We begin this blog while stationary. We always begin while driving,
but we wanted something different. We’re starting this blog differently
by discussing the new Ford Focus’s interior first. What can I tell you about it? First, it’s a real
improvement compared to the previous one. The previous Focus’s interior didn’t make us happy. That’s because Ford put as
much plastic as possible around you, adding as much buttons as possible
with all kinds of fonts.
They changed this. Ford is taking steps here. They have a Dutch designer and
a Belgian lady who decides what materials to use. Ford also has a Dutch design chief. I think he’s called Amko Leenarts.
Yes, I think that’s right. Anyway, much has changed here. It’s more quiet, there’s more room, and it looks nice. They chose softer materials and more luxury. Fortunately, Ford doesn’t use the term ‘premium’. They’re not premium; they want
to build cars for normal people. They want to appeal to as many people as possible. You see that. This carbon strip.
We’re driving an ST Line. I’ll tell you more about that later.
We’re driving an ST Line with "carbon look". This strip runs through the interior. The shape of the doors is mirrored
in the dashboard.
That’s pretty. The carbon isn’t real carbon. It’s like someone drew carbon on a Windows 95
computer and printed it on a strip. It’s not very cool, but the interior
as a whole is much, much better. We’re driving an ST Line. Like I said,
this means the interior has different materials than other editions such as
the Vignale, Titanium, or Active. Every Ford Focus line gets its own interior. We get sporty accents and perforated-looking
leather. I don’t know if it’s really perforated. Red stitching in the steering wheel and seats. The sport seats are more sporty and offer
more lateral support than the Titanium seats. So yeah. It’s a good interior. We have to talk about the exterior,
but let’s go for a drive first. It has 50% less buttons.
They mainly did this by putting
a lot in the two screens. There’s a screen on the dashboard
for things you don’t use every day. The screen between the gauges
contains driving things, but it includes things that
I think could’ve been omitted. The heads-up display settings, for example. The first Ford with heads-up display in Europe.
They said this with pride. I don’t know if they should be proud,
because the rivals have been doing it for years. Doesn’t matter. This is the first
Ford with heads-up display. That means you can look at the hood
and the road to see what you’re doing. It’s a bit too small. I haven’t found
the right settings yet. It’s adjustable. You can change all kinds of things,
but I haven’t found the right settings yet. I want to see all the information without
ducking to read the street names on the satnav. It’s not yet perfect. They have a heads-up display. That’s nice. I have few complaints about the interior.
Like I said, it’s a huge improvement.
Of course we can drive.
We get to choose
from gasoline and diesel engines. In the Netherlands it starts at the 99 hp Trend
and goes up to the 180 hp ST Line. Line. That’s a 1.
5 3-cylinder EcoBoost engine
we know from the Fiesta ST, but with less hp. (180) We’re driving it now.
Let’s test it. Let’s be honest. Ford wins because they build
the best handling car in its segment. I think this has been true for the Focus
the past 20 years. They were at the top. This new Focus should be good too. They did a number of things. First, a 20% stiffer chassis. It has less torsion movement
and chassis sag. That’s good. They worked hard on the suspension. The weaker engines come with a torsion bar. For the Netherlands this is the 1.0 Trend only. When you choose more hp,
you get an independent rear suspension. This car gets two different rear suspensions. Our car has the independent rear suspension. I have to say, this car has tight handling. Kudos for the Ford suspension engineers. It’s a nice handling car. The ST Line is
10 mm lower than the Vignale and Titanium. There will also be an Active,
which is 30 mm taller. Not just the struts are longer;
the tires are bigger too. This ST Line is a nice handling car. The 180 hp engine is fun too.
The soundtrack is nice. Like we said before, a 3-cylinder engine. I know people are disappointed
that cylinders are disappearing. This is the trend. It can’t be helped. A 3-cylinder engine sounds nice when you push it.
It start to rumble like half a boxer engine. I think that’s nice. I think it lacks a bit of torque when going uphill. This isn’t fair. It’s only a 3-cylinder engine
that has to move a big car uphill. The Focus is 100 kg (220 lb) lighter and it has
a longer wheelbase for more stability at high speeds. This also benefits the interior. There’s more room. There are more possibilities to package
and arrange things as efficiently as possible. You’d think a 5 cm longer wheelbase
makes for a bigger car. No. Our editor Japio would be proud of Ford,
because the outer dimensions are the same. Only the wheels have moved,
so there’s less overhang, Japio. You like that, don’t you? You’d say the proportions are okay,
but the new Focus’s design. I think it’s difficult.
It’s more anonymous, a less pronounced Ford. I think the Fiesta is one of
the coolest cars in its class. The lines of the Focus isn’t really my thing. The drooping nose.
They proudly say that the C pillar. No, the A pillar here is more horizontal
to make it end at the front wheel. In our heads this should look pretty,
but I don’t know. I think it’s difficult to look at.
Maybe I’m not the only one. This is personal taste,
so you can have your own opinion. It’s not my favorite exterior design. I don’t think it’s ugly either. It’s not. The handling compensates for it.
The expectations were high. This car has been promised for some time.
We’ve been to the introduction. They said we’d love this car
because the handling is great. The engineers told me I’d like it. I’ll believe it when I see it. They were right. This is a good handling car. The front bites into corners. The cornering is tight and it keeps its line.
It’s nice and neutral. You can move the ass when
you go into a corner fast. The traction control system should be
switched off completely, though. That’s complicated. First, you have to push and hold
the button and confirm with OK on the wheel. We discovered that if you don’t, it’ll switch on again. ESP can’t be switched off completely. That’s something. How well. A minor thing. Only a grumbler minds this. How many people will use
this car to drift through corners? I do. Sorry Martijn, I’m putting
your stuff in that compartment. The new Ford infotainment system. There’s a strange red bug
on top of it, but that aside. It’s fine. The satnav works fine too, unless. Unless you connect your iPhone. Oh, Apple CarPlay. A route with waypoints is loaded.
When I say ‘continue’ and ‘agree’. Look. Now there’s no way to. It opens Apple Maps, but it doesn’t copy
my route or destination in the satnav. I can’t return. Now it’s Apple CarPlay and nothing else. The satnav is lost. I want to
solve it by disconnecting my phone. Look, no more route. Only our place
on the map, but the route is gone. I think that’s clumsy.
I don’t know if it’s Ford or Apple CarPlay. I have no good experiences with Apple CarPlay.
Things like this is shit. It should work. You don’t want lose your
satnav data when you connect your phone. I don’t care if Ford or Apple has
to fix this, but it needs to be fixed. Thanks Martijn. Ford already knows. They gave us a card
with a photo of the screen we just saw. They put it in the car. That’s a nicely painted nail. I should’ve chosen ‘disable’, but I can’t anymore. We’re going home, Martijn. I do know that address.
I don’t know the hotel’s address. Do you? No. Let’s go home. It can’t be helped. You can order the new Ford Focus now. Prices for the 99 hp 1-liter engine
start at 23,500 euros. It ends close to 40,000 euros
for the available models. The 180 hp ST Line we’re driving
starts at 30,500 euros, but the Vignale is more expensive, as is
the wagon compared to this 5-door hatchback. You can make it more expensive if you want. I’m pleasantly surprised by this new Focus. I don’t really like the exterior and
there are minor issues such as Apple CarPlay. There are always minor things,
but it’s a good handling car. It makes me long for the
new Focus ST and Focus RS. Of course these will be made. They may
be the best-handling hot hatches ever. Subtitles – Maru’s Text Support .