By Jen Hyslop
I thought it would be interesting to delve into some details of what made the Ford Focus the go to car for so many families.
With its edgy and controversial looks the Ford Focus Mk1 wasn’t an immediate hit with everyone. Especially loyal Ford Escort owners.
More than 4.1 million Ford Escorts of each generation were sold in Britain over a period of 33 years from 1968 – 2000. The Focus certainly had big shoes to fill. With split opinions over the striking new shape, the Ford Focus was praised for the vehicles revered handling thanks to ingenious multi-link rear suspension and fantastic build quality.
Let’s take a look at the history of the Ford Focus and how it has become so popular with British Motorists. Released in July 1998 in Europe, manufactured by Ford Motor Company and replacing the Ford Escort. It is hard to believe the Ford Focus has now been with us for nearly 25 years. With every generation, new technology and new designs it remains one of the best Fords ever produced.
Replacing the Ford Escort, the Ford Focus Mk1 was awarded the 1999 European Car of the Year award with its fresh looks, funky interior, equipment levels and build quality beating all its competitors. There was a choice of three and five door hatchbacks, saloons and an estate version. The trim levels came in CL, Zetec, LX and Ghia with a variety of option packs.
In 2002 Ford launched its highest performance version of the Focus – Ford Focus RS. This was the first time the RS badge has been worn by any Ford since the much-revered Escort RS Cosworth. Talk about pressure!
The RS which was only available in Fords Imperial Blue colour and came with 2.0 litre turbo RS engine with a top speed of 144 mph. This original RS was only available in Europe, with only 4501 cars built and 2147 of them sold in the UK.
Following on from the success of the Mk1 Focus, the Mk2 Ford Focus was announced in 2004 available in three & five door hatchbacks and an estate version. Mk2 version was a larger model, had more room in the back and came with a lot more boot space. This version of the Ford Focus also had new technology such as Bluetooth handsfree phone, voice control, adaptive front lighting, climate control systems and a key free system.
In 2005 Ford released the Ford Focus ST with 225bhp with a top speed of 152 mph, 2.5 litre five-cylinder turbo charged engine. In 2009, Ford pulled it out the bag with the release of the Ford Focus RS with a 2.5 litre engine, 0 – 62 mph in just 5.9 seconds with a top speed of 163 mph. It was available in Frozen White, Ford Performance Blue and Ultimate Green with a huge rear spoiler!
In 2010 Ford announced they would be releasing a third generation of the Ford Focus, keeping the Focus up to date with modern interior and safety features with a redesigned cabin and new entertainment technology. This Ford Focus was the best-selling vehicle in 2012 with its sleek new design and all new features, making it popular with motorists and families.
In 2014 Ford announced the new facelift model with updated features such as a new grille, redesigned front end and slim line headlights.
Available in a range of engine configurations to suit every motorist with the ST and RS continuing the Ford performance range.
Marking 20 years since the original Ford Focus was released, Ford announced in 2018 the Fourth Generation of the Focus with a striking new design and packed with new technology the Focus experience is better than ever with a 13.2- inch colour touchscreen with SYNC 4 technology.
As with previous generations the Focus is available in a saloon, hatchback and estate styles. With a variety of models, you can choose from the practicality of the Focus Active, luxury of the Titanium or Vignale or for a more sports inspired look you can choose from the ST-Line range, or go all out with the Focus ST. In June 2020 the EcoBoost Hybrid engine was introduced to improve efficiency.
In 2019 Ford announced the Focus ST – 2.3 litre EcoBoost turbocharged petrol engine or 2.0 litre EcoBlue diesel engine with a six-speed manual transmission, revised grille, 18- or 19-inch alloys and a larger rear spoiler. Inside the vehicle the interior has also changed with Recaro front seats, aluminium gear stick, pedals and scuff plates.
2022 Ford decided to give the Focus a refresh making it more efficient with the introduction of hybrid engines, a new automatic transmission and featuring the new SYNC 4 infotainment system with improved safety features.
The Ford Focus instantly recognisable silhouette feels so familiar and reassuring. But nothing stands in the way in way of progress and if the new designs such as the Puma are anything to go by, coupled with BEV powertrains, perhaps any new future models will be just as fantastic.
If you would like any more information regarding the Ford Focus or would like to book a test drive, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our sales team who will be more than happy to help with any enquiries.