Voted Indian Car of the Year for 2011 a few months ago, the Figo seems to be making good fortune for Ford, which had put a lot of money on this car (it represents well over half of the brand’s sales in India). Today we celebrate the 100,000th car produced in the Chennai factory, only 15 months after it went into production.
This is an opportunity to introduce you to this city dweller not specifically reserved for India, but which will be exported to South Africa or Mexico, but also to many countries in Black Africa and other emerging countries (in all, in about fifty markets). Even if the Indian market is privileged, for the simple reason that the market segment concerned by this Figo represents 70% of the country’s registrations.
The Figo is therefore a strongly restyled version of the Fiesta G5 that we have known in Europe until 2009.
Adapted to Indian needs, the Figo has been the subject of a major financial effort by Ford, which has invested 500 million dollars in the Chennai plant to launch its production at a rate of 200,000 units per year.
The style of this Figo is quite particular. The fiesta G5 was indeed a rather wise car in style, but to become Figo, it was grafted with a front “Kinetic Design” not really connected with the rest of the car. But despite everything, the whole thing doesn’t look low-cost, although that’s the role it’s supposed to play. The dimensions of
– length: 3.80m
– width: 1.68m
– height: 1.43m
– wheelbase: 2.49m
– weight: from 1040 kgs, to 1130 kgs
– tank capacity: 45 litres
– trunk: 284 litres
The interior is new, with a colourful dashboard in the upper part (and in the higher versions).
The engines selected are a 71 hp (102 Nm) L4 1.2L Durateq in gasoline, and a 69 hp (160 Nm) L4 1.4L Duratorq TDCi in diesel, both in BM5. There are four finishes:
– LXI: totally stripped, it still includes air conditioning (India obliges).
– EXI: adds central locking, power windows, remote trunk opening, 4HP cd-MP3 radio and wheel covers.
– ZXI: adds the rear window wiper and rear window defogging (!!!!!!!), height-adjustable driver’s seat, power mirrors, Bluetooth, body-coloured door mirrors and handles and chrome finish on the grille bar and side indicator repeaters. Royal: the trunk now has a lighting!
– Titanium: This top-of-the-range version finally features ABS, two front airbags and a six-speed front wiper.
I will refrain from commenting on Ford’s equipment and attitude, which, in emerging countries, considers that ABS and Airbags must wait until the fourth level of finish to be part of the standard equipment. Or that you must choose the third level of finish to get a rear window wiper. Shameful! But that was necessary to propose a minimum rate of about €5,500.
Note that the Figo (based on the Fiesta G5) has been joined in recent days by the Fiesta G6 on Maraimalai Nagar’s chains. The latter will play a more rewarding role in the Indian Ford range. It will be sold there in a trunk version only.