Orders are now been taken for the new Ford Focus Estate which will be hitting UK Ford Dealers forecourts at the end of May 2011.
It should account for 15% of all Ford Focus Sales in the UK and over 30% in Europe.
The engine line-up includes a new 150PS 1.6-litre Ford EcoBoost turbocharged direct injection petrol engine, and a choice of revised Duratorq TDCi common-rail diesel engines, all of which offer significant reductions in fuel consumption compared to the outgoing model.
In addition to the petrol and diesel engines, the new Ford Focus range also incorporates other features from Ford ECOnetic technologies to help minimise fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Which means that cars fitted with the 1.6-litre Ford EcoBoost petrol and 1.6-litre TDCi diesel engines are equipped with standard Auto-Start-Stop, meaning CO2 emissions at 109g/km on the diesel model – as they say every little bit helps.
At 2,648mm, the estate shares the same wheelbase as the five-door model, but to accommodate a larger load area, overall length is increased by 198mm to 4,556mm.
With the rear seats in place the estate has a large, regular load compartment, with a volume of 476 litres. The rear seats split on a 60/40 basis and have a convenient ‘flip and fold’ mechanism to tip the seat cushion forward and create a flat load platform with the seat backs. In two-seat mode, the maximum load capacity is increased to 1,502 litres.
Impressively the new Ford Focus Estate can be specified with a number of features only recently seen on high end cars such a BMW.
- Low Speed Safety System – available for the first time in a Ford, this system is designed to help drivers avoid the kind of low speed collision when a car drives into the rear of the vehicle in front. It uses a forward-facing infra-red laser mounted next to the rear view mirror to detect objects in front of the car. If the system foresees that a collision is imminent, it pre-charges the brakes. If the driver does not react, the brakes are then automatically applied and the throttle is released.
- ActiveParkAssist– an advanced new system which automatically steers the vehicle into parallel parking spaces. The system uses two ultrasonic sensors to scan for large enough gaps between parked cars. Once a suitable gap has been identified, the driver is informed and clear parking instructions are shown in the centre console display. The driver controls the accelerator and brake, and selects a forward or reverse gear, while the system turns the steering wheel completely automatically.
- Lane Departure Warning – using a forward facing digital camera, this feature is designed to warn the driver via a vibration in the steering wheel if it detects an unintentional drift out of the lane. The camera system continuously monitors the vehicle’s position relative to the road markings. If the vehicle drifts from the centre of the lane, and the system does not detect an obvious lane-change manoeuvre or use of the indicators, the vibration alert is triggered.
- Lane Keeping Aid– this advanced feature extends the functionality of the Lane Departure Warning system by using the steering system to actively steer the vehicle very smoothly and precisely back into the lane, rather than just triggering an alert.
- Traffic Sign Recognition – this system uses the digital camera to identify traffic signs on either side of the road and on bridges, providing the driver with information about the latest detected speed limit, cancellation signs and overtaking regulations via the instrument cluster display.
- Auto High Beam– this feature switches the headlamps automatically between high beam and dipped beam, helping the driver to maximise visibility.
- Driver Alert– this system uses the digital camera to detect when a driver is becoming tired or even falling asleep. By monitoring the vehicle’s position relative to the road markings, the system can recognise the kind of sideways drifting which is typical when a driver is feeling drowsy or their concentration levels start to drop. If this is detected, the system alerts the driver.
We hope to bring you a review of the new Ford Focus Estate later in the year. Prices and more information are available for your local Ford Dealer.Published 5 April 2011