9 Best & Worst Ford Fiesta Years (With Facts & Stats)

If you are in the market for a small yet fierce subcompact car that offers lots of value and practicality, then the Fiesta is a great candidate.

The Fiesta was sadly discontinued for the 2019 model year as Ford shifted its focus to SUVs and trucks.

JD Power has provided the Ford Fiesta with above-average ratings. In 2019, it received a consumer score of 74 out of 100, with great individual ratings for “quality & reliability” and “dealership experience,” obtaining 77 and 78 (out of 100), respectively.

To learn more about the best and the worst of this iconic subcompact car, continue reading…

Here’s The Short Answer To What The Best And Worst Years For The Ford Fiesta Are:

The best Ford Fiesta model years are 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019. The worst model years for the Fiesta are 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015. This is based on consumer reviews, online ratings and most importantly, the number of and the severity of reported problems.

What Are The Best Years For The Ford Fiesta?

Ford has produced a lot of great Fiestas in the model’s almost long lifespan.

Listed below are those that deserve to be viewed as the best of the best.

2019 Ford Fiesta

The 2019 Ford Fiesta has a solid engine, a problem-free transmission, great handling and also has the latest tech – all of which make this model a stand-out year. 

If you want the most up-to-date iteration, then the 2019 Fiesta should provide you with what you want in terms of bells and whistles.

The 2019 Ford Fiesta secured a 4.2 out of 5.0 on Edmunds. Over at JD Power, it was granted a score of 74 out of 100.

Over at Edmunds, this vehicle owner chose the Fiesta and shared his experience so far with it:

“I simply love this little car. It gets better mileage than any car I ever owned and is quiet, comfortable, handles very well and I think it is nice looking…”

2018 Ford Fiesta

The 2018 Ford Fiesta is a great subcompact car because it is very enjoyable to drive, comes in different variants/trims, and is good in terms of practicality and reliability. 

Although you won’t find a brand new 2018 Fiesta there are plenty in the used car market that will still be in tip-top condition.

The 2018 Ford Fiesta secured a 4.1 out of 5.0 on Edmunds. 

Over at Edmunds, this owner had an interesting take on who should get the Ford Fiesta:

“First of all, I would like to say that if you’re a man, whether medium-sized or large, don’t bother buying this car. It’s not big enough. However, if you’re small or regular size woman, it’s GREAT!”

2017 Ford Fiesta

The 2017 Ford Fiesta comes with strong reviews as a result of great performance, good fuel management, and a stylish interior (for the price) – it was also free of the transmission troubles that plagued the earlier models.

If your budget is a bit limited but you would still like to stay relatively updated in terms of electronics and engine technology, then the 2017 Ford Fiesta is a mighty option to look for in the used car market. 

The 2017 Ford Fiesta secured a 4.2 out of 5.0 on Edmunds. 

Over at Edmunds, this Fiesta owner provided an honest assessment of the vehicle:

“This vehicle is downright amazing for a commuter car that can go out onto the track and still have fun. Yes, it still has that cheap car build quality issues, such as road noise, but it has it where it counts.”

2016 Ford Fiesta

The 2016 Ford Fiesta is the oldest in the bunch but do not underestimate the value you can obtain from a used version of this model. It is still very agile and economic.

If you have a good eye for quality used vehicles in the second-hand market, then you may be able to find a great 2016 Ford Fiesta model at a great price. 

The 2016 Ford Fiesta secured a 4.2 out of 5.0 on Edmunds. Over at JD Power, it was granted a score of 78 out of 100.

Over at Edmunds, this owner shared an interesting comparison to popular (and pricier models):

“It’s a subcompact and the ST model only comes with a manual transmission. Surprisingly lively and more fun to drive around town on a daily basis than my 2015 Corvette and a 2014 Mercedes AMG…”

Consumer Scores For Best Ford Fiesta Years

Below is a table that presents all the consumer ratings of the best Ford Fiesta model years from reputable vehicle websites:

Model YearEdmunds’ Consumer RatingKelley Blue Book’s Consumer RatingJD Power’s Consumer Rating
2019 Ford Fiesta4.2 / 5.0NA74 / 100
2018 Ford Fiesta4.1 / 5.0NANA
2017 Ford Fiesta4.2 / 5.0NANA
2016 Ford Fiesta4.2 / 5.0NA78 / 100

Related: 4 Most Common Ford Fiesta Problems (Explained)

What Are The Worst Years For The Ford Fiesta?

The Ford Fiesta has also been on the receiving end of several complaints and issues due to its myriad problems or defects.

The models listed below are the versions of the vehicle that you have to steer clear of.

2015 Ford Fiesta

The 2015 Ford Fiesta was not only very problematic but was very problematic at the early stages of ownership. Symptoms or defects started to occur at as early as 17,000 miles (on average) – the biggest problem was due to its PowerShift transmission which was notoriously jerky.

The 2015 Fiesta had a total of 45 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 268 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

The main problems of the 2015 Ford Fiesta are the following:

  • Jerking, slipping
  • Transmission shuddering/slipping
  • Jerks and hesitates
  • Door latch failure

2014 Ford Fiesta

The 2014 Ford Fiesta has had a lot of problems in its run. According to CarProblemZoo.com, the three most reported issues are powertrain, engine (and engine cooling), and equipment issues – again, many of these complaints were regarding the PowerShift transmission.

The 2014 Fiesta had a total of 118 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 568 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

The main problems of the 2014 Ford Fiesta are the following:

  • Intermittent shudder when taking off
  • Shuddering and jerking
  • Door latch failure

2013 Ford Fiesta

Much like the 2015 and 2014 Ford Fiesta, the 2013 model year experiences the same issues and problems, but to a greater degree. This model year was also known for its transmission troubles.

The 2013 Fiesta had a total of 207 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 840 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

The main problems of the 2013 Ford Fiesta are the following:

  • Slipping, chugging
  • Clanging, hesitating, loses power
  • Hesitation at first gear
  • Door latch failure

2012 Ford Fiesta

A unique problem that the 2012 model year has is overheating, and this is indicative of problems in the cooling system of the engine such as the improper flow of fluids such as coolant, oil, and lubricants. Transmission issues were prevalent also.

The 2012 Fiesta had a total of 85 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 771 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

The main problems of the 2012 Ford Fiesta are the following:

  • Transmission shudders
  • Problems shifting
  • Overheating
  • Door latch failure

2011 Ford Fiesta

“Beware of the clunker,” says CarComplaints.com about the 2011 Ford Fiesta, and rightfully so. Based on figures alone, this model year is the most problematic Fiesta among the bunch. The PowerShift transmission problems peaked in 2011.

The 2011 Fiesta had a total of 183 complaints at CarComplaints.com and 975 problems at CarProblemZoo.com.

The main problems of the 2011 Ford Fiesta are the following:

  • Transmission failed
  • Jerking/shuddering/hesitation when accelerating
  • Thermostat housing leak
  • Door latch failure

Related: Ford Fiesta Alarm Going Off? (9 Causes & Solutions)

What Years Have The Most Complaints?

There are several Ford Fiesta model years, both old and new, that have received numerous complaints through the years. Listed below are complaints and problems listed for each model year: 

Model YearComplaints (CarComplaints.com)Problems (CarProblemZoo.com)
2019 Ford Fiesta720
2018 Ford Fiesta734
2017 Ford Fiesta666
2016 Ford Fiesta17170
2015 Ford Fiesta45268
2014 Ford Fiesta118568
2013 Ford Fiesta207840
2012 Ford Fiesta85771
2011 Ford Fiesta183975

What Problems Do Ford Fiestas Have?

Based on the information we have gathered online, here are the most common issues that you may encounter with a Ford Fiesta:

  • Transmission failure
  • Jerking/shuddering/hesitation when accelerating
  • Intermittent shudder when taking off
  • Powertrain issues
  • Door latch failure

What Are The Best Alternatives To The Ford Fiesta?

The Ford Fiesta is one of the better options in the subcompact car segment, ranking seventh overall with a score of 7.9 out of 10, beating the likes of the Chevrolet Spark (7.6) and Mini Cooper Clubman (7.6).

However, there are also a lot of great alternatives, listed below:

Make & ModelScoreMSRPFuel Economy (MPG)
Honda Fit8.6$17,442 – $23,080City: 29 – 33 /Highway: 36 – 40
Chevrolet Sonic8.4$14,348 – $19,702City: 26 – 27 /Highway: 34 – 38
Mini Cooper8.4$22,508 – $34,764City: 22 – 28 /Highway: 31 – 38
Hyundai Accent8.3$17,105 – $19,898City: NA / Highway: NA
Kia Rio8.1$16,935 – $18,127City: 28 /Highway: 37
Toyota Yaris8.1$19,340 – $20,721City: 30 – 32 /Highway: 39 – 40
Ford Fiesta7.9$15,933 – $22,386City: 25 – 27 /Highway: 32 – 37
Chevrolet Spark7.6$15,408 – $17,524City: 29 – 30 /Highway: 37 – 38
Mini Cooper Clubman7.6$24,888 – $35,009City: 21 – 24 /Highway: 30 – 33
Volkswagen Beetle7.5$24,340 – $37,766City: 26Highway: 33
Nissan Versa6.9$15,348 – $20,310City: 27 – 31 /Highway: 36 – 39
Fiat 5005.9$18,249 – $22,311City: 24 – 28 /Highway: 32 – 33
Mitsubishi Mirage5.3$14,650 – $16,742City: 33 – 36 /Highway: 41 – 43

Source: cars.usnews.com

Related: Ford Fiesta Beeping? (9 Causes & Solutions)

References

https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/ford/fiesta

https://www.carcomplaints.com/Ford/Fiesta/

https://www.carproblemzoo.com/ford/fiesta/

https://www.edmunds.com/ford/fiesta/2019/review/

https://www.kbb.com/ford/fiesta/

https://www.jdpower.com/cars/2019/ford/fiesta