- Stiff body structure and low overall weight combine to deliver “light-but-solid” feel.
- Specially tuned Electric Power Assist Steering provides low-speed turning ease with firm control at highway speeds.
- Custom-engineered and tuned for regional customer preference.
- Exceptional noise and vibration dampening.
With an impressive history of packing advanced engineering and technology in economical compact cars, Ford has brought its small-vehicle expertise to bear with the newest Fiesta.
The Fiesta has inherited a tradition of excellence from Ford of Europe’s expert chassis development and attention to detail in vehicle handling and driver comfort. The Sports derivative also features a sports suspension.
Lean, green steering system
One of the factors behind the nimble steering is the application of the standard Electric Power Assist Steering (EPAS). EPAS reduces fuel consumption by activating only when steering assistance is required. Traditional power steering systems operate continuously, creating a drag on the engine.
The EPAS system features an additional pull-drift compensation which makes driving easier despite changes in road camber by monitoring the position of the front wheels. Continuous, imperceptible adjustments to the force of the steering wheel are made automatically to help control drift.
Global architecture – local understanding
Whether it is Germany, Spain, China or South Africa, Fiesta has the same chassis architecture. However, in Ford’s global engineering approach, new Fiestas around the world are configured and tuned to suit regional driving conditions based on customer preferences.
The engineering approach was to design a solid, proven base chassis architecture that would be appropriate for global markets yet could be readily tuned and adapted regionally.
Fiesta’s large diameter rear twist beam front stabiliser bar inspires confidence for the driver in virtually any road condition. Ford engineers also honed in on new bushings, spring and damper rates, that can be tailored for different regions. Harshness is also reduced through a larger twist-beam pivot bush that helps reduce road impacts felt by the driver.
Responsive handling – sophisticated ride
The new Fiesta offers a combination of sporty and responsive handling to adapt to road conditions and the driver’s mood. Automatic PowerShift models are equipped with standard Electronic Stability Program (ESP) which monitors vehicle speed, throttle and steering wheel position. When wheel slip is sensed, reduced engine torque and braking is engaged. Traction Control is also a standard feature on PowerShift models.
The ESP system was developed to reinforce Fiesta’s sporty driving characteristics. The system enhances stability through use of the anti-lock braking system during spirited driving maneuvers.
The Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) are standard in all Fiestas.
Also included on PowerShift models is Hill Hold and Hill Launch Assist (HLA). When the car stops on an incline, Hill Launch Assist applies and disengages the brakes as needed to keep the car still without having to use the handbrake, preventing the vehicle from rolling back. Brake pressure is maintained until the engine delivers enough torque to move the vehicle up the hill, providing improved driver confidence and comfort. The system works in forward or reverse gears. The gradient assist function on PowerShift models (located on the gear lever) can be activated when climbing steep gradients, allowing for improved drivability on hilly terrain.
Significantly reduced noise
Fiesta engineers focused on Noise, Vibration and Harshness (NVH), improving sound quality and minimising unwanted noise transmission.
To keep wind noise at an absolute minimum, all potential problem spots were assessed at the component level and then at the vehicle level and corrected before the first prototype was even built.
Using three-dimensional software tools during the development phase, engineers were able to pinpoint and correct any potential noise, vibration or harshness transmission through digital engineering.
This upfront work helped ensure that traditional NVH sound package elements fit correctly from the beginning. This led to vast improvements in Fiesta’s sealing system, resulting in a remarkably quiet interior.
Contributing to the quiet interior is the use of double door seals and fully encapsulated glass to isolate road noise.
Powertrain noise has been vastly reduced through Fiesta’s body structure design, with improved sound absorption and a secondary bulkhead that reduces cabin noise.