Ford

2021 Ford Figo 1.2 AT review, test drive

Credit: autocarindia.com

2021 Ford Figo automatic: what is it?

What you see here is the third evolution of the Ford Figo automatic. Originally launched in 2015 with an 110hp, 1.5-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine and a dual-clutch transmission, the Figo auto was redone in 2019 with a new 123hp, 1.5-litre, three-cylinder petrol unit that came mated to a 6-speed torque converter auto gearbox. The latter version was discontinued for the BS6 era earlier last year, and the long overdue replacement has just gone on sale and is the subject of this review. The latest Figo auto features the same 6-speed torque converter auto gearbox but comes powered by a smaller, 96hp, 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine. The use of the smaller engine qualifies the Ford for tax benefits available to sub-four-metre cars with petrol engine displacement less than 1,200cc, and resultantly, the pricing has been favourably realigned too. The promise is of torque converter smoothness for AMT money.  

2021 Ford Figo automatic: what is it like on the outside?

The Figo automatic carries the same styling that debuted on the facelifted model from 2019. The ‘Cellular’ grille design, the clean front bumper with the C-shaped fog light housing, and the slightly sportier rear bumper make the Figo look contemporary enough. Notably, the diamond-cut, 15-inch alloy wheels are part of the BS6 update. On the whole, the Figo still looks smart and well-proportioned.

2021 Ford Figo automatic: what’s it like on the inside?

Stepping inside, you’ll see that here, too, everything has stayed the same as the facelifted car. The cabin has an all-black theme, with piano black inserts on the dashboard, steering wheel, gear lever surround and door panels that give it a more premium look (but are fingerprint magnets). The dashboard itself has a layered design, though its overall layout is showing its age. For example, the tray above the 12V socket – ideal for placing you phone while charging – is not nearly large enough to accommodate many phones we use today.

The free-standing, 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system takes centre stage on the dash, and while it responds well to touch and is relatively straightforward to operate, the interface looks basic. More importantly, it misses out on Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, which is something that even more affordable cars offer. AUX connectivity, Bluetooth and embedded navigation are part of the package.

Up front, the seats are comfortable and offer good levels of cushioning and under-thigh support. The driver’s seat height adjust should help you find a comfortable driving position, though telescopic steering adjustment would have been appreciated. The view out is quite good with no major blind-spots, though the small rear-view mirrors (while effective for their size) leave room for improvement.

On the equipment front, the Figo automatic is available in the mid-spec Titanium and top-spec Titanium+ trims. The equipment list is headlined by class-leading safety features like six airbags and electronic stability control. Comfort and convenience features include automatic climate control, rain sensing wipers and auto headlamps, push-button start/stop, a rear parking camera and electric release for the tailgate via key fob or switch in the cabin (no physical release present on the tailgate, which can be a bit annoying). Modern amenities like LED headlights, keyless entry, a wireless charger, rear AC vents and a cooled glove box are missing, however.

2021 Ford Figo automatic: should you buy it?

The Ford Figo automatic is only available in two trims – Titanium, which is priced at Rs 7.75 lakh (ex-showroom), and Titanium+, which costs Rs 8.20 lakh. At first glance, the Figo Titanium AT might look like the costliest entry-point amongst its rivals, as the Hyundai Grand i10 Nios Magna AMT starts at Rs 6.62 lakh and the Maruti Suzuki Swift VXI AMT starts at Rs 7.01 lakh. However, when you consider that the Titanium is a mid-level variant, its price is much more competitive to its mid-range counterparts – the Nios Sportz AMT (Rs 7.23 lakh) and Swift ZXI AMT (Rs 7.64 lakh). In fact, the top-spec Figo Titanium+ AT even undercuts the price of the range-topping Swift ZXI+ AMT (Rs 8.42 lakh), however it still doesn’t beat the Nios Asta AMT’s Rs 7.86 lakh price tag.

So, should you buy one? The Figo is missing the latest equipment and the package has started to feel a bit long in the tooth now. Yes, this Figo auto promises much, with class-leading power, a relatively sophisticated torque converter gearbox and a keen price tag, but somehow the package doesn’t quite bowl you over.

That being said, the Figo’s appeal is in its fun-to-drive nature, strong build and class-leading safety equipment; these have long been the prime reasons to be interested in the Ford hatchback. The new automatic transmission adds in convenience to this list of strengths.