All the pics and details on Ford’s RAV-4-rivalling SUV
15 February 2008

These are the first official pictures of the new Kuga, Ford's forthcoming Focus-based 4x4 which goes on sale in June, from £20,495.It will be launched with just one engine - the 134bhp 2.0-litre diesel, which is coupled to a six-speed manual gearbox and permanent Haldex four-wheel drive system. Ford is claiming the Kuga has best-in-class emissions, at 169g/km, and fuel consumption of 44.1mpg. It’s also maintaining that the Kuga will offer ‘surprisingly good’ off-road ability. Which is a good thing, as the competition at this price is going to be difficult for it to beat. The impressive Honda CRV 2.2 i-CTDi, excellent Toyota RAV4 2.2 D-4D - even the TD4 Land Rover Freelander 2 will be among the cars it has to beat.Inside, the Kuga has fold-flat rear seats, storage areas under those seats and under the boot floor. There is 1355-litres of luggage capacity in it with the rear seats down and 410-litres with the seats up, and a dual-split tailgate makes filling up the space that much easier. Trim levels are kept simple, too, with just two on offer; Zetec and the range-topping Titanium.The Ford Kuga makes its official debut at next month’s Geneva show; watch this space for more information on it on March 4.

Our Verdict

Ford Kuga

The second-generation Ford Kuga sports an American facelift, new trims and added equipment, doesn't detract it from still being one of the more athletic SUVs on sale

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15 February 2008

Am I the only person who thinks Ford have missed a trick with the frankly ridiculous name of their new 4x4?

Firstly, for a manufacturer to give a vehicle the same name (albeit spelled differently) as a completely disparate model that existed in their range as little as six years ago (the Mondeo-based Cougar coupé) is in my opinion extremely obtuse, short-sighted and potentially confusing. For this reason I have taken to deliberately mispronouncing it because basically I think its appellation is utterly absurd. If I were to be really cynical and conspiratorial I would even go so far as to say that it encourages illiteracy.

Then there's the fact that it means "plague" in several Slavic languages. So anyone driving one around the Baltic states is essentially driving a Ford Plague. All the more amusing considering the fact that Ford apparently chose the name because they thought it "translated well" across all of Europe. Bloody fools.

It's a pity really, because otherwise it's quite a nice looking car. It's just that name!

17 February 2008

I am the only one who fails to be the slightest bit excited about another mid size 4x4 hitting the market. So many interesting concepts at shows, so few original ideas in the showrooms. No wonder some the worlds big boys struggle to make money in this increasingly competitive global market.

17 February 2008

Lets hope ford get a 'plague' of sales because other than the meaning of the name this looks an exciting concept. How will it transfer to the showroom though?

Good luck to Ford, all they need to do now to acheive profitability is to sell Ford America!

20 February 2008

The name alone would be enough to dissuade me. Peculiar spelling and silly American macho overtones all in one word.

Supa klassy!

5 April 2008

I followed one of these up The Highway in London this morning, have to say I thought it looked really cool in the flesh. Not on sale yet I understand, that'd explain the FoMoCo number plates.....

5 April 2008

In pictures it certainly makes teh VW Tiguan look mind-numbingly dull.

19 April 2008

[quote NiallOswald]In pictures it certainly makes teh VW Tiguan look mind-numbingly dull[/quote]

Nothing short of what it is!

I really like the Kuga. Its neat looking, different, and will probably be a decent car to drive compared to its rivals. As already said, the Tiguan (it itself with an awful and stupid name) is just plain DULL! The CRV looks odd, the RAV4 has lost its way, the Kia/Hyundai are cheap in all senses of the word, the vauxhall Antera is just captiva with less seats and the captiva, well i wouldnt buy one, would you?

I think ford are on to a winner with this one. Should sell very well, dispite what you think of the name. Oh and i would buy the 2.5 turbo when it comes out cause i reckon that will be fun!

Dear Autocar website designers,

I understand your need to bring revenue in with advertising. However, can you do it in a way that makes your site usable please?


22 April 2008

The car looks neat and should have good showroom appeal but for my money Ford are too late to the table with this sort of offering and yes they'll sell a few but no great shakes with this one. In these togher times people will increasingly focus on what it is they NEED as opposed to what it is they WANT. Essentially, as a not particularly big family car that doesn't have 7 seats, but is new, attractive and 'trendy' the Kuga is probably going to fill the WANTS but not so the NEEDS. And its other problem is that small SUV's are old hat now and for 20 grand it's still only a Ford.

Good effort, nice looking motor, badly timed.

22 April 2008

If you WANT one all you NEED is cash!

I understand the difference between a 'want' and a 'need' but I disagree with the premise on the grounds it is what you can afford. You say in these 'tougher times' are you refering to the Governments destruction of living standards by taxing everyone to death?

I'd certainly agree Labour have taken £1'000s extra in taxes over the years and we're coming into a recession anytime now which will put a further squeeze on our car budgets (credit drying up doesn't help either!).

Give me a choice between the Kuga and a more expensive BMW X3 and I'd take the Kuga even if one could afford the disjointed Bimmer! Good job Ford, it's quite funky from most angles.

23 April 2008

I was making two points - Firstly, the Kuga appears quite desirable but because people have less cash they will less be able to afford what they want and might have to settle for what they need - this will apply to many aspects of consumer spending.

Second point was that Ford are too late with this product and a company like Ford should be leading not following. If they'd launched when Nissan launched the X trail they'd have done very well with it.

The next BIG thing has to be bringing a viable 'green' solution to the masses - where wil Henry be in this race?


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