The world was treated to an exclusive glimpse of the next-generation Ford Focus at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) just as the carmaker prepares to commence production of the new model in Europe and North America in late 2010. The new Ford Focus four-door sedan and five-door hatchback offer stylish, modern and sporty yet fuel efficient machines designed to capture the attention of the consumers upon launch.
Ford plans to introduce the new Ford Focus to North American and European markets in early 2011 and in Asia, Africa and South America later on – for a total of 122 world markets. All the Focus units sold around the world will have 80 percent parts commonality, which means a model in North America will be nearly identical to a counterpart somewhere else in the globe.
The next-generation Focus is one of up to 10 distinct models underpinned by Ford's new C-car platform, which is expected to result to 2 million units in sales annually by 2012. The all-new Focus features a modern cockpit-style interior, highlighted by a stylish center console wrapped around the driver – all giving off a feeling of premium-car craftsmanship. The vehicle boasts of outstanding steering precision and road feedback as well as enhanced refinement and ride control.
Its chassis features optimized new designs for the "control blade" multilink rear suspension and semi-isolated front and rear subframes and is complemented by Electric Power Assist Steering. The Focus also comes with an advanced Dynamic Cornering Control system for better cornering stability and agility. It will be powered by a new 2.0-liter gasoline engine endowed with direct injection and Twin Independent Variable Camshaft Timing.
The new engine develops up to 20 hp more than the current I-4 powerplant and returns 10-percent better fuel economy. This 2.0-liter gasoline engine is paired to the latest six-speed Ford PowerShift automatic transmission that boasts of an advanced dual-clutch design, which can help cut fuel consumption by up to 9 percent. The new generation Focus also features advanced technologies typically installed in larger, more premium vehicles.
This is made possible by the magnitude of Ford's C-car program, allowing for more technologies and features economically viable for vehicles in the segment. One of these technologies is MyFord, a next-generation driver connect technology that offers a state-of-the-art combination of controls and display screens to operate key vehicle features. Another technology offered in the new Focus is a next-generation of Ford SYNC connectivity package.
This package includes sophisticated voice control, Bluetooth and satellite navigation, as well as connection points for external devices and media players. Other technologies include keyless entry and "Ford Power" start button, a semi-automatic parallel parking system and a rearview camera. The new generation Focus also offers better rigidity, thanks to high-strength steels that comprise 55 percent of the body shell as well as ultra-high-strength and boron steels that account for over 26 percent of the structure.
In fact, the torsional rigidity of the body shell is 25 percent better than the present North American Focus. Derrick Kuzak, Ford's group vice president of Global Product Development, remarked that customers around the globe are increasingly demanding for smaller cars with outstanding fuel economy and still features style, technology, connectivity and driving quality found on larger vehicles. He noted that Ford’s next generation of C-cars led by the new Focus will show that the carmaker is ready to meet such challenge.