The fun factor: Ford Fiesta, Honda Jazz or Toyota Vios?

Help our letter sender decide
by Botchi Santos | Nov 24, 2010

Hi, Botchi!

I need your help. I just sold my car and I need a replacement soon. My options are the Ford Fiesta, Honda Jazz and the Toyota Vios.

The Ford Fiesta has the biggest displacement among the three, and has more gizmos and new features. It's selling at P816,000 for the top-of-the-line variant.  I know you are a big fan of the Jazz and I was once convinced that it should be my next car. The Fiesta, however, is hard to ignore.

I'm also concerned about the Fiesta's reliability in the long run--something which the Jazz has already proven.

Another thing the Jazz wins over the Fiesta is its ULT (utility-, long-, tall-mode) seating. The Fiesta is also P26,000 cheaper than the top-of-the-line Jazz.

I can also go for the safe choice and get the top-of-the-line Toyota Vios. It's the cheapest and easiest to pay among the three and with its proven track record on reliability and ease of use I’m sure I won’t go wrong with it.

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Resale value of Hondas and Toyota are pretty solid. I am just not sure about the Ford. The thing about the Vios is that it is too common and doesn't have that excitement factor I can get from the Fiesta or the Jazz.

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Hope you can help me decide.

Thanks in advance, Botchi.


Hi, Bryan!

Thanks for writing to Top Gear

Yup, I am a big fan of the Honda Jazz because the whole package is hard to beat. Only the price is disappointing.

The Ford Fiesta is a very good proposition indeed but when I tried it on for size, I found it tight getting in and out. It's roomy enough once you’re inside though. Blame the Japanese obsession for wanting to make small cars van-like with their tall headroom and equally tall doors. As you know I'm a big sexy beast so I need my space getting in and out of cars. However, you might be in a different weight class so that might not be an issue for you.

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I do like the idea of a small car with a modestly large engine, which the Fiesta has, so I'm sure that on a straight line it will be fast--if not the fastest in its class.

My brother's Honda Jazz 1.5 kicks the arse of a stock Yaris in an impromptu drag race. The Jazz also handles better and has bigger cargo space. My lightly modified Yaris can barely counter-attack and only wins against the Jazz because my brother will get a bloody nose if I don’t win the race.

I feel the Fiesta 1.6 will own the arses of both Japanese hatchbacks. The only good thing about the Yaris is the price--being significantly cheaper than both cars for the top-model. There’s also an option of the handsome and aggressive RS bodykit available from Toyota. If you want to leave it stock though, the Yaris does look a bit shy compared to the confident Jazz and the funky Fiesta. 

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Unfortunately I haven't had the pleasure of driving the Fiesta. There's a long queue for the Fiesta test drives at the moment both for prospective customers and the media but if gymkhana and rally champ Ken Block chose this over his previous ride, then the base foundation of his fire-breathing car must be quite good. After all, you can only modify a car so much to perform better if the engineering and chassis dynamics isn't up to par. 

As for the Vios? Yep, great car, ultra-reliable and cheap to own, thanks to Toyota's lease-to-own program, but it’s a boring choice as well. In this highly competitive segment, a boring car is the last thing you'll want!

So what do you think? Lets us know and keep in touch!

Take care, God bless and more power!

Botchi Santos
Consumer editor

Lost in a sea of cars and not quite sure which one to get? Click here to email your car query so Botchi can help you pick the right vehicle!

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