1.6 Duratorq TDCi 115PS Zetec
550 Ford of Britain dealerships
around the UK, the all-new Ford
Focus five-door hatchbacks are
ready and waiting for customers.
Prices start from £15,995...
THIS IS THE FIFTH GENERATION Focus since the original was launched in 1998
and to date 10 million of them have been sold worldwide 1.4 million
of them bought by British buyers, making the UK Ford's largest single
market for the Focus.
This latest Focus will be one of ten different model ranges to use Ford's new
'C car' platform, with two million being produced worldwide. Already this year
Ford has launched the new C-Max and Grand C-Max MPVs, both of which use the
has introduced the all-new Focus hatch with a choice of three petrol and four
diesel engines and there is a simplified range of equipment levels; Edge,
which will account for 20 per cent of sales; Zetec 55 per cent; Titanium 17
per cent; and Titanium X with 8 per cent.
addition, there's a huge array of new technology extra-cost options that, if
chosen by customers, will make these the most technically-advanced mainstream
Focus cars ever.
The most significant of these is the £750 Driver Assistance Pack which includes
a low-speed safety system, lane departure warning, lane-keeping aid, driver
alert monitoring, traffic speed sign recognition, auto high beam headlight dimming
and blind spot information.
until now this smart technology has not been readily available for cars in the
Focus class BMW, for instance, offer some of these functions on their
7 Series, but priced from £1,110 upwards.
Driver Assistance Pack
includes a low-speed
lane departure warning,
driver alert monitoring,
speed sign recognition,
auto high beam
and blind spot
The starter Edge version costs £500 more than the outgoing model but has added
equipment worth over £1,000 now fitted as standard. Other versions show price
increases of between three and five per cent, some of which is the result on
the increase in VAT but the rest reflects the extra equipment and new engine
The Edge has air conditioning, electrically-operated front windows and door
mirrors, remote central locking, stability control, front, side and curtain
airbags, Ford's 'easy fuel' system, mini-spare wheel, DAB Radio, Bluetooth with
voice control and USB connection, alarm and integrated rear spoiler.
Zetec models see the addition of 16-inch alloy wheels, Quickclear heated front
screen, front fog lights, sports-style front seats and heated door mirrors.
Titanium and Titanium X versions see higher levels of additional specification
ranging from cruise control to 17-inch wheels and much more.
The petrol engine line-up confirmed so far is 1.6 TI-VCT with 103/123bhp power
outputs and the new 1.6 EcoBoost 147bhp unit (with a 1.6 EcoBoost 179bhp unit
arriving in June). Both these engines have Start-Stop. Diesel engines are 1.6
TDCi 93/113bhp with Start-Stop and 2.0 TDCi with 138/160bhp outputs. Powershift
twin-clutch auto transmissions are available for both 2.0-litre TDCi units.
With the price of diesel fuel now considerably more than petrol, Ford expects
the domination of diesel sales for Focus to weaken and to become a 50:50 split
between petrol and diesel with the 1.6-litre petrol and diesel units being the
most popular overall.
says that after taking the purchase price, VED road tax, BIK company car tax
and fuel consumption into account, retail buyers or fleet users covering over
15,000 miles a year will find the diesel version slightly more cost-effective
to run. Lower mileage users will most likely go for either of the petrol units
with the new 1.6-litre turbocharged direct injection EcoBoost version having
increasing appeal because it offers performance or fuel economy modes depending
on the mood of the driver.
benefit of the 1.6 TDCi turbodiesel 113bhp unit is that it is available right
across the hatchback's specification range with prices starting at £17,495 for
the Edge version and topping out at £21,245 for the Titanium X variant.
1.6 EcoBoost 147bhp petrol unit is available only with Titanium and Titanium
X levels of 'spec' with prices of £19,745 and £21,245 respectively exactly
the same price as the 1.6-litre TDCi models with those specifications.
my test driving
on Scotlands winter-
unit returned an
for some fairly sedate
but still realistic
against the official
During my brief test driving on Scotland's winter-ravaged roads, the 113bhp
1.6-litre TDCi unit returned an impressive 58.9mpg for some fairly sedate
but still realistic speed driving against the official 67.3mpg figure.
The CO2 emissions are 109g/km mysteriously too high to make it exempt
from the London Congestion Charge but low enough for VED road tax to be £0 in
the First Year and only £20 per annum after that. With a top speed of 120mph
and zero to 62mph taking 10.9 seconds, performance was workmanlike.
Driven over the same test route, the 147bhp 1.6 EcoBoost direct injection turbocharged
petrol engine returned 42.3mpg down on the official 47.1mpg. Its CO2
emissions are 139g/km so VED road tax is £110. Top speed is 130mph and 0-62mph
acceleration 8.6 seconds the zippier performer when required but with
the potential for getting very good fuel economy without compromise.
However, for some low mileage buyers the best option will remain the slightly
slower 1.6-litre TI-VCT 103 or 123bhp petrol units, both quoted as returning
47.9mpg and with marginally lower CO2 emissions of 136g/km than the 1.6 EcoBoost
petrol unit. VED charges are the same but the purchase prices are lower, starting
Unfortunately this 1.6 TI-VCT engine was not available for testing at the launch
disappointing as it will figure highly with financially hard-pressed
private drivers. For any owner covering less than 15,000 miles a year it offers
the best financial option with the lowest purchase price in what has become
a relatively expensive range of family cars. On a positive note, residual values
for the new Focus are 6 per cent higher than for the previous models.
for the styling, well the Ford 'Kinetic' design programme has been continued
from the Fiesta and new C-Max and Grand C-Max models. Indeed, the Focus looks
like a larger version of the Fiesta. Its
sharp angular lines blend well with its muscular stance on the road and the
coupe side profile. At 1,484mm high, 4,358mm long and 1,823mm wide (without
mirrors), the new five-door is 16mm lower, 21mm longer and 16mm narrower than
the outgoing Focus.
However, its wheelbase is longer (at 2,648mm) so rear seat legroom is better.
That said, the rear seats are still better suited for two rather than three
adults but three children will feel comfortable. Incidentally, boot and load
space with the mini-spare wheel is 316 to 1,101 litres.
thick front A-pillars just like the Fiesta and the large door
mirrors do reduce front-quarter visibility on bends and road junctions and the
rear tailgate window is not the largest in this sector.
the new Focus
and compatible with its
potential to be classed
as a premium
The interior quality is hugely improved, with soft-feel finishes for the dashboard,
centre console and steering wheel. And inside, the new Focus feels 'crafted'
rather than just assembled and compatible with its potential to be classed as
a 'premium' car.
All the instrumentation appeared to be logical (once I had become acquainted
with it) and our test cars had many of the very advanced technology options
fitted to them, which took some understanding and getting used to but they certainly
do work to make driving safer.
The Zetec level of specification looks the best and most sensible option to
me; the upper centre console of the Titanium version looked too complicated,
with low-rent plastic finishes and small push-buttons. Also, Zetec models on
standard 16-inch alloy wheels 'ride' much better than the larger 17 and 18-inch
There will be a few moans and groans that the 'global' Focus has lost its outright
superiority in the sharp handling department; nevertheless, it is decidedly
more comfortable and roomy and much improved for overall driving refinement.
The suspension now irons out most potholes and any noise intrusion from the
wheels or engine is very low.
The electronic power steering (adopted to reduce energy consumption), whilst
accurate, is not as sharp and doesn't offer enough feel or feed-back for spirited
driving but for most customers it will not be a consideration I would
have preferred bit more communication with steering responses. There is a high
degree of cornering grip and the car feels well balanced and the sophisticated
traction control and torque vectoring differential systems operating in conjunction
with the ABS braking perform really well.
The good news? Better looking, better built, crafted high-quality interior,
a mass of driving support technologies and comfortable. Against? Looks pricey,
dull steering and some people will consider that the ride comfort has been obtained
at the expense of its former best-in-class sharp and agile handling.
Ford Focus 5-dr 1.6 Duratorq TDCi 115PS Zetec | £18,495
Maximum speed: 120mph | 0-62mph: 10.9 seconds | Overall Test MPG:
Power: 113bhp | Torque: 199lb ft | CO2 109g/km