Ford Ka+ (2017-present)

A roomy and practical city car but the Ford Ka+ is let down by underpowered engines

Strengths & Weaknesses


Comfortable and nimble
Spacious interior
Prices start at under £10,000


Underpowered engines
Anonymous design
Lacks useful safety technology

City cars are miracles of performance and packaging, and the new Ka+ is no exception. While its price pitches it against cars such as the VW up! and Hyundai i10, its size means it treads on the toes of larger cars such as the Polo and i20.

That’s because it’s an updated version of the Ford Fiesta that’s about to be replaced with a brand new model.It’s enabled Ford to keep the price low, because it hasn’t had to develop a new car, but offer more space than the old Ka - which has meant that it’s been renamed to Ka+.

Ford has concentrated on practicality over style with a high roof, five doors and a usefully large boot that’s only a few litres shy of the Fiesta’s and bigger than a Skoda Citigo’s, a Hyundai i10’s and a Fiat 500’s.

The interior is a little cramped in the rear but two adults in the back, rather than three, will just about cope with long journeys. The seats are quite upright, which adds to the impression of space but prevents you stretching your legs. Ford claims there are 21 storage cubbies in the car. Remarkably, rear as well as front passengers get a pair of cupholders.

As if to emphasise the car’s no-nonsense ambitions, there are just two engines, both 1.2-litre petrols, to choose from. They’re slow and old tech; no state-of-the-art 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine here. The more powerful one is the best and not much more expensive. Both return around 56mpg and cost £30 to tax, as long as you get your car registered before the car tax changes from April 1.

The Ka+ shares the same qualities that make the Fiesta fun to drive. The steering gives you a real sense of how far the wheels are turning, helping you to take corners and squeeze through gaps more accurately. The five-speed gearbox is precise, and the car resists leaning in corners while ironing out potholes bumps.

The interior is quiet but similar to the Ford Fiesta that its based on - so it’s button-strewn and looks like it’s from a car that’s five years’-old. Entry-level Studio trim is not badly equipped. It has electric front windows, Bluetooth and air-con but Zetec, the next trim in the range, is the one to have for its smarter alloy wheels, digital radio and Applink software, giving you the ability to control some apps on your smartphone through the car’s voice control and steering wheel buttons.

The car hasn’t been independently crash-tested by Euro NCAP, but would be unlikely to gain the maximum five stars, as it lacks safety equipment that’s increasingly common on modern cars - particularly automatic emergency braking that has proved effective at avoiding crashes.

Last Updated 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017 - 18:00