• Sep 1st 2006 at 6:33PM
  • 20

The Ford Ka went on sale September 11, 1996. Over the last ten years, it's sold over one million units in a dizzying array of trim levels (special models have been quite common throughout its run). Oddly fetching even though it resembles an Air Jordan with wheels, the Ka's exterior appearance has remained unchanged throughout, save for minor tweaks like more athletic bodywork on the SportKa. Its New Edge styling has shown remarkable staying power and has even spawned the great-looking StreetKa roadster, which is marketed as a standalone, upmarket product.

Ford has updated the cars under the skin (for instance, a new wiring system was introduced in 2005, enabling them to offer higher levels of equipment), and the interior has seen every treatment imaginable -- from basic cloth seats and few options to fully-loaded, leather-swathed luxury. Two four-cylinder gasoline engines provide the cars' motivation -- a 1.3L (70hp / 45mpg) and a 1.6L (94hp / 35mpg). The bigger motor sees duty in the more performance-oriented SportKa and StreetKa.

For MY 2007, the UK gets seven different Ka models -- and that's not including the StreetKa, which is sold as a separate vehicle altogether. After 10 years, it doesn't look like the Ka's going to leave us anytime soon. Happy Birthday, little guy.

(Pics, Release after the jump)

[Source: Ford]

Ford StreetKa
StreetKa Interior

Interior - Ford Ka Sublime
Ka Interior


10 years of success for ford ka: latest model PRICED lower than in 1996

* Ford Ka celebrates 10 years of success
* 383, 261 Ka models have been sold
* The iconic design has kept it as segment leader for its lifetime
* The latest Ka models hit showrooms this month. Entry model is £255 cheaper than the first model sold 10 years ago
* Top of the range Sportka now £305 less and Luxury £700 less than previous models

BRENTWOOD, Essex, 1 September, 2006 – Britain's best-selling supermini, the Ford Ka, celebrates 10 years of success this month. A new Ka line-up arrives in showrooms across Britain, once again enhancing the range and specifications and offering great value. At £7,095, the entry model of the new line-up costs £255 less than the first Ka sold 10 years ago.

The new Ka line-up has seven models from the entry level Studio to the Sportka SE. Ka is popular with a diverse range of customers, from the student to the grandparent and so the range caters for many needs. The new line-up starts at £7,095 on-the-road for a Studio model, to £9,995 for the Sportka SE.

Mark Ovenden, marketing director, Ford of Britain said: "Today's Ka driver still loves the funky look of Ka but also wants more technology and luxury. We have added a higher specification to the mid-range models and greater value in the high-end models to cater for this.

"In its lifetime, Ka has gone from a basic runaround to the kind of car customers can personalise with everything from air conditioning to two tone leather trim. Price is a key consideration for the supermini car buyer and that's why value is the mainstay of the new models," he added.

The new seven- model line- up is:

Studio – £7,095 on-the-road entry level with ABS, immobiliser, tinted glass, silver sports-style dials, driver's airbag, radio/cassette, and power steering.

Style – at £7, 395 on-the-road, with body coloured bumpers and door mirrors, CD player, central locking, electric windows and remote boot release.

Style Climate – at £7, 995 on-the-road, Style Climate has air conditioning, Quickclear heated front windscreen and power, heated mirrors.

Zetec – at £7,995 on-the-road, this model is £600 less than the previous Ka Collection model. It has alloy wheels, rear spoiler, remote central locking, scuff plates, leather gear knob and steering wheel.

Zetec Climate – at £8,595 on-the-road, this model adds air conditioning, quickclear heated front windscreen and power, heated mirrors to the already well-specified Zetec.

Luxury – the ultimate Ka at £9,195 on-the-road, this model adds leather trim, carpet mats, chrome grille and exhaust. This is £1,100 less than the outgoing model.

Sportka SE – the sports model topping the range is £9,995 on-the-road and has a punchy 1.6-litre engine with added torque. This is £305 less than the outgoing model. SportKa SE is fully equipped with 16" alloy wheels, two-tone leather seats, air conditioning, CD player and Quickclear heated front windscreen.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      I'm not kidding when I say that I'd buy a SportKa SE in a heartbeat if it were offered in L.A.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Yes, I love it... Got a Ka XR (1.6 liter). It's my daily commuter and it's a joy to drive. Gonna take brand new one as soon as possible!

      • 9 Years Ago
      They just canceled their minivans. Ford Europe has two great compact minivans in the Focus and galaxey models, more akin to the Mazda5. They ought to get a jump on this new segment. Honda has vans this size at home, and since honda and toyata seem to be able to certify their cars at the drop of a hat this segment may become jambed before you know it.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Re Yaroukh:

      Sean is not the only one who sees elements of the Audi TT in the StreetKa's styling. Many of the road tests done in British car mags have mentioned the StreetKa's resemblance to the Audi.

      By the way, a year ago the StreetKa was priced at 13,000 pounds Sterling or about $20,000...with a few options it comes close to V6 Mustang coupes in price. The regular (plain?) Ka is a better value, priced at what a Focus stickers for here in the U.S.
      • 9 Years Ago
      This car is cool, what is so hard about bringing it over hear. Honda, Nissan, and Toyota did it seemingly "overnight" c'mon Ford listen!!!

      You can see the front end inspired the 1st gen front end of the Focus, they would have been perfect introduced at the same time!

      Wasn't this waaaay before the Audi TT? Or did not drop top come out later?
      • 9 Years Ago
      This should be the machine that FORD could sell here in the U.S. instead of trying to devise a new "B" car, such as the Yaris/Accent/Rio/Fit/etc, from scratch.

      FORD: WAKE UP!!! You're heading no where fast.

      • 9 Years Ago
      This is the Honda Fit figher Ford could have here. In covertible form too.
      • 9 Years Ago
      My mum is driving a 1996 ka with the older 1.3L 60hp emdura-e engine: it's still running fine! It has birthday on 30/10 (tenth of october).
      The next generation of the ka will be built together with fiat to their 500 on panda platform.
      • 9 Years Ago
      lol looks like a frog
      • 9 Years Ago
      Almost forgot to tell you guys: my 1.6 liter Ka runs on gasoline and CNG (compressed natural gas) - 140 miles with US$ 6.85 (don't know if this is a lot, but here it sure is) and even on CNG it goes like stink! Call AutoblogGreen! I'll send some pics of it, along with a story about the success of CNG in Brazil.
      • 9 Years Ago
      I agree with whofan, why can't they figure out that a lot of the cars that Ford and GM sell overseas would do well here? Do they have a bunch of SUV lovers in their "focus groups"? What is going on here? I wish someone from Ford or GM could answer why....
      • 9 Years Ago
      This car sort of changed my opinion of Ford when I tried it many years ago. I was really shocked to find out that it was really good. It handles well and the engine was good. I agree that the new Ka which will share parts and design with the new Fiat 500 should be offered in the US. The old Ka, the current Fiesta and most Fiat small cars are fun to drive and there is no doubt that the new ones are going to be good. Ford should retool a plant in the US and start manufacturing it unchanged from the Euro version. They need to start preparing for it NOW.
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