Christmas likely came early for at least a few fans of small, fuel-efficient cars: The first 2014 Ford Fiesta 1.0-liter EcoBoost cars were delivered to customers late last year.
With its 1.0-liter turbocharged three-cylinder gasoline engine and five-speed manual transmission, the 2014 Fiesta is EPA-rated at 37 mpg combined (32 mpg city, 45 mpg highway).
Those numbers come close to those of the 1.0-liter Fiesta's main rival, the 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage. Equipped with a 1.2-liter three-cylinder and CVT, the Mirage is rated at 40 mpg combined (37 mpg city, 44 mpg highway).
The automatic transmission definitely helps the little Mitsubishi; with a five-speed manual, the numbers for the Mirage recede to 37 mpg combined (24 mpg city, 42 mpg highway).
2014 Ford Fiesta 5-door
The 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine is sold as a $995 "SE Manual EcoBoost" package on the Fiesta SE, which is one trim level up from the base S model.
That brings the cost of entry to $17,240 for a sedan, and $17,840 for the hatchback, including destination.
That price also nets 15-inch steel wheels, a regenerative braking system, EcoBoost badges, and a rear decklid spoiler for the sedan.
That's a bit cheaper than the 1.6-liter four-cylinder Fiesta SFE fuel-economy special, which is offered with Ford's six-speed dual-clutch automated transmission and is rated at 34 mpg combined (30 mpg city, 41 mpg highway).
The SFE package itself costs $95, but the obligatory dual-clutch transmission adds $1,095 to the base price.
Meanwhile, the Mitsubishi Mirage starts at $13,790 for a manual-equipped DE model; upgrading to the priciest CVT-equipped ES costs $15,990. It's worth noting that it's considerably slower and less fun to drive than the 1.0-liter Fiesta.
Are you clearing a (small) spot in your driveway for a 2014 Ford Fiesta 1.0-liter EcoBoost? Or does the 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage sound like a more attractive option?
Leave us your thoughts in the Comments below.