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HSE2
22nd September 2014, 03:46 PM
http://www.goauto.com.au/mellor/mellor.nsf/story2/1BF3E12C81AED7F4CA257D5B00053189


Buyer feedback prompts more power and auto FWD variant for Ford Kuga




22 September 2014

By RICHARD BERRY

IN RESPONSE to customer feedback, Ford will introduce more powerful and efficient EcoBoost petrol engines to its Kuga range next year, plus an automatic front-wheel drive variant.

The new engine line-up will see the 2015 petrol Kuga further increase its output and fuel efficiency superiority over entry-level versions of its compact SUV rival – the 2.0-litre Toyota RAV4, while a new 2.0-litre turbo variant will stay ahead of the 2.5-litre RAV4.

Ford Australia’s brand communications associate Martin Günsberg said the new line-up of petrol powertrains follows a response from buyers asking for more grunt and an entry variant with automatic transmission.

“Our Trend and Titanium customers were asking for a more powerful engine to complement the driving dynamics and premium feel of the Ford Kuga and the 176 kW EcoBoost certainly ups the stakes in terms of power output,” Mr Günsberg told GoAuto.

“We also had feedback from customers looking for the convenience of an SUV that didn’t necessarily need all the benefits of AWD. We’ve added a two-wheel drive automatic variant to the Ambiente Ford Kuga to better meet the needs of this customer.”

The Ambiente front-wheel drive manual entry variant will have its 110kW/240Nm 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine swapped for a 1.5-litre turbo-four cylinder, which produces the same output, but cuts fuel use by 0.4 litres per 100km to 6.3L/100km.

The front-wheel drive Kuga will come with a six-speed automatic transmission for the first time too, powered by a 134kW/240Nm 1.5-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder, which returns 7.0L/100km.

That same engine replaces the old 1.6-litre turbo-petrol four-cylinder in the all-wheel drive petrol Ambiente and while there’s no change in output, fuel economy is reduced by 0.1L/100km to 7.6L/100km with the six-speed automatic transmission.

The top-of-the-range all-wheel-drive Trend and Titanium variants will get a 176kW/340Nm 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine making 42kW and 100Nm more than the 1.6-litre unit it replaces. Fuel consumption is up by 0.6L/100km at 8.6L/100km with the six-speed auto.

The engine line-up will be available in the Kuga from January with pricing to be announced closer to the on-sale date.

The current Kuga line-up starts at $27,990, excluding on-road costs, for the petrol Ambiente front-wheel drive manual and tops out at $47,740 for the Titanium all-wheel drive diesel.

Ford Australia confirmed diesel variants of the Kuga will continue to be available.

Franco Cozzo
23rd September 2014, 11:33 AM
Thats a big jump in power with the 2L, wonder why they didn't offer it in the first place?

HSE2
23rd September 2014, 02:00 PM
I know. Thats nearly the same as my Xr8. What is the world coming to?

WASP
23rd September 2014, 02:08 PM
The previous power option really spoilt the KUGA offering. Good to see they have addressed this finally. Now all they need to do is call it an Escape and its all good for my better half.

HSE2
23rd September 2014, 02:11 PM
Bobbi doesn't like the name? Can't image why!

WASP
23rd September 2014, 11:28 PM
Bobbi doesn't like the name? Can't image why!

Lol, she told me in no uncertain terms that she will never, ever own, or drive a vehicle called KUGA.

4Vman
24th September 2014, 06:38 AM
Lol, she told me in no uncertain terms that she will never, ever own, or drive a vehicle called KUGA.

Funnily enough i know of another woman who likes the look of the Kuga but refuses to consider one because of its name...

Wonder how many genuine sales Ford are missing out on?

WASP
24th September 2014, 06:58 AM
Yes Norm when you consider who the target market is for this vehicle the mind does certainly bogle as to why, and how some of these naming decisions get made. Bobbi doesn't like the name Mondeo either but does likes the car. At least that one is not so offensive.

4Vman
24th September 2014, 07:02 AM
Yes Norm when you consider who the target market is for this vehicle the mind does certainly bogle as to why, and how some of these naming decisions get made. Bobbi doesn't like the name Mondeo either but does likes the car. At least that one is not so offensive.

Yep.. Mondeo is a name forever tarnished in Australia, it wont matter how good the car is, people will switch off to it . Kuga is just stupid given probably 85% of people who will predominantly look at one are Mothers.

Franco Cozzo
24th September 2014, 12:10 PM
They should have just called it Escape, everyone knows what an Escape is.

jpd80
24th September 2014, 07:36 PM
Thats a big jump in power with the 2L, wonder why they didn't offer it in the first place?

nearly all the 2.0 Ecoboost production was earmarked for USA and Canada where Fusion and Escape are so popular
both are regularly in the 25,000 to 30,000/month zone with a hefty proportion being 2.0 EB,
it's only now that more production is coming on line.

dash gt
25th September 2014, 02:16 PM
Maybe they should have called it Escape.

When ever I think Escape i think pox box mazda Tribute tho... Ewww.

Im a bit dissapointed this 2.0 option wasn't available earlier.

Lets see if Ford actually market it and push it.

My mum has a CX5 GT 2.5 litre and its pretty ordinary for a $46k car. Trying to convince the old boy to buy her this instead, as he prefers Ford.

jpd80
25th September 2014, 06:27 PM
Maybe they should have called it Escape.

When ever I think Escape i think pox box mazda Tribute tho... Ewww.

Im a bit dissapointed this 2.0 option wasn't available earlier.

Lets see if Ford actually market it and push it.

My mum has a CX5 GT 2.5 litre and its pretty ordinary for a $46k car. Trying to convince the old boy to buy her this instead, as he prefers Ford.
Damo, the 2.0 EB calibration came from Escape in Nth America, not originally developed by FoE,
The 2.0 EB is a "filler" for Europe but proabaly a key option for our market, a point ofdifference for Kuga
that very few competitors can match.... or like CX-5, do they really even want to with economy as priority one.