As amazing as it may seem, Ford Europe has never ventured into the segment of vehicles that in Detroit has forged a solid reputation in America with its 4X4. What you see before your eyes is meant to put an end to this curious situation and it goes by the name Kuga. It could be a little late in the coming because in the fastest growing segment in Europe, the competition will be stout for the blue oval brand. No less than 18 constructors and 20 models are already on the market that includes the recently released VW Tiguan.
For this first attempt Ford Europe hasn’t hesitated in taking what worked on the C and S Max, which were the make’s first entry into the universe of family fans. And this concept has a name: Kynetic Style. The famous Ford double trapezius radiator grill is present as is the raised section on the engine cover. There’s a touch of sport with the two ribbed sections; the first found on the lower bodywork and the other on the doors and of course there are some splendid 17-inch alloy wheels and the twin-pipe chrome muffler pipes. The modest 2-litre duratorq turbo diesel engine delivers 136 horsepower.
Among the purchasing points, style is first on the list. Ford has paid close attention to this point without forgetting a fundamental, that is to say, a chassis beyond reproach and in this case it is that of the Focus and C Max.
No real surprises on board either. There is the large chromed coloured central console, four-spoke steering wheel and starter button on the dashboard. There’s no doubt this is a Ford and the work done is both rigorous and effective.
The seats and list of finishes are worthy of a sedan where the modularity of the interior space conforms to the wants of crossover users.
Available in both two and four wheel drive, the Kuga doesn’t pretend to have the climbing abilities of a Range Rover or Cherokee. But it can take on a bit of a torn up terrain like its direct competitors. However, on the road it is top drawer when it comes to handling. The fact the Focus platform was raised 8cms is barely noticed. The car sticks to the surface and there’s none of that nasty rolling effect. One drawback is the high flanks of the tyres that have a tendency to drift without engaging the trajectory control.
There’s little to report concerning the rest, we would just ask why Ford waited so long to get stuck in the segment.