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Buying an old Fiesta

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Hello new here-I hope I can get some advice. I want to get a Fiesta, petrol and auto about 008-10.  A few queries.

Are these auto boxes reliable?

What to look for when buying a Fiesta of this age.

Best engine size-I want to be able to keep up on the motorway and not too slow acceleration but  do not want penalising by a high insurance group?

I do not know anything about the Fiesta except that it has a good reputation as a small car and it has the physical size we want, so any general info is appreciated.

I have looked in Parkers and it does not stipulate which models in that time frame have the auto option?

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A 1.4 is good enough for motorways. Other than that you'd have you get a zetec-s with the 1.6L engine. I believe the ST came with a 2L, but you'd have to check that out. 

Is there any particular reason you need an auto? They're not very common that's all.

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some of the Fiesta automatics had Durashift  which is not a traditional hydraulic automatic box, but is essentially a manual gearbox which uses electronics to make the gears change for you. I think there has been a lot of problems with these type of gearboxes/ the automatic clutches on them. I do not know which versions/years but make sure you look into this.

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On 8/27/2017 at 11:04 AM, sproutdreamer said:

Hello new here-I hope I can get some advice. I want to get a Fiesta, petrol and auto about 008-10.  A few queries.

I've got a 2012 (May) Titanium petrol auto. Bought it when it was a few months old and with 400 miles on the clock. It now has 25,000 miles. I chose the Fiesta due to many positive reviews and also because it had a torque-converter auto box. I was concerned about the reliability of automated manuals and fancy dual clutch types.

I've not had any gear box issues so far. Things I have noted about the transmission:

It is a 4 speed unit.

It holds onto 1st gear for too long, for my liking. A tad annoying in low speed traffic and as the revs rise quite high you do get a little jolt when it shifts into 2nd. Accelerating steadily when on an open road and it isn't an issue. 

It has a lock-up function on the torque-converter in 3rd and 4th gears, which will give better MPG when activated. This will only work when the transmission is up to operating temperature. Can vary between 4-6 miles from a cold start depending on the air temperature and speed driven. I rarely see the lock-up happen in 3rd - I think once when climbing a steep motorway hill on the way to Cornwall. Otherwise it always occurs in 4th gear when vehicle speed (and trans temp is high enough) goes above 43mph. It will drop out of 4th gear T-C lock-up when your speed drops below 40mph, or the load on the engine increases, such as going up a hill or you require a higher rate of acceleration. I'd prefer the T-C to lock-up at 38mph then I'd be getting better MPG when driving in a 40mph limit.

From 1 April 2012 the VED banding for the Fiesta 1.4 auto dropped from G to F. If you can manage to make your budget stretch to such a car you'll save yourself £40 a year.

I did notice some fluid leakage from the driveshaft seals but this hasn't gotten any worse. Maybe something worth looking out for when examining a potential purchase? 

The transmission fluid has never needed topping up.

The auto gearbox is heavier than the manual and makes the car slightly heavier than the 1.4 diesel of the same era. Front coil springs are from the diesel and more expensive as such. I had a snapped-on-the-driveway OSF coil spring earlier this year and had a bit of a headache trying to obtain replacements - especially as Ford wanted £100 for each spring plus fitting! The Ford spring for a petrol manual Fiesta was less than half that price. 

I hope this helps. Good luck with your search!


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