On first view the Ford Ka is a little… well…. under whelming really. If you were to put a Toyota badge on Ford’s new baby, it could be an Aygo, or a small Clio, or a Citroen, or a Corsa- the list of Eurobox small cars that look the same is endless.
The hype and media coverage that preceeded the first Ford Ka in 1996, which expertly positioned a repackaged Fiesta as a cool and trendy first car, was justified.
Only the Mini and latterly the Fiat 500 have received such status as the first car you want to own when you pass your driving test. And that’s the market that the Ka is entering-a cool car for a limited budget.
The original Ka sold 1.5 million units, of which almost 500,000 were in the UK.
The new version has better engines, a diesel version that will do around 65 mpg and a 1.2 petrol version. Emissions on most will be under 120g/km so no road tax concerns. And the Ka will certainly be cheap to run. But is that enough- with no X factor Ford may struggle to find a place for their newest model, and may just cannibalise Fiesta buyers from their own brand.
Pricing and offers will be the key to success, but that is where Ford’s strength lies. Even when the product isn’t the best, with the massive dealer network and a respected brand they always seem to pull it off, so expect some keen deals on launch.