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Discussion Starter #1
Came across this Fiesta review from a blogger who visited the LAX show.

Also includes some video clips as well. Quite a good review and brings up some negatives, but overall positive experience.

EG:
One niggling detail which sticks out in my mind in spite of all the aspects of the car that Ford got right: the Braille-like texture applied to the hard plastic door panels and dash.

The trunk of the sedan model opens and closes on old, cargo crushing, pivoting arms instead of articulated hinges.

I was quite pleased to learn that Ford had a US spec Fiesta sitting outside the LA convention center that I could take for a brief drive in the surrounding area.

The driving position that I settled on after getting into the bright green party on wheels felt relaxed and comfortable, but definitely needed some additional lumbar support. I can’t recall if there’s an option for adjustable lumbar support but, if there isn’t, there should be.

I really only have two complaints about the driving experience and one can be solved simply by stiffening up the suspension a bit. The other complaint, however, involves a little more tinkering to correct, and is the same complaint I have about newer Volkswagens: the electric assist steering.

CCT Blog: Cars, Computers, & Things: 2011 Ford Fiesta: First Impressions and a Drive
 

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I am very shocked Ford had a US Spec Fiesta ready for test drives. There were only a few (2-3) cars on display that were actually US Spec. I would be shocked if they left one of those outside for people to drive. Without pictures for proof, I would guess it was a EU spec car.
 

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Nice review. The interior materials, with the braille texture, are lifted straight from the European car by the looks of it - it's an interesting texture IMO but as I haven't sat in a Fiesta yet I don't know whether that's a good or a bad thing. Also I thought the Fiesta had a soft-touch dash? Ford's PR says so as do other reviews from the show.

European road tests complained about the steering feel, too, so this is no surprise to me at all...electric power steering is here to stay, but hopefully over time carmakers will figure out ways to make it feel more natural.
 

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The US car does have the soft touch dash. I am not sure if it is as soft and rubbery as the EU car, but it is surely not hard! Logging almost 12,000 miles with the EPAS in the Fiesta, I find it to be outstanding. Turn-in is very crisp, good feel at all speeds, great feed back. There is simply no lag from when the wheel is turned and the car changes directions. Also not sure what the complaint was about the suspension. Some agents said it was way too stiff, and others thought it was not stiff enough. I found it to be good for normal street use, but would have liked a little more stiffness at all corners for track use. Since I am planning on driving my Fiesta 90% Michigan roads and 10% track, I will live with a softer suspension and not deal with losing fillings over bumps. Over the years I have modified a ton of suspensions, and while they work great on a glass smooth track, they suck for the street. The Fiesta is a great balance.
 

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From what I understand it the Fiesta (in EU spec anyway) is pretty softly sprung, but thanks to Ford's engineering talents it still handles wonderfully. The same thing seems to be the case with the Mk1 Focus, and I imagine it will be the same with the US car. Some might want a stiffer ride, but I'll be ok with a softish one as long as the handling is still great.
 

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The third video; the walk around the car -- did you see the cut-out car next? You could see the front bumper structure hidden behind the plastic. It explains why the car has a different lower grille than the EU one!

Also I find it funny that the shape of the headlights and the rear reflectors are the same as the EU car. Hence the deeper .. erm.. ya know.
(it's past midnight and english isn't my native tongue and... good night!)
 

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The one video said the Dash was hard plastic.
Yeah but many other sources say it's soft. The texture looks the same as the Euro dash's soft plastic too. Probably it's just a firm soft plastic like in some VWs that's not particularly soft but nonetheless is rubberized. But I haven't sat in the car so I wouldn't know...
 

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We'll know the true answer once the true NA spec hit auto journalists and dealers.
 

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Yes, well, BRGT350 already confirmed a few posts up that the US Fiesta has a soft-touch dash, but either way, it's not a huge deal. It would annoy me if it ends up in production with a hard plastic dashboard though...
 

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As it would me, what disgusts me is my Fiancee's Kia which cost like some six thousand less than my Focus ST, has a soft touch dash. I have one of the most expensive built Foci models ever made and it has a sleezy plastic dash. But I've noticed that is a major trend with US Automakers, great looking exterior hard plastic interior.
 

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I know someone with a 1st generation CTS that has a solid but textured dash. I thought it felt appropriately upscale for a near-luxury car. The problem with a soft-touch dash is that if you do it wrong the soft stuff peels or cracks in the car's old age. I think a textured dash is perfectly appropriate for the $15-20K Fiesta.

BTW the Fiestas at LA had to have been very early prototypes with many fit and finish issues that will be resolved later. That's probably the explanation for those crazy trunk springs.
 

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The only problem I had about the LA show was that you could only sit in one of the cars. I dont understand why at the US reveal they would only let you sit in one fiesta.

Also no one knew anything about the sunroof availaility. Its not listed on the ford fiesta build site either.
 

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whoever made those videos didn't know what he was talking about. For starters, the Us Fiesta FOR SURE has a soft touch, and IIRC it was the exact same stuff as the Euro car. The doors obviously have hard plastic, for crying out loud... it's an entry-level car. Where do people come up with their expectations?

There are $40k+ cars with hard plastics. :confused:

As for the suspension, it was stiffened up for the US spec since we will be getting all-season tires, and not the summer tires on the Euro cars we got for the Fiesta Movement (Which rocks for enthusiasts who will likely change out to high performance tires...meaning the car will handle BETTER than the Euro car!!!!). Everyone I know that has driven the US car said it is identical to the Euro and they were very impressed at what a great job the Dearborn engineers did on the car.

Complaining about trunk hinges? Laugh... I guess you have to find SOMETHING wrong with the best car in the class, right? :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
@Mark, another reason I think the suspension was tweeked for the N.A Fiesta was to compensate for the modifications made to front and back structures.

As far as the reviewers complaints on the sedan trunk hinges are valid as this takes away IMO the image of being a best in class benchmark car. $14,000 or $40,000 price tag should not dictate whether the car maker is attempting a A+ effort or just a C+ effort. I say just because Honda Accord uses these crappy grocery crushing hinges on their top of the line midsize sedan, should not mean that it is OK for Ford,no matter what segment or class of vehicle. Smart people know these hinges are a stupid, lousy , and outdated design.
I know in North America both Honda and Toyota in recent articles are being called out by the media for some shoddy bits, lack of attention to detail, and cutting corners here and there.
Ford IMO must listen closely to what the feedback is and respond to the valid concerns of would be customers. Ford has the attention of many new consumers whom have not considered a Ford vehicle and it is vital and necessary for Ford to not just meet what the competition offers, but exceed and lead.

It appears Ford has cleared a major hurdle which is the media. Since last year check the media responses to FoMoCo to what they write today. It is astounding the different tone from the media today when writing about Ford.
And if comments on car blogs such as Car&Driver, LLN, etc are any indication of consumer perceptions of Ford cars, it appears that perceptions are getting much more positive towards Ford cars.

And you have to admit that the noise when opening the trunk lid from the old screen door porch type springs does not instill "best in class" images. The noise reminded me of the old screen door we had on our house when I was a child.

There is a price to pay if Ford wants to be seen as a top line car maker.Having a higher MSRP and more features is one thing, but with it comes the perception of this type of consumer who is a stickler for the details when shopping for the top line car.
 

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The only problem I had about the LA show was that you could only sit in one of the cars. I dont understand why at the US reveal they would only let you sit in one fiesta.

Also no one knew anything about the sunroof availaility. Its not listed on the ford fiesta build site either.
I emailed the Fiesta reservation folks about the sunroofs. They said availability would be August or September. And they will add it to your reservation, you just have to ask them after you reserve. I think you can actually add any of the planned packages if you ask.

The only thing I'm not clear on is how this effects the supposed terms of the reservation, which say you need to take delivery in May IIRC. I am going to email then back about that.
 

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Actually, you just have to place an order by May (May 3rd specifically). You don't have to pick up your car until September 3rd.
 

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Dearborn are you listening? One of the first to review your "tweaked" Fiesta SAYS THE SEATS ARE TERRIBLE!!!!!!!

PUT THE Euro seats back in the car!!!!!!

..........Told you so Ford!
 

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Dearborn are you listening? One of the first to review your "tweaked" Fiesta SAYS THE SEATS ARE TERRIBLE!!!!!!!

PUT THE Euro seats back in the car!!!!!!

..........Told you so Ford!
Uh oh. Golf is off his meds again.

Of course, if we actually read the article we realize this is just one blogger complaining about lumbar support in both the Fiesta and cars generally. How that makes the seats generally terrible is not at all clear. You're not going to know if you like them until you sit in them.
 

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Uh oh. Golf is off his meds again.
If you can't make a good counter arguement then it's always a good tactic to take a "cheap shot".


Wow this kind of crap is so tired, but nevertheless it seems to be the standard on the web to this day.


Of course, if we actually read the article we realize this is just one blogger complaining about lumbar support in both the Fiesta and cars generally. How that makes the seats generally terrible is not at all clear. You're not going to know if you like them until you sit in them.

Problem is that the EU spec standard seats are just fine with the tons of units that were sold to RoW buyers. I don't hear THEM complaining about a lack of lumbar support. :rolleyes:
 
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