While so many cars command massive price tags, it’s always refreshing to get behind the wheel of a vehicle which doesn’t, and one which still manages to pack a sense of fun, sensibility and charm. The latest-generation Ford Figo retains what is key to making a great compact hatchback.

Basic Facts

Price: R213 800
Engine: 1.5-litre naturally-aspirated 3-cylinder petrol
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Power: 88 kW
Torque: 150 Nm
Fuel Consumption: 6.5 L/100 km

What’s Changed?

While its predecessor was always a great compact drive, with the latest-generation Ford Figo, quite a lot has changed and been improved, including updated styling, a new powerplant and improved technology. The new Figo enjoys an update which makes it look, driver and feel now fresher and sharper than ever before.

Powertrain

Powered by a new 1.5-litre naturally-aspirated 3-cylinder petrol engine, the new engine provides for what is a great base to this updated model. While output figures of 88 kW and 150 Nm of torque may seem small on paper, with the Ford’s compact body and low weight of just 1047 kg, performance and fuel economy alike are delivered in an impressive dash with this latest-generation model.

Handling the power, there is also a new 6-speed automatic transmission. Refreshingly smooth-shifting of gears is what it offers, with the Figo never feeling like its unsure of what gear to be in. Ford really has blended what is a gem of a motor and gearbox combination within this compact city slicker.

Practical Comfort

With its cute looks on the outside, comes what is a well thought out and spacious interior space, particularly for a vehicle of its size. While base models may lack a modern day type large touchscreen media system, Ford has devised a very nifty way to give even these buyers a way of making use of a tool which most of us certainly carry, the modern day smartphone.

Of course, the excellent 6.5-inch touchscreen based Sync3 multimedia system is available, however, even the base system works really well, combining what is a simple clear radio with the power of all your own smartphones connected services made available through the Figo’s clever on dash dock.

12The front of the Figo’s cabin feels spacious, clutter-free and well thought out. Rear passenger legroom is rather tight, however, this is something expected across most of this budget compact segment. You can fold the rear seats flat in the conventional 60:40 split in order to increase loading capacity, with the Ford offering a small but manageable daily commute loading area.

With both driver and passenger airbags, ABS and EBD, the latest-generation Figo adds safety piece of mind to your commute, offering what is a satisfying fun drive, with good road holding.

Conclusion, Pricing & Warranty

This market segment as with many of the spaces above has become increasingly more competitive. With main rivals such as Volkswagen’s latest-generation Polo Vivo, the Toyota Etios and latest-generation Suzuki Swift, the competition out there is certainly fierce, however, Ford has managed to offer what is a great looking, fun and well equipped new budget car which ticks the right boxes and just makes a lot of sense. With its excellent motor, smooth transmission and thoughtful design, its certainly a compact vehicle which would be on my list of considerations within this space.

Pricing for the Figo starts from just above R185,000 for the base model 1.5 Ambiente MT – Hatch – R185,600 (Incl.VAT) with the vehicle under review costing 1.5 Trend AT – Hatch – R213,800 (Incl.VAT).

All models within the range come standard with Ford Protect, comprising a 4-year/120 000 km comprehensive warranty, 3-year/unlimited distance roadside assistance and 5-year/unlimited km corrosion warranty.         

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