Ford Fiesta

The Fiesta is a humble hatchback that’s as fun to drive as some sports cars thanks to its sharp handling and precise, well-weighted steering. Keen drivers will love its responsive, composed nature on demanding roads, but it’s the Fiesta’s ability to put a smile on your face on even the most mundane journey that’s most endearing. ST-Line versions of the Fiesta receive sports suspension with a lower ride height. This makes the Fiesta even more agile and grippy, which is great if you want hot hatch handling.

The 1.0 Ecoboost engines have been carried over from the previous Fiesta, and the 100 (99bhp) version remains our pick of the line-up. It’s a great engine that is peppy around town and comfortable on longer motorway trips. The sweet 125 (123bhp) version offers a step up in pace from the 100 – but ultimately isn’t quite worth the extra cost over the superb 100 – while the 138bhp version pulls eagerly from low revs yet loves to be revved beyond 6000rpm. There are also two 1.5-litre TDCi engines available, but you’ll have to do a seriously high mileage to justify a diesel in such a small car, especially given how frugal the 1.0-litre petrols are.

The Fiesta’s funky shape does compromise visibility slightly, with relatively small rear side windows hampering your over-the-shoulder view. Mind you, the high driving position gives a good view of the road ahead and the view out of junctions isn’t too restricted.A heated windscreen that can de-ice frost off the screen in moments is a major boon in winter and is standard on all trims apart from entry-level Style. Rear parking sensors are standard on all trim lines as part of the Ford deal with Motability, while a reversing camera is fitted to Titanium X, ST-Line X and Vignale trims. The 8 inch touchscreen that comes on Titanium models and above is bright and relatively simple to use, Zetec and ST-Line trims make do with a smaller 6.5in touchscreen that doesn’t have a built-in sat-nav (presently a free upgrade) All trims come with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, allowing you to tether your phone and control selected apps through the car’s touchscreen. The upgraded Bang & Olufsen sound system is seriously punchy and well worth considering if you love music. This comes as standard on B&O editions, while a glovebox-mounted CD player is optional on all Fiestas.

Our favourite trim, Zetec, is one rung up the ladder and brings alloy wheels, a heated windscreen, front fog lights, a smarter-looking interior and a much more advanced infotainment package. Titanium trim is also worth a look, adding cruise control, power-folding door mirrors, keyless start, automatic lights and wipers and sat-nav. ST-Line trim adds 17 inch alloys, stiffer sports suspension, figure-hugging seats and various sporty styling touches, including a body kit and a flat-bottomed steering wheel.

Stock cars only as the Fiesta is being updated, no Automatic cars this quarter. Vignale prices start at £495. Full Ford Prices

Summer Best Buy – Ford Fiesta ‘Titanium’ 1.0 100 hp petrol Manual  5 door –  Nil Advance Payment (£63.56 wpms)

Summer Best Buy – Ford Fiesta ‘ST line X’ 1.0 140 hp petrol Manual  5 door  –  £345 Advance Payment (£65.84 wpms)