Active variant of 2018 Ford Ka+ comes with crossover-like features

Article by Christian A., on February 8, 2018

At the upcoming 2018 Geneva Motor Show next month, we won’t be seeing the all new Ford Focus. But there’s something else there that we’re sure you’ll want to see for yourself. The automaker’s entry level model in Europe, the Ka+, is currently going through some physical changes. Sources say that it will also come with an Active version, like that of the Fiesta Active that came out last year.

The pseudo crossover is more than just what’s apparent on the exterior. It has got a new plastic body cladding, and its suspension has been raised by about +23 millimeters / 0.9 inches. It now has a wider track as well as larger front anti roll bars.

The automaker also decided that they will tweak the electronic power steering as well, therefore making the Ford Ka+ Active feel more like a crossover when being taken out for a ride. Dampers had been retuned as well, enabling a smoother ride when driving on bumpy roads, while the new Active Rollover Prevention system has an updated security, for when you strap your luggage on the roof.

Aside from the Active specification, the Ka+ has been equipped with a 1.5 liter turbodiesel engine that produces 94 horsepower, which also has as much as 215 Newton-metres (159 pound-feet) from 1,750 rpm. The Ka+ features “Smart Regenerative Charging” that is easier on your wallet, as the TDCi unit only emits 99 g/km of CO2. This also improves fuel efficiency as the system automatically engages the alternator, which then charges the battery when the vehicle is braking and just coasting.

As for the gasoline version, the Ka+ loses the 1.2 liter Duratec, and instead it comes equipped with the all new Ti-VCT engine with the same displacement. Customers could go for the entry level variant that carries out 69 horsepower, or the slightly larger more powerful 84 horsepower trim.

Lastly, there is also a larger engine that is the 1.5 liter EcoBoost mill inside the new Euro-spec Fiesta ST. This supposedly has a quieter operation as noise does not penetrate the cabin. It also comes with improved efficiency. Whichever engine option you get (gasoline or diesel) for the regular Ka+ and the new Ka+ Active, this will be paired to a five-speed manual gearbox that sends power to the front wheels.

And even if this will be Ford’s new entry level model for Europe, there are no compromises. It will come with a SYNC 3 infotainment system and a 6.5 inch touchscreen that is compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It even gets standard features like heated front seats and heated windscreen, as well as rain sensing wipers.

The Ford Ka+ will go on sale later this year.

Press Release


Ford today revealed the new KA+ – for the first time also offered as new KA+ Active crossover version – delivering greater comfort and convenience, more driver assistance technologies than the current model, and enhanced interior and exterior styling.

Offering generous space for five passengers and ample luggage, the new KA+ and KA+ Active are available with technologies including Ford’s SYNC 3 communications and entertainment system, rain-sensing wipers and automatic headlamps.

The new KA+ and KA+ Active for the first time also deliver a choice of petrol and diesel powertrains, including Ford’s new refined and fuel-efficient 1.2-litre, three-cylinder Ti-VCT (Twin independent Variable Camshaft Timing) petrol engine offering 70PS or 85PS, and Ford’s 95PS 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine designed to meet the needs of higher-mileage drivers.

The new KA+ Active further enhances the compact five-door model with rugged bodystyling, raised ride-height and unique chassis tuning, unique front grille designs, exclusive interior finishes and a high-level standard equipment specification.

“Last year Ford sold more than 200,000 SUVs in Europe for the first time, and demand for SUV and crossover models has never been higher. Our new Ford KA+ Active model will this year make the crossover affordable to even greater numbers of customers, with aspirational styling, sophisticated technologies customers would expect to see in much more expensive cars,” said Roelant de Waard, vice president, Marketing, Sales and Service.

“Ford has sold more than 61,000 KA+ since we first introduced the model in late 2016, and now we're offering customers even more choice with our first KA+ diesel engine for greater fuel-efficiency and cruising ability, and all-new petrol powertrains that are more responsive in town, all meeting the latest stringent emissions standards."

The KA+ was introduced to customers in Europe as a spacious, well-equipped and value-for-money small car that offers excellent fuel-efficiency and fun-to-drive dynamics at an affordable price.

The KA+ Active crossover is the second in a new line-up of Active cars to be offered by Ford, following the Fiesta Active that goes on sale later this year. Active models feature SUV-inspired styling, raised ride height and additional bodyside mouldings, while delivering hatchback practicality and true Ford fun-to-drive characteristics.

Stylish and well equipped

Available in Studio and Zetec specifications, in addition to the new Active model, the new KA+ features a high-mounted trapezoidal grille and large, swept-back headlamps, in keeping with Ford’s latest design language.

A new mesh grille features a chrome surround, and standard foglamps and daylight running lamps are highlighted with a distinctive C-shaped chrome detail, echoed by a C-shaped moulding at each corner of the rear bumper. Restyled front and rear bumpers contribute to the assertive new look.

The KA+ Active features ride height raised by 23mm and exterior styling enhanced with additional rocker and wheel-arch mouldings, a unique black finish for the upper and lower front grilles, and roof rails for carrying bikes and sports equipment – to support active lifestyles.

Further exclusive specification for the KA+ Active includes unique 15-inch alloy wheels and Canyon Ridge bronze metallic exterior paint colour.

The KA+ interior features a grained finish on the instrument panel and durable trim materials in a stylish dark charcoal colour scheme. Distinctive chrome accents are applied in areas regularly touched by customers and highly visible areas such as the door release handles, centre console controls and air vents.

The KA+ Active cabin is enhanced with Active-embossed scuff plates and a unique to Active leather steering wheel design incorporating cruise control switches and featuring Sienna Hazel stitching. Front and rear seats feature special fabric designs with Sienna Hazel stripes and matching stitching, and all-weather mats for both the cabin and cargo area will protect the interior from muddy shoes and boots.

Technology for convenience

New available comfort, convenience and driver assistance technologies will help deliver a more relaxed, refined and confident driving experience for new KA+ and KA+ Active customers.

Ford’s SYNC 3 communications and entertainment system enables drivers to control audio and connected smartphones using voice commands, or via the tablet-inspired 6.5-inch colour touchscreen, and is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto™.

Further technologies available to make driving easier include rain-sensitive wipers, headlamps that turn on automatically as daylight fades, and Ford’s Quickclear heated windscreen for faster getaways on frosty mornings. Heated front seats, Electronic Automatic Temperature Control and rear parking sensors are also offered.

All KA+ and KA+ Active models offer a comprehensive standard specification including power front windows and door mirrors, remote central locking, Hill Start Assist, Speed Limiter, and Ford Easy Fuel. The engine now starts with the push of a button, and in response to customer feedback, the bootspace is easier to access with a tailgate-mounted switch for easy opening, in addition to the convenient interior release accessible from the driver’s seat.

Six airbags, Electronic Stability Control and a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System protect occupants, and available Ford MyKey technology allows owners to set maximum speed and audio volume limits, and ensure safety features are not disabled when young and inexperienced drivers drive KA+.

A spacious interior allows a 2-metre tall passenger to comfortably sit behind a driver of a similar height. Further practicality is offered with rear seats that split 60/40 to fit larger loads.

Power of choice

The new KA+ and KA+ Active for the first time offer customers the power of choice, with available fuel-efficient petrol and diesel engines that meet the latest, stringent Euro Stage 6 emissions standards, supported by standard Auto Start-Stop technology.

Ford’s all-new 1.2-litre, three-cylinder Ti-VCT petrol engine shares a core architecture with the 200PS 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine that powers the all-new Ford Fiesta ST, on sale later this year, to deliver from an anticipated 114g/km CO2.*

Compared with the outgoing 1.2-litre Duratec petrol engine, the new engine offers up to 10 per cent more torque between 1,000 rpm and 3,000 rpm for optimised responsiveness in everyday driving, while delivering an anticipated average four per cent fuel-efficiency improvement across the rev-range for reduced running costs.

A three-cylinder configuration reduces friction and an aluminium block and cylinder head reduce weight, helping achieve improved fuel-efficiency.

Further technologies include:

Twin independent Variable Camshaft Timing that allows intake and exhaust valve timing to be adjusted independently for faster throttle response, improved low-end torque, and enhanced fuel-efficiency
Integrated exhaust manifold that optimises the exhaust system warm-up for reduced emissions
Two-stage variable displacement oil pump, Diamond-Like Coating for pistons and belt-in-oil primary drive belt design all contributing to optimised friction for greater fuel‑efficiency
The all-new 1.2-litre Ti-VCT also delivers improved refinement with an innovative off-set crankshaft design that counter-balances the three-cylinder operation without the need for a balancer shaft, a valvetrain optimised for quieter operation and an acoustic-isolation system to reduce the intrusion of engine noise into the cabin.

Both KA+ and KA+ Active are offered with Ford’s 95PS 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine – anticipated to deliver from 99g/km CO2, producing 215Nm of torque at 1750-2500 rpm for effortless cruising over longer distances.

The 1.5-litre TDCi features optimised combustion chamber design, turbocharging and sophisticated fuel injection to enhance refinement. Smart Regenerative Charging improves fuel‑efficiency by selectively engaging the alternator and charging the battery when the vehicle is coasting and braking.

All new KA+ and KA+ Active powertrains use Ford’s new low-friction five-speed manual transmission, delivering improved shift quality, refinement, and fuel-efficiency with features including Teflon-coated internal components, low-friction bearings and a synchronised reverse gear for easier selection.

Designed for Europe’s drivers

The new KA+ and KA+ Active make Ford’s acclaimed engaging and fun to drive character accessible to even greater numbers of customers. A chassis specification engineered to meet European driving expectations offers a unique front sub-frame, and suspension components including springs, dampers, rear torsion beam axle optimised for Europe’s roads. Enhanced door seals, sound proofing and aerodynamics are designed to reduce road and wind noise in the cabin.

In addition, the KA+ Active features a wider track, larger front anti-roll bar and uniquely tuned Electronic Power Assisted Steering, for optimised crossover handling. Retuned dampers feature a hydraulic rebound stopper for a smoother ride over harsh surfaces, and Active Rollover Prevention works within the Electronic Stability Control system to offer additional security when carrying roof loads.

To enhance crash performance, nearly 50 per cent of the KA+ body is made from high-strength steels, including the floor, front and rear chassis rails, window pillars, front bumper beam and passenger door beams.

The new KA+ and KA+ Active go on sale across Europe later this year, priced from £10,795 in the U.K.

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*Officially homologated fuel-efficiency and CO2 emission figures will be published closer to on-sale date.

The declared Fuel/Energy Consumptions, CO2 emissions and electric range are measured according to the technical requirements and specifications of the European Regulations (EC) 715/2007 and (EC) 692/2008 as last amended. Fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are specified for a vehicle variant and not for a single car. The applied standard test procedure enables comparison between different vehicle types and different manufacturers. In addition to the fuel efficiency of a car, driving behaviour as well as other non-technical factors play a role in determining a car's fuel/energy consumption, CO2 emissions and electric range. CO2 is the main greenhouse gas responsible for global warming.

From 1 September 2017, certain new vehicles will be type-approved using the World Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) according (EU) 2017/1151 as last amended, which is a new, more realistic test procedure for measuring fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. From 1 September 2018 the WLTP will fully replace the New European Drive Cycle (NEDC), which is the current test procedure. During NEDC Phase-out, WLTP fuel consumption and CO2 emissions are being correlated back to NEDC. There will be some variance to the previous fuel economy and emissions as some elements of the tests have altered i.e., the same car might have different fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

Source: Ford

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