may be the only American sub-compact that can truly stand up to the Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris. Slick Eurostyle looks, impressive 29/39-mpg fuel economy and true fun-to-drive chassis tuning do the trick. But, in addition, the Fiesta loads on features unexpected in this class, including wild interior and exterior colors, a version of Ford's SYNC audio and communications system, electronic stability control, remote engine start and a dual-clutch automatic transmission. For 2013, the Ford Fiesta is available as a 4-door sedan and a 5-door hatchback, in S, SE and Titanium trim packages. Prices range from $13,995 for a base S Sedan to over $23,000 for a loaded Titanium Hatch. It's lots of car for the money.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a fuel-efficient small car, but you don't want to sacrifice the interior quality or modern features usually found only on larger, more expensive models, the 2013 Ford Fiesta sub-compact is an easy choice.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're all about room and high resale value, the Honda Fit trumps the Fiesta in both categories. And newer models such as the Hyundai Accent and Kia Rio offer many of the same qualities at a lower price.

KBB Expert Ratings

  • 7.3
  • 7.4
  • 6.6
  • 7.6
  • 6.7
  • 7.9
How It Ranks

#1

out of 3

Fuel Economy

#1

out of 3

Horsepower
View all rankings

Consumer Rating

7.8 out of 10
View all
consumer ratings
2013 Ford Fiesta Low/wide front photo What's New for 2013

More than the vehicle itself, the Ford Fiesta's order sheet has been revised for 2013 creating a new, more rational alignment of equipment and feature packages. There are now three distinct trim levels – S, SE and Titanium – each of which is available on both Sedan and Hatch body styles.

Driving the Fiesta
2013 Ford Fiesta Front angle view photo

Driving Impressions When the Fiesta was first introduced to the U.S., we expected Ford to water down the European version's excellent chassis. But, to our delight, the great road manners remained intact....

... On the highway, the Fiesta delivers a ride that is both comfortable and controlled. Push the car through a curving on-ramp or twisting back road and you'll enjoy its balance, response and communication. We're not big fans of electric power steering, which generally compromises driving feel, but the Fiesta's system is quite good. On the downside, the Fiesta's 120-hp 4-cylinder engine can feel a little weak. With the 5-speed manual transmission, you can keep the revs up and wring out fair acceleration, but the automatic – though a sophisticated dual-clutch design – lacks a manual-control option so you're at the mercy of the transmission computer for your fun and forward progress.

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

INTEGRATED BLIND-SPOT MIRRORS
Standard on the side mirrors of every 2013 Ford Fiesta are small, convex secondary mirrors that find cars hiding in those nebulous areas between peripheral vision and mirror coverage.

2013 Ford Fiesta Details
2013 Ford Fiesta Dashboard, center console, gear shifter view photo Interior

To find a reason to pick the Fiesta over its Asian competitors, look inside. Ford has done a masterful job with the Fiesta's interior styling and execution, offering a number of distinctive interior choices, such as white/black leather seating, contrasting piping and plum leather seating surfaces. Soft-touch materials are where you want them (armrest, console lid, steering wheel) and high-end options include heated front seats, push-button start and multi-color selectable ambient lighting. Navigation is not available, something most of its competitors offer, but between affordable accessory units and smart phones with GPS functions, this omission does not feel serious.

Exterior
2013 Ford Fiesta photo

The 2013 Ford Fiesta subcompact comes in 4-door sedan and 5-door hatchback versions. Both are functional and blessed with strong character lines, befitting the savvy young buyers Ford is after. The Hatch has been equipped and positioned as the primary model, which makes sense in this class. Thankfully, cheap-looking unpainted parts and ugly wheel covers are nowhere in sight; even the least-expensive Fiesta looks upscale. You can add sporty 17-inch aluminum wheels, keyless-entry keypads and a host of bright paint colors.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

A 2013 Ford Fiesta S sedan includes air conditioning, 4-speaker AM/FM sound system with auxiliary audio input jack, tilt/telescope steering wheel, a 5-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 limitations include 15-inch covered steel wheels, roll-'em-up manual crank windows and not even the option of SYNC or SIRIUS Satellite radio.

Optional Equipment

A fully-loaded 2013 Ford Fiesta Titanium includes a 6-speed automatic transmission, leather seats, moonroof, keyless entry and start, voice-controlled SYNC smart phone 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
2013 Ford Fiesta Engine photo

The 2013 Ford Fiesta's 4-cylinder engine is capable enough, but it's more notable for its fuel efficiency than its power. Transmission choices are a 5-speed manual and a 6-speed automatic, Ford's first dual-clutch transmission. Compared to a traditional automatic, the "PowerShift" unit delivers more direct engagement, faster shifts and greater fuel economy. To attain the much-hyped 40-mpg highway fuel-economy rating, you have to order the Super Fuel Economy (SFE) Package, which makes the car a bit more aerodynamic, a tad lighter and slightly less glued to the road thanks to harder mileage-maxing tires.

1.6-liter inline-4
120 horsepower @ 6,350 rpm
112 lb-ft of torque @ 5,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 29/39 mpg, 29/40 mpg (automatic w/SFE package)

The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Prices (MSRPs) of the 2013 Ford Fiesta lineup have an easy-to-remember progression: Base S Sedan, $13,995; S Hatch, $14,995; SE Sedan, $15,995, SE Hatch, $16,995; Titanium Sedan, $17,995; Titanium Hatch (wait for it!), $18,995. Loading on most every option in the book can have a Titanium Hatch topping $23,000. The 2013 Honda Fit, the Fiesta's most direct competitor, runs $16,000-$20,000, and generally does not include many desirable features available on the Fiesta (other than navigation, which the Fiesta does not offer). We expect kbb.com's Fair Purchase Price to reflect real-world transaction prices right around sticker price while the Fiesta remains a hot kid on the block. As for resale, we expect the Fiesta to maintain reasonable residual values, though not quite as strong as those of the proven Honda Fit.

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2013 Ford Fiesta Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.8
Out of 10

Based on 152 Ratings for the 2011 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.3/10
    Quality
    7.9/10
  • Reliability
    8.3/10
    Performance
    8.0/10
  • Comfort
    7.9/10
    Styling
    8.4/10

Horrible, clanky transmission

By on Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
2/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Nice to look at"

Cons: "Horrible transmission"

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

"The transmission in our Ford Fiesta has had multiple issues and still makes lots of noise and is jerky. Ford tells us that this transmission comes with some noise but the noises get worse as does the responses of shifting and accelerating. The latest issue is with the AUX button on the sound system which doesn't work anymore, and a scraping.noise when turning the wheel. We are scheduled yet again to have these things fixed but can't get in to the dealer service department until Aug. 11th......today is July 11th.....as they are completely booked due to other Ford recalls. We feel frustrated and stuck with this very poorly made vehicle because we would never in good conscience sell it to anyone and are pretty sure no one who drove it and heard it would want it. We will NEVER give Ford our business again. Beware of the Ford Fiesta......we are not the only ones having these issues."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Fun to drive, nimble handling and 41 mpg!

By on Saturday, July 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 42,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Handling, gas mileage and manual transmission."

Cons: "None yet - ask me in another 5 years."

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

"After 40 years of practical car shopping, I bought this used 2011 Fiesta on a whim. It looked sharp in the showroom, had all the bells and whistles and, most important to me, a manual tranny. Two years and 30K miles later I'm still really happy with the car! If I can get 150K with no serious maintenance, I'll consider this one of my best cars ever. The clutch and tranny feel just right - not quite snick-snack shifting but darn close. First gear could be a little longer, but after a quick shift into second the revs match up well with my needs. Available torque is impressive for the 1.6L, and the set up is perfect at highway speeds - no need to plan ahead or downshift for passes and lane changes. Handling is a strong point; the best I've had by far after a long line of typical sedans. Quick, nimble and predictable. Wonderful in the snow and with plenty of ground clearance, great for New England ski trips regardless of the weather. Gas mileage is a solid 41 mpg over the full two years. About 50-50 highway-city with just myself in the car. I'm recommending this car to all who ask me and will likely buy another in the future."

5 people out of 6 found this review helpful

So far I cannot complain- does everything needed.

By on Friday, July 18, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
5/10

Pros: "Gas mileage, SYNC funtion"

Cons: "The tranni ats weird for the first 5K miles until"

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

"I bought the 2014 model in Sept. '13 from Midway Ford. The interior is just as you would expect for any economy car so I cannot complain- you get what you pay for. However, I use the SYNC function all the time with my Kindle and the sound from the six speakers is terrific. The gas mileage is incredible: recently I drove 425 miles on one tank of gas (nearly all highway though) Its the perfect commuting car if you need a car to get to/from work and need something economical and that will get you from point A to B."

2 people out of 2 found this review helpful

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