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Car reviews - Ford - Focus - Sport 5-dr hatch


New Ford Focus ticks even more boxes than before. We test the tidy Sport hatch

2 Sep 2011

THE new Focus was engineered in Cologne with 80 per cent of the old model’s team back on the job to create a 93 per cent changed vehicle. Using the VW Golf and Audi A3 as its benchmarks, previous weak points like noise pathways disappear while completely fresh looks inside and out arrive within a stronger, greener, safer and more efficient small car package that – somehow still – is claimed to evolve its predecessors’ first-class dynamics. After 10 days in the $27,390 Sport 2.0 GDI, we find out if Ford has succeeded.
Model release date: 1 August 2011 to 1 August 2015

Previous model

LV Focus Zetec

Released: February 2009
Ended: July 2011
Family Tree: Focus

THE facelifted version of Ford's MkII Focus continued with the popular Zetec variant, featuring new sheetmetal from the base of the windscreen forward, and also a different hatch. Importantly, however, the cars bound for Australia – XR5 Turbo and RS excepted – did not introduce revised side body panels boasting a more pronounced crease line as they did in Europe and elsewhere, because our cars came from South Africa. Being a Zetec, the cars sported a bodykit, racier interior trim, more equipment levels, lower-profile wheels and tyres and a firmer suspension tune compared to the lesser CL and LX. But there was no more extra performance from the 107kW/185Nm 2.0-litre DOHC four-cylinder petrol engine, mated to either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic with a Tiptronic-style shift pattern. As with the LT from 2007, there were both five-door hatch and four-door sedan Zetec models. Ford’s biggest issues with the LV Focus were a drab interior, dated exterior styling, inconsistent build quality and disrupted supply due to industrial action – but the car still held the dynamic high ground compared to its newer rivals.

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