Thursday 21 September 2017

Fresh Focus just arrived as Ford hikes production

Fresh look: The revised Ford Focus has just gone on sale after getting a makeover.
Fresh look: The revised Ford Focus has just gone on sale after getting a makeover.
Ford Focus cabin
Eddie Cunningham

Eddie Cunningham

I don't know if it is a sign of general economic recovery or the car's appeal - probably both - but Ford is increasing the number of Focus models it is making by 240 a day.

Ford's factory in Saarlouis, Germany last month began increasing daily production levels due to increased demand across Europe, according to Ford.

They are now making 1,770 each day.

The revised model has just gone on sale here - prices start from €20,295 with delivery and related charges extra.

There is a 5dr hatch, a 4dr saloon and an estate and there are four trim levels: Focus, Style, Zetec and range-topping Titanium.

They have tweaked a number of areas to freshen its looks.

For example, there is a new bonnet, grille and front fascia.

And they say they have increased structural stiffness at the front to give a more solid feedback to the driver.

The electric power steering has been retuned as well.

Engines include the tried-and-tested 1.6-litre (95PS, 115PS) and 2-litre diesels (150PS).

And the much vaunted 1-litre EcoBoost petrol (100PS, 125PS) is also an option.

Standard equipment across the range includes electric front windows, Hill-Launch Assist, MyKey (second generation) and electric door mirrors.

Style trim level adds air con, Ford SYNC, CD player with USB connectivity, electric/heated door mirrors, and 16ins alloys.

In Zetec trim you additionally get front fogs, sports-tuned suspension, centre console with armrest, sports-style front seats and 'quickclear' windscreen.

And finally the Titanium versions have 16ins alloys, cruise control including speed limiter, dual-zone auto temperature control, keyless start, front/rear electric windows and front/rear LED reading lights.

Among the options are 'perpendicular parking' assist.

This, they say, is a hands-free way of parking.

They claim the car effectively parks itself by making it much easier to reverse into spaces.

Additional sensors also mean the system warns you when you are reversing out of a parking space if another vehicle is likely to be passing by.

It has a radar range of up to 40 metres and issues three warning signals if it senses another vehicle coming while you are backing out.

We're not finished yet . . . They have 'Park-Out Assist' too. This helps you as you leave a parallel parking space. When you have chosen where to park, the system works the steering while you work the accelerator and brake.

Such technology in a mainstream family car was the stuff of fantasy way back when the first Focus arrived here back in 1999. They have sold more than 115,000 since.

Mind you, at the time it was a near-revolution for Ford to bring out such a dramatically designed small-family car. Now it's a staple diet of the segment.

And no doubt with all that increased production they expect people to keep on buying it in substantial numbers for quite a while yet.

Indo Motoring

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