The 2011 Ford Fiesta, the only car in its segment to earn a Top Safety Pick from the U.S. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety under its new test standards. The Fiesta is also first car in its segment to earn top crash test ratings in each of the world’s largest auto markets that perform safety testing.
“Ford is committed to safety, including our efforts to deliver top crash test ratings that customers look to when choosing new vehicles,” said Sue Cischke, Group Vice President of Sustainability, Environment and Safety. “Fiesta is the latest example of that safety commitment, and shows that a small, fuel-efficient car can deliver top safety.”
Testing agencies in the U.S., China, Europe and Australia/New Zealand rate the Ford Fiesta at the top of the list for crash ratings. The Fiesta also just received the maximum five-star safety rating by the China Automotive Technology and Research Center under the China New Car Assessment Program, or C-NCAP. This follows maximum five-star ratings in Europe and Australia/New Zealand.
The impressive ratings add to the global sales momentum of Fiesta. European sales of the latest-generation Ford Fiesta reached 1 million last month. The landmark was achieved just 28 months after the popular small car went on sale in Ford dealerships across Europe. The Fiesta has been the best-selling small car in Europe for the past two years.
In the U.S., Fiesta is attracting new customers, including those in the trend-setting California market. In 2010, Fiesta played a key role in helping Ford to achieve its highest retail share in California since 2006. Los Angeles continues to be the top-selling region for Ford’s smallest car.
Beneath the car’s stylish exterior is a structure crafted from high-strength steels engineered to preserve quality and enhance driver and passenger safety. More than 55 percent of Fiesta body structure is made from ultra-high-strength steel, and the extensive use of high-strength, lightweight boron steel helps protect critical occupant safety zones.
Fiesta offers a segment-exclusive available driver’s knee airbag, developed to help reduce lower-leg injuries in the event of a frontal collision and to work together with other safety features. The knee airbag joins a suite of Fiesta safety features that include dual-stage, first-row airbags, side-impact airbags and side curtain airbags.
“Smart” Passenger Occupant Detection System (PODS) sensors determine occupant weight and seat belt status to optimize deployment force. The Fiesta also features class-exclusive smart sensors that use pressure pulses from a side impact to deploy up to 30 percent faster than traditional airbags with acceleration-based sensors.
Ford global safety engineers worked together to prepare the Fiesta to be able to meet stringent crash protection requirements in any region of the world by leveraging the small car expertise of Ford of Europe and an array of virtual, actual and hydraulic sled-simulated crash tests.