The Ford Classic long termer has carried us through almost all kinds of terrains, weather conditions and traffic situations. And here we share the kind of companion the Classic sedan has been to us, the bright side and dull side.
We have already talked about the Ford Classic’s looks and features in the 2,000 km City Drive Review, so let us skip ahead to the behaviour of the car in various scenarios.
On an average day, under outside temperature of around 30 degrees, the car acts very normally and nothing about the machine is trying. The air conditioning can initially be in second speed then moved to first, with temperature set to full cold. The AC unit being one of the most praised equipment in almost all Ford cars here, works extremely well in the Classic as well. The sedan does not have a rear blower or AC vent, yet the reach to the rear part of cabin is commendable provided the dashboard vents are pointed right. Even on an extremely hot day, the AC never ceases to cool down our temper.
The seat upholstery is a very soft fabric that retains heat when parked under shining sunlight, but does not sweat the occupant’s back much when rested for a long time, say on a long drive. There are two notable negative points about the Ford Classic’s seats, one, they have an affinity to hold dust and loose hair, which also means they get dirty pretty quickly, and second, the front seats need some getting used to, for those who have even a little above average torso size. The seats are scooped for rather slim persons, which annoys people with broad body when they try to get into a comfortable position. The side and thigh supports are the ones in particular that need some getting used to, and in a while you really would forget about them.
The cushions are very thick and offer really good dampening, even while hitting a very bad bump on the road. It is only when you go extremely out of the way to receive a thud underneath the car, you would feel anything through the seats. Otherwise, on bad roads, you will only hear and mostly not feel anything on the body.
Thanks to the brilliantly tuned shocks and suspension of Ford Classic, the car offers a near-ideal balance between ride quality and handling. Comfort on all seats inside the car is even and appreciable, no matter the road condition and speed.
The only downside here is that the Classic pitches a bit too much while climbing up and down a huge speed breaker. If you’re above the speed limit on such a bump, you would notice all the shocks bottoming-out and will put a sense of fear in everybody riding inside. This would seem to be the case with most cars out there, but the point is that the Ford Classic has above average suspension play.
But the same setup doesn’t turn out to be too much of a stretch when it comes to attacking corners and racing left and right through maze of a traffic. Ford Classic maintains a brilliant harmony between its steering and suspension, which bagged the car the tag ‘driver’s car’. It is colloquially also referred to as a poor man’s BMW.
And for a car powered by just 68 bhp and 160 Nm producing engine, the machine is incredible ready to pounce. Crossing the 2,000 rpm barrier until when turbo lag is seriously felt (also considering the age of the car in terms of miles), the Classic gives the driver a mild shot of adrenaline, pushing the rest of cars on road behind. The downside here is once you get into that mode, you should never let the engine rev down below the 2,000 rpm mark, otherwise all the rush just dives off a cliff in no time. This is the clear rev mark differentiating eco and sport driving. To browse the city streets, all the power offered below that point is pretty much enough, which also helps fetch decent mileage.
Driving extremely conscious to keep the tacho needle below the 2k line, we could manage only around 14.5 kmpl in the city, crossing frequently which the mileage dips even down to around 12.5 kmpl. In highway, in usual cruising speeds, the car delivers around 18 kmpl mileage. Ford Classic is indeed capable of higher speeds, with a little patience, the sedan manages really high speeds even with 5 occupants. And the surprising note is that the car is admirably stable even then. Steering didn’t get phenomenally softer or out of control, and chassis-suspension behaviour was also not instilling much fear in the driver.
Overall, Ford Classic is not just a car with a long history and testimony, it has proven itself to be a reliable companion, not generating as much of bills a diesel car of its age is assumed to churn out. Price of Ford Classic ranges between Rs. 5.06 lakhs to Rs. 7.68 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi), and is available with petrol and diesel variants. The model is expected to be discontinued with the advent of Ford Figo Aspire compact sedan, but there is no official word yet.