Chevrolet (NYSE:GM) has been seen putting its new, revamped Cruze compact sedan through its paces, but upon release, it will have to contend with Ford’s (NYSE:F) freshly renewed Focus. More than a pretty face, Ford seems to think that the new Focus will be among the most advanced vehicles in its class.
First things first. The Focus has obviously gotten an updated front fascia, evoking the design language that is becoming increasingly commonplace on Ford’s global options. Its headlights have been slightly elongated and now take more after those found on the 2015 Mustang and seemingly less than the Fusion midsize sedan. The grille, however, takes after the latter.
Accentuated fog light housings and a splitter-style floor of the front bumper give the Focus a far sportier and aggressive appearance than its segment demands, but as shown with its Fusion, the formula appears to be working wonders for Ford.
The back has been adjusted as well, though perhaps not to the same extent. The rear lights are different but wholly similar to the outgoing model; the raked rear window and and muscular haunches help give the new Focus a planted, forward-leaning stance, which makes the car look aggressive beyond its performance bracket. It will only get better, we expect, with the new ST variant of this new car.
“We have taken the title of world’s best-selling nameplate to impressive new heights with the redesigned Focus,” Joe Hinrichs, Ford’s executive vice president and president of the Americas, said in the company’s statement. “Its combination of compelling, modern design and the most high-tech interior in the class will appeal to contemporary consumers who desire a small car with very sophisticated features.”
Under the hood, Ford has implanted the 1-liter EcoBoost engine, which can also be found in the Fiesta subcompact. This means better fuel economy for consumers and for Ford, possibly a better handle on the compact car market.
“The 1.0 liter EcoBoost engine is proof that excellent fuel economy and performance can come in one package,” said Raj Nair, Ford’s group vice president of global product development. “Focus is already known for bringing together efficiency and fun, and our latest addition will bring consumers a whole new level of enjoyment — on the road and at the pump.”
Though it’s new to the U.S., the small EcoBoost engine is already well acquainted in Europe. Ford says that the 1-liter EcoBoost accounts for 32 percent of sales of the current-generation Focus and 26 percent of sales for the Fiesta for this year.
Inside, Ford will — for the first time — throw in a rearview camera as standard equipment on either the 4.2-inch screen or the 8-inch screen on cars loaded with MyFord Touch. Radar systems, lane departure warnings, and blind spot detection will also be available. The new Focus will go on sale later this year.