The Ford Ka+ is a little difficult to explain. It’s not, as you might expect, an organic evolution from the pint-sized Ford Ka. Instead, it's a miniaturising of the stupidly popular Ford Fiesta from which it borrows most of its mechanical DNA.
The new five-door Ka+ is longer than its outgoing predecessor by about a foot, which creates valuable (and much needed) space in the rear seats and boot. The new 270-litre boot is as big as most superminis (including the Ford Fiesta!) and is substantially bigger than most city cars.
With the Ka+, there's two trims to pick from (the fancy Zetec and entry-level Studio) and both receive a generous sprinkling of tech as standard. Pick up any model and you get electric door mirrors, Bluetooth and electric front mirrors. Compared to the sensationally basic entry-level Ford Ka models of old, it’s like living in a science fantasy film!
As the cheapest model in Ford’s extensive lineup, you might expect the Ka+ to feel a bit budget.
The interior design is classy and robust, the soundproofing is decent, reducing wind and road noise to a dull hum and the driver's seat is comfortable and supportive.
On the road, the Ka+ feels smooth, ironing out all but the roughest of roads. The steering, as you’d expect from a city car, is superbly light and precise. Combine that with a wide windscreen and wing mirrors and you’ve got a car that can nip through traffic like a dainty rabbit.
Under the bonnet, you’ve not got too much choice. Well, you might say you’ve got two choice(s).
(Okay, I’ll cut the jokes and stick to reviewing.)
There’s two engines on offer (technically two versions of the same engine), which produce either 69bhp or 84bhp. They're both nippy on city streets but struggle to get up to motorway speeds without mashing the accelerator to the floor. The less powerful engine takes somewhere in the region of 16 seconds to go from 0-62mph, which really isn't the best.
The flip side to a smaller engine is good fuel economy. With an official fuel efficiency of 56.6MPG and real world performance between 40 and 55MPG, the Ka+ is good but not exceptional.
All in all, I really like the Ford Ka+ and think they made the right choice to re-engineer the car as a slimmed down Ford Fiesta. With a big boot, spacious interior and great driving experience, it's is a great choice whether you’re looking for a dinky city car or a larger supermini.