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Ford Fiesta makes history

The Ford Fiesta has become the best-selling car of all time in the UK.

The Ford Escort has lost its crown as the UK best-selling car to its little nephew, the Fiesta.

Sales of the Fiesta, first launched in 1976, have finally overtaken the Escort record of 4,105,961 in the 32 years it was on sale in the UK from 1968-2000.

The Fiesta has led the UK’s small car segment for 27 of its 37 years and has been Britain’s best-selling car since 2009 when it overtook the Ford Focus.

“The Ford Fiesta has gone from strength to strength and today’s car combines style, value, driving dynamics and remarkable technologies such as the multi-award-winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine,” said Ford Britain’s boss Mark Ovenden.

“It continues to outsell its nearest retail competitor by more than two to one – and that really tells the story of this extraordinary car.”

The most popular Ford Fiesta series in Britain is the Zetec, priced at £12,945, while More than 40% of Fiesta buyers in the UK choose the turbo-charged 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine.

Ford Fiesta facts
1972: Fiesta conceived as secret Project Bobcat to create a new Ford small car
1973: Ford Board of Directors gives go-ahead to produce Bobcat
1974: Construction of Ford’s new Valencia manufacturing complex
1975: Fiesta name chosen by Henry Ford II
1976: Mk I introduced in 1.0 and 1.1-litre Ghia form. UK launch falls into 1977
1977: Ford introduces 1.3-litre version
1978: Fiesta wins British Design Council Award
1979: Millionth Fiesta built for worldwide sales. Special sporty version enters Monte Carlo Rally – this would become the XR2
1981: Ford introduces the new Fiesta XR2 with a 1.6-litre engine, stiffer suspension and alloy wheels. It was the first 100mph Fiesta
1983: Mk II launched with fifth gear and 1.6 litre diesel option – a first in its class
1984: First Fiesta runs on lead-free petrol.
1987: Best sales year with just under 154,000 Fiestas sold in Britain. CTX continuously variable transmission added to Fiesta range
1989: Mk III launched with anti-lock brakes and lean-burn engines. Available for the first time as a five-door. Fiesta is first
small car with ABS. Fiesta XR2i joins the range
1990: 135PS Fiesta RS Turbo launched
1993: Driver airbags standard.
1996: Mk IV launched with Zetec engines and dual airbags standard. Fiesta Ghia 1.3-litre added to UK range
2002: Mk V launched initially in five-door with new line up of engines including the new Duratec petrols and a 1.4-litre Duratorq
TDCi and Durashift EST auto
2003: Three-door version added
2005: 150PS Fiesta ST launched – most powerful to date
2006: Refreshed Fiesta launched with voice activation and Bluetooth
2007: Ford Verve concept debuts at IAA Frankfurt motor show
2008: Mk VI launched. Fiesta ECOnetic becomes UK’s most fuel efficient 5-seat family car with 76.3mpg and 98g/km CO2
2009: Fiesta makes north American debut
2011: Fiesta S1600 special edition 1.6-litre, 134PS arrives. Fiesta RS world rally car makes its competitive debut
2012 New Fiesta is launched, new powertrains including the award winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine
2013 New Fiesta ST launched with 182PS 1.6L EcoBoost engine
2014 Ford Fiesta ranks as the UK’s best-selling vehicle ever in the UK, exceeding 4,115,000 sales since 1976

About Gareth Herincx

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who's worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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One comment

  1. Sat here wondering why the Mk IV Facelift (commenly known as the Mk 5 in the UK) doesnt even get a mention? Yet the introduction of the 2003 3dr does?

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