Launched in 1976, the Fiesta entered a growing and vibrant market. With key rivals already well established, it was up against strong opposition, but had the benefit of being new, smartly styled and offered with a wide range of trim and engine choices. Combine its showroom appeal with the reassurance of the Ford name and success was assured. By early 1977, it had third place in the UK sales charts and was performing strongly across Europe, where its light controls made it an excellent city car. On the open road, Fiesta offered a big car feel with a spacious, well laid out interior, boasting nimble handling and secure roadholding. The Ford was a rounded product then but while it gave the established names a hard time, it was far from perfect.