2011 Ford Fiesta: Love/Hate

Lhfiesta1
When I found out I'd have the Ford Fiesta hatchback for a weekend trip to western Michigan in which I'd have two passengers plus our luggage, I was skeptical we'd make it there in comfort. Would my friend in the front seat spend two hours with his suitcase in his lap? Would the person in the backseat need to be unfolded from an accordion position once we reached our destination?

Lhfieasta4

Although I wouldn't recommend this subcompact for a cross-country road trip with four adults, I can report we made it to our destination without a single passenger complaint. As long as you're not packing for more than a long weekend, the stylish hatchback handles gear with relative ease. But its surprising space wasn't what I liked best.

Love: Fuel economy

It was so nice to be able to set out from Chicago with half a tank of gas knowing I wouldn't have to scan highway exit signs for gas stations. If a hybrid car is out of your budget, the Fiesta's EPA-estimated combined mileage of 33 mpg would be a godsend for a daily commuter. I averaged about 34 mpg with mostly highway driving, but keep in mind the car was loaded down with three people and luggage.

Lhfiesta2

Hate: Automatic transmission in stop-and-go traffic

Hate might be too strong of a word in this case. The automatic transmission bothered me, but it wouldn't prevent me from purchasing a Fiesta or anything. The six-speed automatic is actually a dual-clutch transmission meaning it uses two clutches, instead of a manual's single clutch, for better fuel economy. For the majority of the drive, this transmission setup functioned beautifully. However, in the occasional traffic jam or while pulling out of a toll plaza, I'd depress the accelerator only to have the transmission lag a few beats while it clearly tried to figure out what gear it wanted to be in. The lag wasn't present when accelerating gradually, but don't expect to make any quick maneuvers from a standstill.

Cars.com Review: 2011 Ford Fiesta

By Amanda Wegrzyn | June 15, 2010 | Comments (29)

Comments 

jim

Thats it?

Peppy

EPA average of 33? Geez, I thought this would get closer to 40 combined. my 95 Neon 5-spd gets 35combined and it has some really high miles on it.

Tony

2004-2007 Accord makes 34-36 HWY

Paul

Backseat legroom looks like a joke.My 88 Dodge Aries wagon has a true MID SIZE rear seat,and 30+ mpg to boot.Who needs a new car?

skippydog

Many people have unrealistic expectations when it comes to modern small cars and fuel economy. People expect a smooth ride and to not feel like they are driving a tin can. They demand a powerful enough engine that they don't feel like they are piloting a lawnmower engine. And the government requires safety standards that didn't exist even 10 years ago. All these things add WEIGHT. There's a reason that a Honda civic from the 1980's gets 40 mpg or more. It's slow as hell, drives like crap, and isn't very safe. If you factor in the increase in weight, small cars are getting as good if not better mpg than ever.

Ford owner

The back seat is a JOKE!!! I've driven small cars before, but this is rediculous. The only people that will be able to drive this car comfortably are those of us that are UNDER 5 feet tall. I would buy a motorcycle before I would buy this piece of crap. The gas mileage is better on a motorcycle anyway, and I got more leg room.

P.S. Hey Ford, Bring back the Ranger. I can't afford the F-150. It costs too much in gas and I don't need a truck that big.

Paul

Reading these posts it became clear I accidentally stumbled upon the idiot board.

Allistar

@Paul
stupid is as stupid does....
welcome to the idiot bus, your the driver!

^^ *you're

-EPA average of 33 is still some of the best out there today, in terms of modern cars. Keep in mind it's an average; it's based off 55% city, 45% highway driving according to the EPA.
-Don't expect to fit >6' tall passengers in a subcompact.

George

You have to keep in mind that this is a dual DRY clutch transmission.
There is actually two clutches, whereas VW's wet clutches are clutch packs. There are many surfaces to dissipate heat when slipping, where a dry clutch has but one interface.

So VW can be very smooth (just remember to change fluid & filter) but there is a limit to how smooth a dry double clutch can be.
Maybe Ford will add a 7th gear?

NG

This is very disappointing. They took a highly thought of, snappy little european car, and dragged all the American (that means US) reviewers to Europe to try it and write it up for the American (that means US) public.

Then they yanked the manual (paddle shifters) out of the manual/automatic transmission, detuned it to reach an artificial goal of 40 mpg, and had a car that according to the review, doesn't go when you press the gas. (It's lost what, 2 seconds, in 0-60 from the european version.)

Then they made it in Mexico to sell as "made in America" (that means US.) I guess it is, sort of, but not as much as Toyotas or Hondas.

This reminds me of the way the PR flowed for the Ford Pinto.

I've put off buying my next car for months anticipating this, but I have to turn left from a stop against traffic every day.

Carfan

This is a great car! I think you should drive one before deciding what to buy.

Art

This was one of the worst car reviews I've ever read. The author obviously doesn't like cars.

john

Made in Mexico is the deal breaker for me. Cars slapped together in Mexico have lots of problems compared to identical models built in other countries.

When will they market an all electric car with a matched alternative energy recharging station.

No transmission problem with electric cars because electrics eliminate transmissions and many other troublesome high maintenance parts required in IC engine cars.

Matt

Actually I have had mine for 3 weeks now. I get about 42 miles to the gallon. My son is 6' tall and has no problem sitting in the back. It drives wonderful and is very smooth. I would recommend this car to anyone.

Jeff

I like how people who have never driven this car say things about it. How's about this, don't review something you have never driven or own. I just bought one and the car handles better than my BMW I used to have. I am also pulling off 35mpg with an average of 29mph driving. It's a very great little car.

Jim

Just bought a 2011 Fiesta with the powershift auto. On my 70 mile commute I averaged 45.7 mpg. Granted, its almost all turnpike. WOW!!! I have found that if I drive a little slower, say 62mph, the engine is barely turning, say 2200rpm, the car is totally silent, no engine noise, and you could go from cleveland to new york city and still have some fumes in the tank. I am in LOVE!

Joyce

I have 2011 ford fiesta with 4000 miles and it sometimes sounds like rocks in transmission area

Joe McFatter

Have owned 2011 Fiesta auto xmission two weeks and love it. I have been driving a 2002 Saturn VUE six cyl (which I am keeping)...so quite a change in feel etc. But I am 6'2" over 200# and seat is comfortable,mileage is close to 38 or so on highway trip. Of course, accel from standstill is as expected, but from about 20mph you can easily accel to merge. I think for the money it is has tremendous value.

kgr132

Thanks to those of you who actually OWN a Fiesta for you comments. As a potential buyer, I appreciate honest feedback.

CJ

I just bought a 2011 Ford Fiesta and have a problem with the AC dripping onto the floor mat on the passenger side. Has anyone else experienced this? The service area at the dealer said is must be condinsation. Not sure I agree. Other than that I really like the Fiesta, though a manual transmission would help with acceleration.

J-Beans

"Although I wouldn't recommend this subcompact for a cross-country road trip with four adults"
I did just that and I do not recommend it either. For performance, comfort fuel-efficiency, flashiness and value, I would.

Tim K

Well my Ford Fiesta had less then 1800 miles on it when the transmission started chattering while holding a steady traffic speed of 30 MPH after it warmed up. Now it does it bad between 30 and 55 MPH, still after it is warmed up. It’s nine with its cold. Also twice after putting 2900 miles on the car, the transmission would not release when trying to stop at a stop light. It drove me through a red light, TWICE. It was as if I was driving a manual transmission car and forgot to put the clutch in. Scared me to death, but I am forced to keep driving it. Took it to Kline Motors, a Ford dealership in Winfield KS. They said they worked on it for 2 hours and charged me over $175 and did absolutely NOTHING except tell me the transmission need replaced for $5200. For 2 hours work they did not even up-date the computer that drives the transmission. I bet they mechanic never even touched it. Ford will not cover it because the car was in a very minor fender bender and the title was marked rebuilder. What a cop out. What ticks me off about Kline’s is I told them I re-built the car, which was nothing more than a front bumper cover and AC lines for the most part and all the parts were OEM parts. I asked Kline’s to check the VIN to make sure Ford would cover it and they said it would still be covered to 36,000 miles. Why the car was flagged by the insurance company I have no idea, but Ford is sure using it as an excuse not to touch it.

In any case I got a piece of crap Ford Fiesta that I am scared to death to drive but for now am stuck with it every day, and every day wondering if it’s going to drive me through another intersection to get hit by someone. If I was Ford I would be scared to death with these cars on the road. This should be a safety issue and the NTSB should force them to make a re-call on them for safety reasons.

So, does anyone have any ideas on what parts I need to replace to fix this transmission? I sure can’t afford a new one at $5200. That is crazy.

Darren

I have a 2011 Ford Fiesta with just over 5K on it purchased new 4 mos ago..I am in love.
This car is so damn smooth on the highway, gets great fuel economy and is comfortable as ever to drive.
It's extremely snappy on the road and yes, the backseats would not be comfortable for a 6 hour journey if you were 6'8, but for the average adult they are just fine, let's be realistic, this is the "smallest" car that FORD makes and they have done a great job!

travis

by far the best car out on the market....to all the haters out their do your research and you will eat your words. It took me a long time to come over to the Fiesta side. The day finally came when my Eclipse died out on me and so began my research. For a long time I was held up on the Honda Fit but after a couple of test drives and some more research I finally went out and bought a Fiesta (and I wanted to buy American). Anybody that turns a wrench for a living will tell you why the transmission feels like its lagging and why that actually a good thing (longer life in your transmission vs the quicker acceleration with any other sub-compact) you may next address mpg and safety...You might think that an older (2000-2005) car with less safety features gets better mpg because of its less weight but again not true (believe it or not you actually lose more mpg in wind resistance than you do adding weight-that 200lbs extra of safety equipment thats added on to a new auto makes you lose less then 1mpg on average-however bad aeordynamics will cost you much more and with the new engine designes with fuel economy you'll just find that its not acurate like some others may say)some more questions you might have are space...Im 6'3" 220 and have alot more space than I ever did in my eclipse and with a 360 stearing wheel im not scrunched up and can actually completly strech out when I drive...never had that before add in all the other little perks and I was sold...and im not a Ford spokesman/salesman or connected to Ford in anyway. Hope this helps any other struggling American family out there on their decision

Brian Cruse

I bought a 2011 Ford Feista on Febuary 25, 2013 with 17,000 miles on it, & i've had nothing but problems with the transmission since i've gotten it.(jerky take offs, won't go in gear sometimes, & theres a chattering mechanical sound in the transmission, especially when the transmission downshifts when stopping. I've taken it back to the dealer 3 times im 3 months, & now it needs to go back again for the 4th time for the same problem. & took it back the 1st time @ 17,000 miles, & they ran test & said nothing was wrong. I took it back again @ 18,000 miles, I they replaced the cluthes in the transmission which didn't fixe the problem. so i called the Ford Company since the car is still under factory warranty & they said they would work with the dearler to see if they could help fix the problem. So i took it back to the dealer @ 19,000 miles & they replaced the transmission control module. 2 weeks later i'm having the same problems all over again. it's to the point to were i don't trust the car. if it's messing up @ 17,000 mile it's only going to get worst after my warranty runs out (60,000) & i'll be stuck paying the bill for a badly designed transmission. ie there anything i can do about this?I bought a 2011 Ford Feista on Febuary 25, 2013 with 17,000 miles on it, & i've had nothing but problems with the transmission since i've gotten it.(jerky take offs, won't go in gear sometimes, & theres a chattering mechanical sound in the transmission, especially when the transmission downshifts when stopping. I've taken it back to the dealer 3 times im 3 months, & now it needs to go back again for the 4th time for the same problem. & took it back the 1st time @ 17,000 miles, & they ran test & said nothing was wrong. I took it back again @ 18,000 miles, I they replaced the cluthes in the transmission which didn't fixe the problem. so i called the Ford Company since the car is still under factory warranty & they said they would work with the dearler to see if they could help fix the problem. So i took it back to the dealer @ 19,000 miles & they replaced the transmission control module. 2 weeks later i'm having the same problems all over again. it's to the point to were i don't trust the car. if it's messing up @ 17,000 mile it's only going to get worst after my warranty runs out (60,000) & i'll be stuck paying the bill for a badly designed transmission. ie there anything i can do about this?I bought a 2011 Ford Feista on Febuary 25, 2013 with 17,000 miles on it, & i've had nothing but problems with the transmission since i've gotten it.(jerky take offs, won't go in gear sometimes, & theres a chattering mechanical sound in the transmission, especially when the transmission downshifts when stopping. I've taken it back to the dealer 3 times im 3 months, & now it needs to go back again for the 4th time for the same problem. & took it back the 1st time @ 17,000 miles, & they ran test & said nothing was wrong. I took it back again @ 18,000 miles, I they replaced the cluthes in the transmission which didn't fixe the problem. so i called the Ford Company since the car is still under factory warranty & they said they would work with the dearler to see if they could help fix the problem. So i took it back to the dealer @ 19,000 miles & they replaced the transmission control module. 2 weeks later i'm having the same problems all over again. it's to the point to were i don't trust the car. if it's messing up @ 17,000 mile it's only going to get worst after my warranty runs out (60,000) & i'll be stuck paying the bill for a badly designed transmission. ie there anything i can do about this?*.txt

FeistyGoat

I just had my two year "anniversary"

I have a 2011 fiesta hatchback. I LOVED this car and everything about it. It was my pride and joy.

Not Anymore. In fact, I am scared to drive it. I don't want it.

I have had nothing but problems with the clutch/transmission for the last year. I am so sick and tired of getting this piece of crap towed to the dealership. I regret buying this car and personally, wouldn't recommend it to anyone!

Such heartache. As I type this, my car is sitting at the dealership and won't even get looked at for another two days. Sounds like they are over their heads with repairs. I wish I had seen all the reviews and problems before I purchased mine. Yes, I did spend the time to research, but I am finding more and more that I am not alone with the dangerous issues.

scarecrow

Test drove a fiesta manual with about 45,000 miles on it the other day. The lag on the throttle is horrible. The shifter clunks and clanks as you go through the gears. The engine sounds like it's gonna explode at 75 mph. It's a real POJ (piece of junk). If you must get one, get the new ECO-boost version. Eco boost is code for "we finally made a decent engine."

I rented a 2014 Fiesta in July and placed about 700 miles on it over the course of three days. In the next year, I'm going to be in the market for a new subcompact car and did pay particular attention to the car and if I could live with it day-to-day

I love the styling and the Euro-feel to the car. Although performance is not mind-boggling, it still felt sprightly and not underpowered. After driving Geo Metros and Ford Aspires years ago, this car was downright fast in comparison. The handling was precise and accurate, and the car gripped the road tenaciously on some mountain roads near Yosemite. It proved to be lots of fun. On a downhill freeway slope, the car creeped up to 90mph and it was still quiet and stable at that speed. And I averaged 45mpg on a flat 200 mile freeway run. Lastly, the car felt solid and there were some very nice upscale features.

But I am torn on the Fiesta...

The interior is tight, even by subcompact standards. I'm 6'4'' and my fiancé is the same height, and we just felt cramped, even in the front. The console is wide enough that our knees were continually rubbing against it, the door mounted cupholders protruded on the other leg, and the door mounted armrests didn't extend back far enough for our elbows to comfortably rest. The backseat has almost non-existent headroom and leg room is scarce as well. It would be tortuous for people my height, and I've ridden in the back of a number of small cars and have been comfortable. The dash design is quirky and some controls took getting used to, but they did become second nature after a few days. And the transmission- I personally would have a manual, but the rental's dual-clutch automatic was occasionally jerky and temperamental.

I was really torn on the Fiesta. I loved the driving experience and solid feel that is rare in this class. But it just felt so cramped and never let you forget you are in a small car; my fiancé's Aveo is actually more comfortable to be in on a long drive. I really want to like this car and buy it, but I think it would tire of it quickly

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