Ford got it Ka so right back in 1996 that the design remains virtually unchanged eight years on. It's cheap to buy and run, fun to drive and highly distinctive.
- A characterful, high value used choice
- Nimble handling, good ride, fun to drive
- 40+ mpg, low insurance and service costs
- Rear accommodation is for two only
- SportKa isn't worth the price premium
- Not much equipment on basic 1.3 models
Smaller than the Fiesta on which it's based, Ka packs comfort and clever design into a cabin that's roomy for two adults up front and snug for two kids in the back. Load space is restricted with the rear seat-backs up.
Ka wins out in this class for ride and handling. It likes being driven spiritedly, thanks to agile responses, assured grip and accurate power steering. The elderly eight-valve 1.3 litre 60 bhp engine limits outright performance (it was uprated to 70 bhp in 2002) but keeps up with normal traffic and only gets harsh at higher revs.
With used prices starting below £2000, insurance in Groups 2 or 3, 45 mpg, low service costs and good reliability, Ka appeals as a budget runabout or first car. Equipment is sparse on the basic Ka; Ka-2 and upwards come with central locking and electric windows; and Ka-3 has standard air con.
Need To Know
NCAP: 3 Stars
Best Models: Ka-2, Collection models, luxuryKa
Worst Models: Basic Ka without PAS
Quality & Reliability
Value for Money