Our first steer in the all-new Ford Kuga on UK roads. The new Kuga has grown larger for its second-era, adding increased practicality, high quality, tools ranges and refinement within the course of, in response to the Blue Oval.
The increase in size can be attributable to it now being twinned with the US-market Ford Escape, a place where greater almost always mean better for buyers. However simply because it might trace its roots throughout the Atlantic, don’t expect the brand new Kuga to be softly set-up and brash to take a look at; the brand new Kuga could be very much a automotive for the European market, with bespoke chassis tuning and styling revisions.
Four engines are provided: 138bhp and 161bhp 2.zero diesels and 148bhp and 178bhp 1.6-litre petrols. It’s the more potent diesel we’re testing here, full with Ford’s new Clever All-Wheel Drive system and a six-speed twin-clutch automatic Powershift gearbox.
A different proposition to the Kuga we knew before. Whereas the primary-technology mannequin’s extra compact dimensions led to a very automobile-like drive, the new Kuga’s improve in measurement pushes it firmly into mid-size SUV territory alongside the likes of the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4 and away from the Nissan Qashqai, with altered driving characteristics as a result.
Regardless of the increase in dimension, the Kuga remains to be billed as the driver’s SUV. It’s a really stiff car, one you could handle and steer in a method that just about belies its measurement from the commanding driving position.
It’s not quite as agile or mild on its ft because the old Kuga, but, thanks to the effectiveness of the all-wheel drive system, retains poise and a willingness to be pushed few, if any, others within the class can match.
That stiffness does result in a reasonably agency trip, notably at low speeds. It’s never harsh or noisy, nevertheless it’s actually not the simple-going consolation you would possibly count on of a automotive of this size.
The engine/gearbox combination is one other high point. The diesel engine is torquey and the gearbox holds again on upshifts to permit it’s revved and the efficiency to be exploited. It’s also an especially refined unit, and the gearbox gives easy and seamless shifts without the hesitancy some dual-clutch transmissions suffer from.
What the elevated dimension does carry is loads more space. The boot is now up to 456 litres in capacity and rear passengers are additionally significantly better off for house, with an 82mm increase in length bringing noticeably more legroom.
The front of the cabin can also be a pleasing environment. High quality is good, and the controls all properly weighted. It’s just a shame that there’s such a bewildering array of buttons in all sorts of places; some kind of simplified central management system is required here.
In making the Kuga greater and shifting its positioning, Ford has nonetheless managed to keep hold of the automobile’s trump card: how good it’s to drive.
That you simply additionally get a better high quality product with improved tools ranges thrown in for a worth that works out around £1000 less than an equal previous era Kuga, then there’s little to stop this going straight to the top of the class.tags: 2013 Ford Kuga, All New Ford Kuga, All New Ford Kuga UEFA Champion League, Ford, Ford Kuga