New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Reader test: Ford Fiesta

2009-09-18 13:56

Egor Oussov, Johannesburg

Being a proper petrolhead, I did so much research before I purchased my first Ford - a three-door 1.6 Fiesta Titanium. But the amount of features and value for money is excellent, compared with its direct competition. In my opinion, it’s a total winner considering  both ends of the spectrum - sporty and practical.

Honda Jazz was brilliant, but was too family oriented, quite expensive and the dashboard had a cheap and cheerful feel to it.

Then I looked at the Mini which I've always loved, but the more I considered it, the more it didn’t make sense to me. Why would you pay so much for such an ordinary car, with way too many options and no individualism or even tiny bit of exclusivity whatsoever. Every one in 10 cars in Sandton is a Mini, which is good when you choose a motorbike and the breakfast club you’ll be riding but when it comes to cars that’s just boring.

If you're after straight line, tarmac-tearing performance, look elsewhere. But if you are looking for a midpoint between Earth (comfort) and the Sun (performance), then to end up on Mars is a perfect middle. (Hope my logic made sense.)

When it comes to driving a car enthusiastically, it will be above average from traffic light to traffic light. Especially when you go past 3 500 r/min; this is when the engine opens its lungs. What is properly brilliant about this vehicle is its handling,  where it even out-handled an inexperienced driver in the almighty Golf V GTI .

My average consumption is good - 8.5 l/100 km over 12 000 km, which incorporates very enthusiastic driving, driving to work and traffic crawling modes.


I love the interior of this car. Plenty of soft plastics, modern features and incredible “userfriendliness”, and although the dashboard was designed around the logic of the mobile phone, I can promise you that it’s much easier to use it than an average phone. And the dashboard can be used as a phone, as well.

Many standard features will form a part of option list in cars triple its price such as: Bluetooth kit, voice control, USB & iPod slot for music lovers. The standard six- speaker sound provides a satisfying and reenergising experience after a long day at work.  The space is more than sufficient to accommodate four adults and, once rear passengers have climbed through the door configuration, it’s comfortable. Sound isolation is top notch.

Very few cons include how Ford somehow don’t install auto central locking in their cars which is annoying, especially with SA's crime situation. But it’s a matter of a habit: seatbelt, lock , mirrors and start.

Additionally, surprisingly no one at Ford ever thought of rubberising door pockets and the central console to minimise rattling of objects in there. My solution is to buy a rubber mat and test your DIY skills. Finally it would be good to have fold flat rear seats, but last weekend I managed to bring a washing mashing and tumble dryer home.

To sum up: l love my car, it gathers plenty of attention, it’s entertaining  and I am covered for six years /200 000 km from anything going wrong. Well done, Ford!

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