FORD has sold more than 16 million Focus models globally since it was first launched 20 years ago, a total which underlines what a great all-round car it is, appealing to both family and business customers.
The latest Focus builds on that reputation, offering more space and enhanced driving dynamics. There are petrol and diesel versions with varying power outputs, and eight trim levels, enabling buyers to in effect tailor their car to suit their specific needs. Prices start at €20,895 (£18,300) for the entry ‘Style’ version which has adequate standard equipment, though most sales come from the better equipped mid-range models.
My test model was in Titanium X trim, costing €26,410 (£23,130) with a 1.0 litre EcoBoost turbo-petrol engine. This three-cylinder unit still delivers a punchy 124 hp with a 0-100 kph time of 10 seconds. Top speed is 200 kph (124 mph) and emissions are 111 g/km. Average fuel economy is very good at 20.4 kpl (57.6 mpg).
This Focus is impressively nippy and agile, with light precise steering and an excellent suspension set up which delivers ride comfort which arguably is the best in the class. While not quick off the mark, the engine has useful mid-range power which aids safe overtaking, and the 6-speed manual gearbox has a slick action.
Exterior styling is sleek and the cabin is quite spacious with enough room on the rear seat for three occupants without having to squeeze. Boot space is a generous 375 litres, 50 litres larger than the previous model. The dashboard layout is logical and user-friendly and the overall impression is of a well-sorted car which delivers outstanding practicality and versatility.
Standard kit on the Titanium X includes alloy wheels, privacy glass, front and rear parking sensors, cruise control, heated front seats, digital radio, Bluetooth, sat-nav, and smartphone mirroring. Safety features include lane-keeping aid, pedestrian and cyclist detection and pre-collision assist.
The Focus has many rivals family hatchback sector, most notably the VW Golf. While the Focus perhaps doesn’t have the same cool image as the Golf, it can match it in many other respects and deserves to be on the short-list of anyone planning to buy a new family hatchback.
Model tested is UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.
Model: Ford Focus Titanium X
Engine. 1.0 litre petrol
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Performance: 0-100 kph 10 seconds, top speed 200 kph (124 mph)
Economy: 20.4 kpl (57.6 mpg)
Emissions: 11 g/km