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Ford Fiesta delisted in South Africa

Ford South Africa has delisted the Fiesta from its website, signaling an end to the hatchback’s long and popular run in the country.

The only passenger vehicles Ford now sells in South Africa – that isn’t an SUV or a bakkie – are the Mustang and Figo.

However, the Figo is also expected to be on its way out soon – according to multiple reports from local publications. The Figo is no longer listed on new-vehicle databases in the country such as Duoporta, so this is likely to be true.

TopAuto contacted Ford South Africa for comment but the manufacturer did not respond by time of publication.

A brief history of the Fiesta in South Africa

The first Ford Fiesta to make it to South Africa was the fourth generation as far back as 1994.

The little hatch was driven by a 1.3-litre, naturally-aspirated petrol motor with not much going around in the power department, and it offered a 0-100km/h time of around 16 seconds.

However, it wasn’t its speed that caught local hearts, but rather its quirky looks and relatively affordable price tag that made it an attractive value proposition – so much so that it won the South African Car of the Year award in 1998.

Late 2003 saw the entry of the fifth-generation Fiesta to South Africa, which brought with it the first ST-badged hot hatches.

This generation of the Fiesta solidified the car as a viable alternative to VW at the time, and if you look carefully, you can still see a few cruising the streets today.

On AutoTrader, the ST models can still be had for around R80,000, too.

Come 2008, Ford introduces the sixth-generation Fiesta to the country for a starting price of R137,000.

The vehicle immediately proved to be a popular option in the deteriorating vehicle market and achieved a 31% dealer market share for its first three months on sale, outselling the VW Polo and Toyota Yaris, announced Ford in that year.

It was also a finalist in the South African Guild of Motoring Journalists’ Car of the Year competition, although it didn’t take home top honours this time.

Additionally, this was the last new Ford ST model launched in South Africa, signing off the performance brand locally with a bang through the introduction of the limited-edition Fiesta ST200 in mid-2017.

Halfway through 2018 Ford debuts its latest Fiesta, alongside the news that no more high-performance models will be making their way to South African showrooms.

At a starting price of R262,000 the hatchback was on the more premium side of the small-car segment, and fierce competition had also entered the market in the years prior.

Sales of the Fiesta slowly declined over time and in 2022 it sold a combined 26 units in the four months before being delisted.

The Fiesta – and soon the Figo – will surely be missed, and we can’t help but imagine what could’ve been if the ST brand stuck around.

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