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Redesigned 2020 Ford Focus Adds Space, Safety, and Infotainment Sophistication

Redesigned 2020 Ford Focus Adds Space, Safety, and Infotainment Sophistication

By Liz Kim, April 11, 2018
Ford has released preliminary information on its latest Focus, the fourth-generation of Ford’s global compact car. And while the details are specific to those vehicles that will be sold in China and Europe, they provide a strong indication of what Ford’s compact car will offer once it arrives in the U.S. in the latter half of 2019, presumably for the 2020 model year.

Like it has in the past, Ford developed a global platform for the new 2020 Focus. Major components will be shared around the world, with unique tweaks to meet buyer preferences in specific regions. As with the current car, the next-gen Focus lineup will consist of a 4-door sedan and a 5-door hatchback. A station wagon will be available globally, but is unlikely to come to America, where people overwhelmingly prefer crossover SUVs.

In China and Europe, where the new Focus will be sold starting later this year, Ford outlined the car’s more expensive trim levels, which are the outdoorsy Active, the racy ST, the premium Titanium, and the luxurious Vignale. For the U.S. market, this will change, and Ford promises an overall simplification of the car in terms of the number of available variations.

Although the new Focus is pretty much the same size as the outgoing Focus, its wheelbase has been stretched and reconfigured so that rear passengers have more shoulder, leg, and knee room, and Ford says that it has upgraded the car’s interior materials and has reduced noise for a quieter ride.

Cargo space is improved, too. Should the station wagon version arrive Stateside, it supplies 58 cubic feet of maximum cargo space with the rear seat folded, accessible via the available hands-free power tailgate. An underfloor storage space is configured to carry the removable cargo cover when it is not needed.

Technologically, this is the most advanced Focus yet. A Sync 3 infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration carries over, now with an embedded modem supplying a high-speed Wi-Fi hotspot. A wireless phone charger is available, along with various smartphone app and connected service functions.

On the active safety front, Ford’s new CoPilot360 suite of systems will be offered for the Focus. Highlights include adaptive cruise control with stop-and-go capability, traffic sign recognition, and a lane centering assist system. Ford also announced a new Evasive Steering Assist system for the new Focus, as well as adaptive headlights that can predict when the road curves to improve illumination.

Globally, the new Focus will offer small-displacement 3-cylinder and 4-cylinder engines in standard gas, turbocharged gas, and diesel configurations. For the North American market, expect the company to offer a more powerful range of engines. A manual gearbox is standard, with a new 8-speed automatic transmission an option. The car’s new platform boasts a 20% increase in torsional rigidity, and new suspension and steering designs promise more engaging driving dynamics.

More information about the U.S.-spec Focus will be released closer to its on-sale date in the latter part of 2019.
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