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July 01, 2009

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John Frewen-Lord

Hi Jim:

Here in the UK, we have the previous model Fiesta, and test drove a new one. As you say, lovely car, although expensive, compared with some Korean rivals. Let's hope that all the things you say in its migration west are taken on board by Ford (and that includes keeping the amber rear turn signals...)

Dave

We had the pleasure of renting a Ford Focus in Great Britain a few years back. Wow! What a great car. ZX5 style, with tight suspension, a simple but very accommodating interior and a 1.6L turbo diesel engine. The car was fast, turned in something like +40 mpg and was good looking to boot. Something Europeans seem to demand as well is front seats that have a greater range of adjustment than we get here in North America. I could not put the seat to the furthest rearmost setting, it was too far for my 6'4" legs to reach the peddles. If they sold that car in Canada, now, I'd buy it!

Robert

"fat-assed North American mushy". I like that...not the mushy part, the description!

Scott

Ford is the one Detroit automaker who now gets it. They have heard people asking for the European versions of their cars for years now so like you I hope they don't screw it up. I have driven Fords for years but ended up buying a Civic last year because you couldn't get Ford's best cars (European models) here in Canada.

Scott

Check out Top Gear's review:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_KIqdS1SO0

It's good for a laugh.

Brent Morton

Agreed. I'm excited about this car, and I've never owned a domestic-branded vehicle. But to get my money it needs to not be turned into just another Americanized Ford.

Here's one way we'll know that Ford has decided to maintain the Fiesta's European flair: if they keep the orange rear turn signals and don't replace them with red ones for our market. Saturn made this mistake with the Astra. Don't do it, Ford! I'd want people to know I'm driving a flashy European model, not one that's been dumbed-down for people who get confused by orange flashing lights on the rear of a vehicle.

Jim, have you seen Jeremy Clarkson's review of the Fiesta from Top Gear, including the assault on the beach? Priceless.

Jim Kenzie

Hi Scott:

I just wonder how Top Gear gets away with it?

I mean, what shopping centre in Canada would let you do that? And who pays for the damage to the Corvette?

No wonder the British PR types quake when Jeremy comes a-calling.

But you're right - it IS hilarious.

Jim Kenzie

Brian

I've spent too much time watching TV with the kids, but is it just me or does that centre stack look like a Transformers logo? That or something from Lilo and Stitch (the air vents are the ears).

Jim

Hi Brian:

It might be too that the kids designing cars these days grew up with those same toys and TV programs. Somebody better remind them who are the only people with enough money to buy cars these days...

Jim


Ryan Kershaw

Jim,

My girlfriend fell in love with the Mazda 2, but was disappointed to find out that they are not bringing that here. Since the Fiesta, is basically the same car I figured she would go for it, but she has a thing against Fords (yes, I tried explaining that the Euro-Spec ones are completely different). Any words of advice that you can give me to swing the argument? I figure its the perfect car for her.

Thanks,

Ryan

Jim

Hello Ryan:

Almost all Fords smaller than the Crown Vic are either Volvos or Mazdas underneath.

The Freestyle/500/Taurus/Taurus X are all based on a Volvo platform. The Fusion has previous-generation Mazda6 underpinnings, and even our Focus is closely-related to the brilliant previous-generation Mazda3.

All of these are pretty decent cars to drive. OK, except the latest version of our Focus which as I noted has been mushed up. But the original was excellent once they figured out how to build it properly.

We will have to wait for the Mexican-built Fiesta next year to know for sure how it runs, but at least it has excellent DNA.

And knowing the top development people at Ford these days, I am reasonably confident they'll do a good job.

But this might all be a moot point. According to a report filed from last April's New York Auto Show in the little newspaper down the street, Mazda Canada is in fact considering bringing the Mazda2 into Canada some time next year.

Last I spoke to the folks at Mazda Canada about this, that decision had not been formally made and/or announced.

Either way, we'll have to wait and see. Hope she's not in a huge hurry for new wheels.

Jim Kenzie

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