New Ford Focus TDCi Now Automatic
Ford has increased the appeal of the diesel version of the Focus by adding an automatic transmission to the mix. Previously only available with a 6-speed manual, the Focus 2.0 TDCi was never likely to win too many friends, despite this being an excellent combination in practical terms.
And the better news is that Ford has put a "PowerShift" semi-automitic transmission in the Focus, with a dual-clutch system and offering 6 speeds. This has some advantages over a conventional automatic transmission based on a torque converter. Most notably it is significantly more efficient, and will allow the Focus to return just a touch over 17 km/l.
Ford has also made some cosmetic changes to the Focus, bringing a fresh look to the ageing line up. The Focus update is quite substantial, with a completely new front end.
Read on for the full details on the car:
BANGKOK, 7 November 2008
Ford Thailand brings new excitement to the market with the “New Ford Focus TDCi”. This new diesel version of the award-winning Ford Focus comes with a more contemporary and sporty look enhanced by “kinetic design” elements plus the first-in-segment six-speed PowerShift automatic transmission and Electronic Stability Program (ESP). With these improvements, drivers can expect a more impressive performance, responsiveness and road handling. Capable of running on B5 biodiesel fuel, the New Ford Focus TDCi continues to live up to the green heritage of the Ford Focus range.
“The New Ford Focus TDCi is destined to be a new milestone in Thai automotive market,” said Saroj Kiatfuengfoo, senior vice president of Ford Thailand. “It is ready to set a new benchmark and impress urban drivers with a remarkable package of the combined benefits provided by the six-speed PowerShift transmission system and the Duratorq turbo diesel commonrail (TDCi) engine. Drivers will definitely enjoy the ease and convenience of automatic transmission, performance of a manual transmission, and shift smoothness as well as unmatched power and torque and best-in-class fuel efficiency. This innovative transmission system – PowerShift – that generally found in luxury or supercars is now installed in the new Focus TDCi.”
Ford has invited World Rally Championship (WRC) star racer Mikko Hirvonen to the launch. The 28-year-old Finnish racer staged a demo drive on track to demonstrate the New Ford Focus TDCi’s performance to a group of Thai media. Some Thai media and celebrities had an opportunity to sit on the back seat while Hirvonen drove around the track, allowing the media and celebrities to enjoy the hot lap in the New Focus TDCi. Hirvonen has just finished the Pioneer Carrozzeria Japan rally, the 14th rally in the WRC 2008, with his third victory of this season.
“In the rally, I drove a modified version of the Ford Focus for the World Rally Championship. After trying the New Focus TDCi with PowerShift transmission today, I am impressed with its responsiveness, great performance and especially by uninterrupted torque during gear shift, which provides an outstanding comfortable drivability that drivers truly enjoy. Try it and I am sure you will love it,” said Hirvonen.
Contemporary design with “kinetic design” cue
The New Ford Focus TDCi’s influential visual enhancement is its dramatic new front featuring 'kinetic design' elements. It is more expressive, more athletic and more in keeping with the overall on-road character of new Focus. Kinetic design elements such as the large trapezoidal opening below the bumperline, new bonnet with defined contours, new stylish headlamps, large exterior side mirrors that also offer better driver’s visibility, sporty 16-inch alloy wheels and a new roof spoiler dominate the new Focus TDCi design.
The touch of kinetic design continues inside. The interior is outstanding with the use of quality and soft-touch materials such as the soft-touch dash pad as well as soft-touch upper door trims. The new console creates a 'flow through' effect from the centre stack of the instrument panel and helps to create a 'cockpit feel' for the driver and front passenger. A new premium centre console has been designed with an emphasis on improved comfort and function. It features a moveable soft armrest which slides forward, plus two cup holders with butterfly-style folding covers. To make any journey in the New Focus TDCi even more pleasant, Ford has provided sockets for MP3 and iPod connection, the features that urban drivers cannot live without.
Innovative PowerShift Transmission
The New Ford Focus TDCi will be available in four-door sedan Ghia and five-door hatch Sport. Both models are powered by Ford’s renowned Duratorq TDCi 2.0L with PowerShift automatic transmission.
The PowerShift automatic transmission provides great responsiveness. It consists essentially of two layshaft transmissions working in parallel, each with its own wet clutch unit. Thanks to the layout of the intermediate shafts – one carrying the 'uneven' gears 1, 3 and 5, and the other the even gears 2, 4 and 6 – subsequent gear changes can be prepared by pre-selecting the next gear while in motion and at full power. The change then takes place through the opposed activation of both clutches, the clutch activations being co-ordinated such that no torque interruption occurs. From the driver's seat, the sensation is smooth acceleration – much smoother than a conventional automatic transmission.
The Ford PowerShift transmission system does not require any complex sub-systems such as torque converters, planetary gear sets, multiple wet clutches and multiple bands – all of which significantly reduce gearbox efficiency due to increased inertia and drag torque effects.
"With the new Ford PowerShift transmission we are introducing the transmission of the future. This automatic six-speed dual-clutch unit provides the efficiency of a manual and the full comfort of an automatic with sophisticated dynamics thanks to uninterrupted torque from the dual-clutch technology – it is therefore perfectly suited to the new Ford Focus,” said Kiatfuengfoo.
The 2.0-litre DuraTorq turbodiesel engine produces 100kW and maximum torque of 320Nm at low rev of only 1,800 rpm (can be boosted up to 340Nm for a short period if necessary). It also offers an impressive fuel economy (combined urban and extra urban) of just 5.8L/100km. Both Ghia and Sport models are able to accelerate from zero to 100km/h in 9.6 seconds. Being B5-capable, the New Focus TDCi is also environmentally friendly.
Outstanding driving dynamics and safety
Ford Focus’ renowned safety and driving dynamics are maintained. The Control Blade multilink rear suspension and the front MacPherson spring struts give the New Focus TDCi the optimum balance of ride, handling, steering precision and comfort. At the same time, the NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) is improved, resulting in a quieter and more pleasant ride.
The New Ford Focus TDCi gives maximum confidence at all speed and accurate and responsive steering control with the electric-hydraulic power-assisted steering (EHPAS). The Electronic Stability Program (ESP) and Traction Control assist the driver to maintain vehicle stability during all driving situations.
Full safety package in the New Focus TDCi include ABS, electronic braking distribution (EBD), air bags and safety structure. The clever automatic hazard warning light activation system will warn following drivers of emergency braking manoeuvres. Once switched on the hazard warning lights can be switched off automatically by the system or at any time by pressing the hazard warning light switch.
Take a look the New Ford Focus TDCi at Ford booth at the Thailand International Motor Expo 2008 end of November at Challenger Hall, Muang Thong Thani. Both the 4-door Ghia and the 5-door hatch Sport model is available at the special launch price at only Bt1,099,000.
"Ford Focus' influence on the automotive world has been significant – it was the first and – to date – the only car in the world to be acclaimed "Car of the Year" both in Europe and in North America, and it has won more than 80 awards in Europe alone and more than 30 awards in Asia Pacific.
Driving quality has always been a Focus forte, and our engineers in Asia Pacific and Africa worked with engineers in Europe to refine new Focus into a better car to drive in the urban city and on the open highways. We firmly believe the introduction of Focus TDCi with innovative PowerShift automatic transmission is exceptionally well suited to Asia."
John Parker, Executive Vice President
Asia Pacific and Africa, Ford Motor Company
In 2007, the first Ford Focus TDCi was overwhelmingly successful and sold like hot cakes. This year, the New Ford Focus TDCi is destined to make a new milestone in Thai automotive market with the innovative 6-speed PowerShift automatic transmission, the first time it is available in Asia. The diesel-engine passenger car will continue to bring to the market impressive power, responsiveness, fuel-efficiency, more contemporary look and significant road handling. It is available in the Ghia 4-door sedan and the Sport hatch body styling.
Ford 'Kinetic Design'
The most influential visual enhancement to the new Ford Focus TDCi is its dramatic new front featuring 'kinetic design' elements. Rather than just update a bumper or grille as many manufacturers do, Ford's Asia-Pacific and Africa design team working in Australia took a 'whole vehicle' approach in applying kinetic design form language to the exterior.
Kinetic design elements such as the large trapezoidal opening below the bumperline, new bonnet with defined contours, and new upper grille (with larger Ford badge) dominate the new Focus front design. The new 16-inch alloy wheels also add sportier styling to the passenger car. In all, the new Focus is visually confident and modern.
Great emphasis has been placed by the design team on the shape and appearance of the new headlamps. And with the new appearance comes improved illumination, as the dramatic swept back housings offer improved light distribution, 8 degrees better side lighting, and further reduced glare and scattered light. The bodyside profile is now slightly more muscular, the result of adding more dominance to the distinct bold wheel lips. This gives the Focus its confident and muscular stance. The bodyside styling is clean and uncluttered.
The rear of new Focus includes as many design improvements as does the front. At first glance it is the long clear tail lamp lenses that identify this as the new Focus. The rear track is slightly wider – the result of a new range of alloy wheels with more offset developed specifically for new Focus. A wider track benefits new Focus aesthetically as well as dynamically.
Inside Ford's new Focus, the emphasis is on enhancing overall comfort levels with high-quality materials and improving ergonomics.
The driver now sees large-face tachometer and speedometer set deeply into individual binnacles. Positioned above are small-face water temperature and fuel gauges. Each surrounded by a silver bezel. Between the two large gauges is an LCD information screen displaying time, outside temperature, tripmeter and odometer. The LCD screen also displays menu options for distance to empty, average speed, and average fuel consumption. At night, the centre stack controls are illuminated in soft red light which is more soothing at night.
A new premium centre console has been designed with an emphasis on improved comfort and function. It features a moveable soft armrest which slides forward 80mm, two cup holders with butterfly lids, a coin holder and a card holder. The Ghia model continues to impress with a host of comfort features such as dual-zone air conditioning, 6-way power adjustable driver's seat, unique 16x6.5-inch alloy wheels and premium leather interior.
The new Focus TDCi is available in the Ghia and the exciting Focus Sport.
The Focus Ghia (sedan only) offers the following features:
- 2.0-litre DuraTorq turbodiesel with six-speed PowerShift automatic
- ESP in combination with DuraTorq engine
- Body-colour exterior door handles with chrome accents
- Satin chrome interior door release
- Chrome surround on lower trapezoidal grille
- Bodyside moulding with chrome insert`
- Dual-zone air conditioning system with electronic automatic temperature control
- Illuminated vanity mirrors on interior sun visors
- 6-way power adjustable driver's seat
- Parking Aid sensors (rear)
- Unique 16x6.5-inch alloy wheels
- Soft beige leather interior
- Four-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel
- Ghia badging on C-pillar and boot lid
The Focus Sport (hatch only) offers the following distinguishing features:
- 2.0-litre DuraTorq turbodiesel engines
- ESP in combination with DuraTorq engine
- Unique 16x7-inch alloy wheels
- European-tuned sports suspension
- Blackened headlamp surrounds
- Body colour rear spoiler
- Three-spoke leather-wrapped steering wheel
- High quality leather seat
New Ford PowerShift automatic transmission
"With the new Ford PowerShift transmission we are introducing the transmission of the future. This automatic six-speed double-clutch unit provides the efficiency of a manual and the full comfort of an automatic with sophisticated dynamics thanks to uninterrupted torque from the double-clutch technology – it is therefore perfectly suited to the new Ford Focus."
Dr. Sigurd Limbach
Manager Automatic Transmission, Ford of Europe
A major new innovation to Focus is the Ford PowerShift six-speed double clutch automatic transmission system combined with Ford's 2.0-litre DuraTorq turbodiesel engine. Against its competitors in Asia, the Ford Focus is the first to offer customers efficient diesel engine technology in the C-car segment and the first to offer the smooth efficiency of the innovative PowerShift automatic transmission.
The 2.0-litre DuraTorq turbodiesel engine produces 100kW. More importantly and significant for urban driving, the DuraTorq engine delivers stout torque at low engine speeds. This engine offers win-win qualities. It offers customers best-in-class fuel efficiency and offers responsive acceleration with a maximum torque output of 320Nm – peaking to 340Nm during brief overboost periods. In ASEAN markets where diesel fuel and petrol fuel are near price parity, the DuraTorq engine brings definite dynamic and efficiency advantages to Focus.
The new Ford PowerShift transmission is a completely new six-speed double-clutch transmission combining best-in-class fuel efficiency and driving dynamics of a manual gearbox with the ease of a premium automatic transmission.
The PowerShift automatic transmission is a development of Getrag Ford Transmissions GmbH as a 50:50 GETRAG/Ford joint venture. The PowerShift consists essentially of two layshaft transmissions working in parallel, each with its own wet clutch unit. Thanks to the layout of the intermediate shafts – one carrying the 'uneven' gears 1, 3 and 5, and the other the even gears 2, 4 and 6 – subsequent gear changes can be prepared by pre-selecting the next gear while in motion and at full power. The change then takes place through the opposed activation of both clutches, the clutch activations being co-ordinated such that no torque interruption occurs. From the driver's seat, the sensation is smooth acceleration – much smoother than a conventional automatic transmission.
In contrast to a conventional automatic transmission, the basic technical configuration of the Ford PowerShift transmission offers numerous advantages. It does not require any complex sub-systems such as torque converters, planetary gear sets, multiple wet clutches and multiple bands – all of which significantly reduce gearbox efficiency due to increased inertia and drag torque effects.
The result is impressive: the Ford PowerShift transmission now provides the ease and convenience of a conventional automatic transmission coupled with the performance of a manual transmission. It delivers fast and sporty shifts while maintaining high degrees of shift smoothness. An additional advantage of the Ford PowerShift transmission is its high torque capacity making it the ideal partner for modern high performance turbodiesel engines such as the 2.0-litre DuraTorq.
The fuel economy data of the Sport TDCi and Ghia TDCi with Ford PowerShift prove how efficient this gearbox technology is. New Focus models equipped with PowerShift are homologated (Europe) to a combined fuel economy of just 5.8l/100km.
In integrating the Ford PowerShift automatic transmission into the new Focus TDCi range, particular attention was paid to the maximum use of the abundant torque from the 2.0-litre DuraTorq engine with a peak of 320Nm (340Nm over short periods in 'overboost mode'). The system has been calibrated to deliver a shifting strategy that excludes, as much as possible downshifting or kickdown – for example, reverse switching of gears 5-4-3 when high acceleration is required.
"This calibration offers our customers many advantages because the lowering of the relative engine speed level has a particularly positive effect on fuel consumption and driving comfort. And thanks to the high torque reserves of the DuraTorq engine over a broad torque spectrum, we can deliver enthusiastic performance," explains Limbach.
Driving with the Ford PowerShift transmission is as simple and easy as a conventional automatic transmission. For the driver, the system uses a standard automatic gear lever in the centre console with the usual P, R, N and D settings available.
When the D (drive) setting is selected, the gear lever can also be moved to the right and into another adjacent position which enables the driver to select the gears manually. In full automatic mode, the enjoyment of relaxed driving is the same as for a conventional automatic transmission, particularly for start response and very slow speed 'creep' characteristics common in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Special efforts to further minimise fuel consumption were implemented with the PowerShift system calibration: The 'neutral idle control' feature reduces the drag torque for the engine when the vehicle is stationary with the gear shifter in the D position and the brakes are applied.
New Focus Safety: Ford Intelligent Protection System
Ford Focus has always been acclaimed for its excellent on-road driving behaviour. Focus is engineered to flatter the novice driver and reward the expert with assured and predictable chassis control, precise steering and confident, benchmark handling with excellent braking ability.
The Ford Focus demonstrated as early as 2004 what is feasible in terms of safety in the compact class. There are many contributing factors that came together to achieve high levels of occupant safety – the finely tuned combination of a rigid passenger cabin, efficient crush zones and the specific functions that give the Ford Intelligent Protection System its name. The goal is to provide Focus occupants with a high degree of safety and protection in real-world driving conditions.
All new Focus models benefit from the addition of an emergency hazard warning light activation system as standard. It aids the driver in certain hazardous driving situations, by automatically switching on the hazard warning lights whenever the brake performance is more than 6-7m/s², which is about 60-70 percent of possible brake performance (10m/s²). Once switched on the hazard warning lights can be switched off automatically by the system, or at any time by pressing the hazard warning light switch.
With this new system, the risk of suffering a rear impact whilst braking hard is significantly reduced, as following motorists are warned to slow rapidly by the flashing indicators of the braking Focus.
Electronic Stability Program (ESP) with Traction Control is now standard on Focus Sport TDCi and Focus Ghia TDCi with PowerShift. ESP is engineered to assist the driver to maintain vehicle stability in extreme situations. It does so by sensing the stability of the car via several sensors. The ESP system responds to potential loss of stability by manipulating the braking system and can apply braking effort to individual wheels while reducing engine power output to assist the drive to maintain stability.
Focus Driving Quality
Ford Focus’ advanced and friction-optimised components, the newly developed Control Blade multilink rear suspension, the front MacPherson spring struts and the semi-isolated front subframe combined to give the Focus the optimum balance of ride, handling, steering precision and comfort.
The increased wheelbase and numerous improved details to axle and spring elements, bearings and anti-roll bars moved the Focus story on even further. Notably, the introduction of Ford's electric-hydraulic power-assisted steering (EHPAS) gave previous generation Focus new levels of refinement and ensured its continued position as segment leader for driving dynamics, a key Ford brand characteristic that remains a true passion for the engineering team.
Detail changes have been made to make the Focus quieter in terms of NVH (noise, vibration, harshness). This engine benefits from a new insulated, weight reduced cowl panel, for optimum acoustics and a new carpet with a modified heavy duty coating for further sound deadening.
In addition, the inlet tract and the coupling to the exhaust system were optimised. The NVH improvement package is rounded off with a calibration modification to the DuraTorq engine to further reduce the combustion noise when starting from cold as well as during transient driving manoeuvres, and also a newly adapted engine cover. The outcome of these measures is a smoother ride that gives just as much punch.
Focus Dynamics – A Driver's Car
Ford’s relentless development and industry-leading technical expertise ensures that Focus is a genuine driver’s car. It gives the impression of being connected to the road, reacting intuitively between the road and the driver, with smooth and linear feedback and enhanced predictability under all driving conditions. Excellent road feedback and precise steering control are enhanced by a high degree of torsional stiffness within the body structure, providing a fluid ride quality.
A stiff front subframe is complemented by the rear Control Blade suspension with its hydrobush design featuring a system of water filled pockets connected to an oil reservoir to deliver carefully tuned damping force. To ensure that initial roll movements of the vehicle are better controlled, the engineers implemented an improved rear anti-roll bar drop link with special low friction double ball joints.
The Focus EHPAS system is not dependent on engine speed, making it exceptionally energy efficient. This results in a fuel saving of up to 0.2l/100km, or roughly 3 percent versus traditional hydraulic PAS systems, as EHPAS effectively ‘reads’ the driving environment and responds accordingly. Also contributing to the Focus' accurate and responsive steering control are a stiff steering column, stiff suspension and steering gear bushes, and the geometric precision of the steering and suspension systems.
The Focus EHPAS system makes low speed manoeuvres easy while preserving precision on the open road. Large diameter brakes also provide excellent ‘feel’, optimum emergency stopping power and long brake pad life.
Focus Brakes – Assured performance
The Focus braking system is summed up in three words: confident, intuitive and comfortable. Engineered and built without compromise to deliver assured performance and to reduce braking distances to a minimum, the braking system delivers a very smooth and defined initial bite at low speeds to optimise urban performance. The relationship between pedal travel and braking force is perfectly balanced, bringing a great feeling of confidence at all speeds.
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Michigan, manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 229,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company’s coreand affiliated automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury, Volvo Carand Mazda. The company provides financial services through Ford MotorCredit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.ford.com.