With the current European crisis, consumers are beginning to shift allegiance to vehicles that offer good fuel economy. As a testament to that, around a quarter of total sales of Ford Focus in Europe is comprised of the variant that is fitted with 1.0-liter gasoline engine that offers great fuel economy.
The three-cylinder gasoline engine could provide up to 125 hp of output, while consuming only five litres of fuel for every 100 kilometres travelled and emitting only 114 grams of carbon dioxide for every kilometre cruised. Another variant of the 1.0-gasoline engine could offer up to 100 hp of output, while consuming only 4.8 litres of fuel for every 100 kilometres and emitting only 109 grams of carbon dioxide for every kilometre.
The figures represent a 25 percent improvement over the naturally aspirated 1.6-liter gasoline engine it replaces. Although a diesel engine with the same power offers better fuel economy at 4.20L/100km, it is more expensive in the United Kingdom by £800 ($1,240). Ford is currently the only carmaker in Europe that offers a 1.0-liter gasoline engine in a compact car, the closest rival would be the 1.2-liter power plant installed in VW Golf.
Despite its small size, the 1.0-liter gasoline turbocharged engine is more powerful than how it’s perceived. According to Ford, the engine combines the characteristics of a diesel power plant – high torque at low revs -- with the qualities of a gasoline engine – smoothness and power at high revs.
According to Ford, the gasoline engine offers lower running costs than the diesel for drivers who cruise fewer than 13,000 kilometres a year. Around half of the new car buyers in Europe prefer to acquire a unit powered by a diesel engine. Ford said customers will soon move back to gasoline engine, but that it would be slow. According to Ford UK product manager Andrew Paton, it took customers 20 years to shift to diesel, so the shift back to petrol will also take some time.