If you’ve read our full test of the new Ford Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost, you’ll be aware that it’s an excellent little car.
You may also have noticed that we tested the highest output 125PS version, but two other 1.0-litre models lurk within the updated Fiesta range - a non-turbocharged 80PS model, and the mid-range 100PS EcoBoost.
Shortly after driving the 125PS car, we were able to get behind the wheel of its smaller brother, and it’s another deeply impressive vehicle.
Given its 20 percent power deficit and near two-second sacrifice in the 0-62mph sprint, you might expect the less powerful car to feel a little under-nourished on the street. In actuality, that couldn’t be further from the truth, and at anything other than frustrated car journo velocities it feels little slower than the 125PS car.
A quick flick through the spec sheet reveals the reason - 25PS down it might be, but its 170 Nm torque peak is identical, and developed from the same 1,400rpm. Unless you regularly venture towards the top of the rev counter, the 100PS car may be all the EcoBoost you ever need.
Power aside, the 100PS has all the virtues of its better-endowed sibling - a refined and characterful engine, which is happy to do modest work from low revs and moves quite smartly from the mid-range onwards. Even from tickover, the Fiesta seems to skip down the road with less throttle than you might imagine, and generally makes you wonder why so many people buy diesel superminis these days.
And like the 125PS model, you get the same accurate steering, the same expertly-judged ride and handling characteristics, and the same well-oiled feel to all the controls common to any Fiesta. The interior is spacious, the dashboard still looks a bit like a 1990s Nokia mobile phone, and you still get the Marmite aspect of that Aston Martin-like front grille.
Price as tested: £14,820 (approx, Titanium)
Combined mpg: 65.7 CO2: 99 g/km
If you’re interested in the one-litre Fiesta, we’ve absolutely no problem with recommending one. It makes the diesel seem a little redundant unless you do huge mileage - even if the real-world economy of the EcoBoost models is yet to be proven. It’s just so much more of a pleasant engine to use than any diesel in the class, and you’d have to do quite some mileage before the purchase cost and extra cost of diesel would be overcome.
Really, your only decision should be whether to buy the 100PS or 125PS version. There’s around £500 between them, but they’re otherwise identical. The 100PS certainly isn’t embarrassed by the brisker model, but if the extra £500 isn’t an issue, we’d still recommend the 125PS car - to make those occasional motorway journeys just a little easier.
For more, check out our full summary of the Ford Fiesta alongside reviews, stats, photos and videos.