Time was, automakers pulled the plug on models that weren’t selling well, or were so far behind their competitors in quality and performance that they were dragging down the brand. There’s a reason most Americans won’t see a single Edsel, Hudson, Studebaker, Rambler or Yugo during their travels this week. That is not the case, however, with the Ford Fiesta, a competitive subcompact hatchback or sedan whose worst trait was its name’s similarity to that of Ford Festiva, a forgettable minicar that debuted in the 1980s.
We encountered the 2019 Fiesta SE — one of the last of its breed — during a recent weekend trip and found it every bit as serviceable as the other subcompacts we’ve driven. The Fiesta’s only deficiency, especially when compared with the Honda Fit, was luggage space and cargo room with the rear seat lowered. Its capacities were 12.8 and 25.4 cubic feet, well short of the diminutive Fit’s 16.6 and 52.7 cubic feet. We gave a “Ford guy” a ride and he spoke well of the Fiesta, a model he’d never ridden in or driven.