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History of the Ford Fiesta - the Mk1, 1976 - 1983

Since first rolling of the production line in 1976, more than 17 million Ford Fiesta cars have found homes worldwide.

Ford have developed a car that is as fresh and innovative now as it was when it hit the tarmac for the first time. The Ford Fiesta remains the one of the top-10 best-selling cars in Europe and remains one of the United Kingdom's top sellers.
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The Ford Fiesta Mk1 was the first Fiesta to enter the market in Europe in 1976. It was the first front-wheel drive Ford vehicle available, and was the only second hatchback mini-car to have been built at the time in the UK available from £1856. The Mk1 was available as a 3-door hatchback and 3-door panel van, with a series featuring Base, Popular, Popular Plus, L, GL, Ghia and S trim.


The Mk1 is quite famous for being available in Europe before the UK. Valencia were the first to experience the new Fiesta in September 1976. Shortly after in January 1977, UK drivers could get their hands on the Mk1 Fiesta.

This Fiesta had immediate success and was Britain's best-selling supermini by 1978. Over a million Fiesta's had been sold by Ford by 1980 and the selling did not stop there. Over 2 million were sold by 1982 and this made it Britain's best-selling car at the time. Also, the Mk1 was one of the main cars to be a part of the new Motability scheme which came about in 1978.
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The Fiesta Mk1 had the following iconic features:

  • 4-speed manual gearbox
  • 12-inch wheels
  • A top speed of 81mph
  • Ability to go 0-60mph in 19.1 seconds
  • MPG - 41.5
  • A choice of 0.9 and 1.1-litre petrol engines, with a 1.3-litre coming later

In 1980, the Ford Fiesta XR2 was released. Using a 1.6-litre engine, it had been designed to provide an exciting driving experience and quickly became a boy racers' dream. It was not particularly quick, but it did provide an enjoyable drive, going from 0-60mph in 9.3 seconds with a top speed of 105mph. The XR2 also featured unique round headlights to make it stand out from the rest.
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Book A Test Drive in the latest Ford Fiesta with Haynes Ford:
We have demonstration vehicles available for you to test drive and experience the technology of the New Fiesta for yourself. Fill out the form below to book your test drive appointment today.

Haynes Ford are one of the very few Family run Ford Dealerships in the country and we have always recognised the vital importance of providing our customers with not only outstanding value but excellent customer service, a factor which has resulted in us receiving numerous awards.

Our friendly, fully Ford trained and helpful sales team can offer advice on the finance options available, as well as recommend what specification would be of most benefit to you. We can also deal with any of your Motability questions through our fully trained sales advisors.

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