Ford is determined to soak up every last ray of spotlight available during the protracted 2015 Focus debut. Revealed in hatchback and wagon trims at Geneva earlier this year, the maker saved the global premiere of the Focus sedan for the bright lights of New York City. True, the New York auto show doesn’t officially begin for a week or so, but makers have grown fond of stringing reveals out in an attempt to capture as much attention as possible.
Aside from the obvious differences—it’s got a more steeply raked
backlight and trunk instead of a hatch—the Focus sedan falls right in
line with its refreshed five-door counterpart. (The Focus wagon variant
isn’t scheduled to make the trip to the U.S. anytime soon.)
The big news is the arrival of the 1.0-liter EcoBoost three-cylinder
engine mated to a manual six-speed transmission that we’ve already driven in a Euro-spec Focus. Currently available in the U.S.-market Fiesta,
the 1.0-liter Focus will come standard with a fuel-saving stop-start
system. To address driving dynamics, which we think were already good,
the rear suspension setup on all 2015 Focus models receives a tweaking,
and the electric power steering has been retuned. Ford claims shock
absorbers with a new valve design help improve interior quietness.
The 2015 model also marks the arrival of an SE Sport package trim, which
includes new body treatments, paddle shifters (when equipped with an
automatic transmission), a revised touring suspension, and 17-inch
gloss-black aluminum wheels wrapped in P215/50 tires.
Exterior updates include fresh styling for the hood, grille, and
trunklid, and signature LED lighting arrives for both the headlamps and
taillamps. The interior gets a new center console with improved storage
capacity and adjustable cupholders (Big Gulpers rejoice!), new seat
trims, satin chrome detailing, and an available heated steering wheel.
Ford is also getting a leg up on the approaching 2018 backup-camera mandate
by making a backup camera standard across the Focus lineup for 2015.
Images from the camera will appear on a dash-mounted 4.2-inch screen;
customers who spring for the optional MyFord Touch system will get
upgraded to an eight-inch display as part of the deal. Also making its
first appearance on the standard side of the order sheet of all trim
levels is Ford’s MyKey programmable vehicle settings.
Safety nanny systems such as blind-spot warning and a lane-keeping
system will also be optional, the latter incorporating an active
steering-correct function that applies steering to center the car in its
lane if initial warnings go unheeded. To help keep things quiet inside,
Ford specified thicker carpets and window glass, and improved
Final EPA fuel-economy numbers for the 1.0-liter EcoBoost aren’t in yet,
but Ford isn’t shy about its hopes, stating that it “expects the
1.0-liter EcoBoost Focus to raise the bar in fuel efficiency among
non-hybrid compact vehicles.” We’ll let you know how that works out, as
soon as we put one through an instrumented test.
Thanks to: Car and Driver