It’s longer, wider and taller than the Fiesta so is notably roomierCleverly packaged crossover will provide 48V mild-hybrid tech and executive-grade options
Ford’s new Puma takes a traditional title and applies it to a brand new automobile that’s subtly however successfully completely different from its established SUV rivals.
Formally, the corporate describes the Puma as an “SUV-inspired crossover”, with its three standout virtues claimed to be “seductive styling”, ingenious rear stowage and the brand new 48V mild-hybrid petrol drivetrain.
The physique’s flowing surfaces have been developed beneath what designer George Saridakis labels an “anti-wedge” coverage. What he calls “separated” headlights and tail-lights are additionally a transfer towards the present tendencies for “becoming a member of every thing up”, Saridakis citing the business style for full-width mild bars throughout a automobile’s tail.
The brand new Puma is predicated on Ford’s current B international small automobile structure, the identical because the Fiesta, however the platform’s inherent flexibility has allowed the Puma to be sized very particularly.
It’s simply 30mm increased than the brand new Fiesta and the entrance seating place is raised by the identical quantity. That is nonetheless a compact automobile, however it’s usefully longer than the Fiesta in addition to wider, with a wider observe. And it squeezes a stunning quantity of inside area out of a automobile that’s smaller than the Focus.
Saridakis says he and the undertaking’s chief engineer, Norbert Steffens, labored within the styling studio with “cardboard and tape” making an attempt to extract the utmost baggage area from the Puma construction. This crossover has a claimed 456 litres of boot area, whereas the Focus has simply 370 litres.
They achieved this by means of what Ford calls a “decrease load field”. Reduce by means of the boot flooring, the field is a helpful 80 litres in capability and even has a detachable plug within the backside to permit it to be washed out.
The Puma’s inflexible boot flooring may also be fitted in three alternative ways: low, on prime of the load field; at a mid-height, which provides beneficiant hidden storage; and clipped out of the way in which, by being connected to the backs of the rear seats.
Steffens demonstrated that, with the boot flooring clipped out of the way in which, it’s attainable to load objects akin to a golf membership bag vertically at the back of the Puma because of the additional load top provided by the field. Even the parcel shelf has been rethought as a light-weight material cowl connected to the tailgate itself, which avoids the necessity to stow a clumsy load cowl.
From an engineering perspective, it’s the Puma’s new 48V mild-hybrid drivetrain that stands out. That is based mostly round an up to date model of Ford’s 1.Zero-litre Ecoboost petrol unit and replaces the traditional alternator with an 11.5kW built-in starter/ generator (referred to as a BISG). It should are available in 123bhp and 153bhp guises, with the extra highly effective model utilizing a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox.
The BISG is related to the engine by way of a belt and works in two instructions: it may be used when braking and coasting to get well vitality (which is saved in a small lithium ion battery) and it might additionally help the engine throughout acceleration.
Ford says the hybrid help has allowed the engine’s compression ratio to be lowered and a bigger turbocharger to be fitted, because the BISG can mitigate turbo lag and hold the engine turning sooner.
Efficiency at decrease speeds is particularly enhanced, says Steffens, with as a lot as 50% extra torque on provide. That improves gas financial system by round 9% on the WLTP financial system take a look at. This three-cylinder engine may change to two-cylinder working to save lots of gas and, in cease/begin mode, the BISG can restart the engine in 300 milliseconds. Ford says the 48V mannequin’s general WLTP financial system will likely be 124g/km.
A 1.5-litre diesel with a six-speed handbook gearbox will even be provided and is anticipated to be rated at 123g/km.
On the dealing with facet, Steffens says the Puma will get a brand new setting for the digital energy steering, a stiffer attachment for the beam axle and five-stud hubs for a extra inflexible fixing of the wheels in contrast with the Fiesta on which it’s based mostly.
Ford’s hopes for the Puma are additionally mirrored within the checklist of upmarket choices. It is going to be one of many first Ford fashions to take native hazard info from the HERE knowledge community, receiving dwell updates of congestion, crashes, ice and pothole warnings, for instance.
Adaptive cruise management, blindspot info, pre-collision help and even lumbar therapeutic massage entrance seats present how Ford desires to mix the potential of an executive-level spec in a town-friendly package deal.
Why has you determined to supply diesel engines once more, alongside the brand new 48v Delicate hybrid petrol engine?
Norbert Steffens, chief engineer Ford Puma: “The 1.5-litre diesel engine continues to be very barely extra economical than the brand new hybrid petrol beneath WLTP testing circumstances. We absolute imagine that the most recent diesel engines are actually utterly clear [in pollution terms], as clear as petrol. The diesel Puma has a 12-litre Urea tank which can want re-filling between each 2500 and 6000 kilometres. Winter circumstances and plenty of brief journeys are imply far more common Adblue fill-ups, however that’s how we make sure the lowest air pollution.”
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