Ford Figo Aspire Hatchback Review & First Drive
Ford Figo Aspire Overview
The Indian market saw a big shake up in 1990s when foreign car makers were invited with open doors to the country. Ford was among the first few to enter in 1997 and although the Blue Oval has been in the country since almost two decades now, they haven’t been able to dominate with a significant market share. This is set to change as the company brought in the Figo, got a terrific response and decided to invest more money in India. Then the EcoSport came, an even bigger success and more and more Indians brought home their first Ford. Now the American automaker is set to launch the Figo Aspire, a car which will further boost Ford’s sales numbers in India as it sits in the highly competitive yet volume churning compact sedan space. Has Ford nailed it yet again? A drive around Udaipur helps us get our answer. View Price & Offers on Figo Aspire at CarzPrice
Ford Figo Aspire Style & Look
The new Figo Aspire as already mentioned above is the sub compact sedan based on the new generation Figo hatch, so except the extended boot at the rear everything while everything else looks identical to the new Figo hatchback which will be launched in the market after the sedan.
Ford retained the typical styling DNA even in this new sedan and that is quite obvious from the typical Ford Trapezoidal grille towards the front which gets the four slats while the long elongated headlamps adds the little touch of sportiness to the front face, the Blue oval logo has found its place on the tip of the front hood while talking about the front hood the new hood looks sculpted and has also got two vertical crisp lines on them which starts from the windshield and end towards the Ford logo placed towards the front tip. Besides these there is nothing much interesting to describe towards the front except the raked windshield and some sweeping lines towards the front hood which according to Ford conveys a sense of movement.
Towards the side profile there is a distinct character line which starts from just behind the front headlamps and blends perfectly towards the rear taillamps. You will also love the blacked out B pillar which adds a premium touch to the side profile so are the 8 spoke alloy wheels and side blinkers integrated with the ORVMs (available only on top end variants), the other variants will get side turn indicators placed on the fenders.
Walk towards the rear of the sedan and the extended boot has been perfectly blended with the overall design so the car’s shape does not appear boring or odd. The smaller wrap around tailamps looks stylish but unfortunately does not get LED configuration to them while the chrome finished slat runs across the rear boot of the car while the rear bumper gets some Black treatment towards the lower half which adds the premium feel to the overall sedan.
Ford Figo Aspire Cabin & Comfort
Step inside and one is greeted by a stylish interior. The dashboard seems familiar because the design theme is similar to the EcoSport. The steering wheel, centre console and information screen look very similarto the EcoSport and Fiesta. There are dual-tone black/beige dash and beige seats and door pads. Depending on the variant, there’s either gloss black or silver finished inserts.
There are controls on the steering wheel too. The light blue backlit instrument cluster is pleasant looking but the dials could have been slightly larger. The air vents in the side are circular and feature chrome detailing in the top variant. Headlamp switches are new and placed below the driver side air vent. The boot release button is also placed next to it and is easy to access. The auto climate control switches feel premium and are well detailed. Quality as well as fit are good and are improved over the EcoSport
Ford claims there are as many as 20 storage points inside the car. There’s a storage point on the side of the dashboard that can be accessed when the door is open. Door mounted bottle holders are large and can accommodate more than one bottle if needed.
The seats are comfortable and even feature leather upholstery (first in segment). There is good support up front but the rear seats could have offered more support and could have been madelarger. The rear kneeroom isn’t best in segment but is still very impressive. The front seats have been scooped out to maximize room at the rear. Shoulder room isn’t a lot, so three adults in the back can be a squeeze. The floor isn’t fully flat too so it is good only for two adults. A rear armrest is also offered.Boot space at 359 litres isn’t as much as the Amaze or the Xcent but it is quite usable. The loading height is good and the boot is deep too.
Ford Figo Aspire Engine & Transmission
The Ford Figo Aspire will be available with two petrol and one diesel engine options. The 1.2-litre four cylinder petrol and the 1.5-litre turbocharged four-cylinder diesel will come mated to the five-speed manual gearbox, while the 1.5-litre petrol will be available with a six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.
The 1.5-litreTDCi diesel is tuned to produce 99bhp and 215Nm of torque making it the most powerful car in the segment, marginally higher than the Honda Amaze. At standstill and low speeds, the engine is harsh and there is prominent clatter in the cabin, also a light buzz can be felt on the steering wheel and pedals. The harshness goes down as the rpm increases and engine feels pretty smooth over 2,000 rpm. We are however willing to live with it for the kind of performance it has to offer. The car is quick, getting to 100kph is easy and cruising in triple digits even more so. There is no turbo lag and the healthy bottom-end torque helps quickly getting from 60kph to 100kph without downshifting to the fourth gear. The clutch is light and easy to use even in the city traffic, though the gear shifts require a little extra effort. The ARAI efficiency of the diesel car is rated at 25.83kpl and we managed to get 15.5kpl in our test drive.
The petrol car on the other hand feels relatively underpowered. The Ti-CVT is good to deliver 87bhp and 112Nm, though the tuning, as expected, has been for efficiency. The engine refinement is top notch and driving around in the city is going to be comfortable. The performance isn’t too bad, it can get off-the-line quickly and there is decent midrange to get to 100kph in respectable time, but going past 120kph requires some efforts. The engine needs to be put under lot of stress, though we didn’t mind doing that since it sounds incredible at high rpms. While the ARAI efficiency of the petrol is decent as well at 18.16kpl, we expect the real time efficiency to be much lower at around 12kpl.
The 1.5-litre petrol was not part of the first drive, though we are looking forward to driving it soon. Our experience with the Fiesta AT tells us that the dual-clutch PowerShift transmission is fantastic and the 110bhp and 136Nm will feel even better in the smaller, lighter car.
Ford Figo Aspire Driving Dynamics
Unlike the Fiesta, which is an outright handler, the Aspire seems to have sacrificed some of the corner-carving skills in favor of a comfortable ride. We tested the Figo Aspire on the splendid highways around Udaipur, which means that we are yet to sample the ride quality on the broken tarmac. However, the Aspire dismissed most of the small speed humps and slightly rough patches of road with quite an aplomb. The car is adept at gliding over most of the irregularities and our guess is that only the biggest of the craters would unsettle this car’s composure. High speed stability is pretty fantastic, especially when you remind yourself that we are talking about a budget-end sedan here. The steering, which is an Electric Power Steering (EPS) unit, isn’t light and offers at least some feedback. However, it doesn’t weigh up well with speed and the performance-enthusiast might be left slightly disappointed here. The top-of-the-line Titanium variant we drove comes with 14-inch rims that are shod with 145/65 rubber. Grip levels are decent and it is particularly easy to push this car hard into a corner. However, like we said, the Aspire is not as sure-footed as the Fiesta, which means that the slightly soft-sprung suspension doesn’t inspire enough confidence for mid-corner corrections. The Figo Aspire gets ventilated disc brakes at front and drum brakes at the rear. Braking is pretty strong and ABS ensures that the car stops in a straight line. For information on contact details of Ford car dealers in Hyderabad
Ford Figo Aspire Safety & Braking
Ford has given special attention to the safety of the occupants inside and thus the new sedan comes with robust passenger cage created from high-strength steel, both driver and passenger side airbags and for the first time in the history of Indian auto industry Ford has even provided side and curtain airbags for the occupants as an option. The top end trims also gets ABS and EBD and also hill assist which is available only with the auto transmission variant though.
Ford Figo Aspire Price
Ford Figo Aspire Ex-Showroom Price in Bangalore ranges from 5,47,286/- (Figo Aspire 1.2P Ambiente MT) to 8,10,611/- (Figo Aspire 1.5D Titanium Plus MT). Get best offers for Ford Figo Aspire from Ford Dealers in Bangalore – Check for Figo Aspire price in Bangalore
Ford Figo Aspire Conclussion
The Aspire is a very impressive package which is arguably the best to drive in the segment and is incredibly spacious for a car in the sub-four-meter category. There are plenty of smart storage spaces around the cabin and they have created a smart docking station for devices at the top of the centre console to make it user-friendly for today’s consumers, with an easy to use charging portTags: Ford