There’s some really nice touches on my long-term Focus, none more so than when refueling. With most other cars, once you’ve opened the fuel door towards the back of the car, you’ve got a cap to undo, sometimes with a key. But on the Focus it’s completely different, and opening the little door reveals the filling aperture for you to simply insert the nozzle into. So no chance of getting diesel residue on your hands, making them smelly for the rest of the day, and no fear of leaving the cap on the top of the fuel pump as you wrestle your way to pay. It’s a clever solution that just makes life easy. And one other benefit is that the aperture prevents you from filling up with the wrong fuel, so no worried calls to a breakdown service asking them to drain the car from fuel, and no open wallet surgery to pay for it. Ford calls it Easy Fuel and it’s a standard feature on every new Focus. Top marks to the engineers that came up with it!
Stare very carefully at the front grille while the engine is cold and running, and you’ll notice that there are shutters that open and close perodically. Ford calls it the ‘Active Grille Shutter System’, and the theatrics have been created to ensure the amount of cooling air entering the engine compartment is carefully controlled to reduce aerodynamic drag and help the engine reach the correct temperature more quickly. This brings about better fuel economy and reduces the amount of emissions entering the environment. It pays dividends inside the cabin, too, meaning warm air permeates the cabin sooner.
Another way of ensuring better aerodynamic efficiency is to optimise the underside of the car. If you were to roll the Focus onto its roof, and I don’t suggest that you do, you’ll see a series of measures that trains the air to follow the most efficient path. Every component is designed to be as low drag as possible, and that’s not easy when you’ve got items like a bulky engine, exhaust system and other mechanical items in the way, but refining the underneath is a another clever way of making sure the car is operating as efficiently as is possible.
Diesel engines have been in the wars due to manipulation of the regulations by some unscrupulous manufacturers, but there’s no worries with Ford’s latest 2.0-litre EcoBlue engine, as it complies fully with the Euro-6d
Temp emissions standards. Selective Catalyst Reduction ensures this, but it does mean that drivers have to keep an eye on the separate AdBlue tank. The clear urea-based liquid is designed to convert harmful NOx emissions into harmless nitrogen and water, and additionally, a diesel particulate filter works alongside to reduce solid particles by more than 99 per cent. For now, the engine doesn’t meet the upcoming Euro-6d Final emissions regulations, and that’s because it hasn’t been tested to the latest RDE2 real-world testing. Once it has, it will become four per cent cheaper on company car tax, as well as £40 cheaper on the first year’s vehicle excise duty when the car is new.
Date arrived 20th April 2019
Fuel economy 45.6-49.6mpg (combined) 46.1mpg (on test)
Ride comfort constantly surprises me, as it really is exceptional on the standard 18-inch alloy wheels.
I love the look of my own Focus, but find the grille on the Zetec, Titanium and Titanium X models quite bland and nondescript.