A tank full of petrol for € 40, which brings back distant memories … However, this is what is on offer today. the new Ford Focus Flexifuel, as long as you refuel at one of the 2,800 French stations that offer bioethanol E85 to the pump. Remember that E10 or SP 95 fuels are also accepted by the car, whose computer will adapt the engine management accordingly.
Born in 2018, the current Ford Focus is offered, on the occasion of his mid-career remodeling, in this 125 hp 1.0 version that combines 48V microhybridization, E85 compatibility and even Powershift robotic gearbox, as in our test car. Enough to attract racing enthusiasts who don’t want diesel (they’ve disappeared from the manufacturer’s VP catalog), gasoline (too expensive to use), full hybrids (it’s reserved for the Ford Kuga), or more restrictive electric use.
The Focus receives a slightly redesigned front with a 3 cm high grille that now includes the brand logo, new shields and redesigned LED lights on the front and back. We will notice its evolution more easily by sliding inside the passenger compartment, where there is a giant 13 ” tablet on the control panel (8 ” above), occupying the Sync 4 connected infotainment system of the Mach-E electric SUV.
Price Ford Focus Flexifuel 2022
The call price of the Ford Focus Flexifuel is just under 30,000 euros with its Titanium X Business version in the manual gearbox version. For our test version ST-Line X with its most sporty presentation, coupled to the automated gearbox, costs € 32,500, ie € 1,200 less than the 155 hp Powershift petrol engine of the same version , more powerful but without access to vegetable fuel. The ST-Line X team is complete (see all equipment on the next page) with the notable exception of adaptive cruise control, which is offered in a driving assistance package that includes blind spot monitoring and smart headlights. for an amount of € 800.
In addition to the price of E85 fuel, more than twice as low as the SP95, this Focus Flexifuel also benefits from free registration in most regions (read the note in the Ethanol file to find out all about E85). With 125 g / km of CO2, does not even need to count on the reduction of 40% for the calculation of a possible sanction, it escapes by nature in the bottom. Finally, for professionals, remember that VAT is recoverable at 80% of this fuel.
The advantage of a light restyling is that it has the merit of preserving the qualities of the original model, without distorting them. So we are happy the excellent road behavior known to the Focus with its rigorous chassis, even playful if provoked, especially in this version ST-Line X with sports suspension. On the other side of the coin, we would have liked more comfort when the coating deteriorates, despite a reasonable 17-inch air support.
The 125 hp 3-cylinder engine is smooth and pleasant, quiet, vibration-free, but a bit rough during heavy pick-ups. This is where micro-hybridization below 48 volts comes into play, as indicated by the digital dashboard indicator which also shows the multiple phases of energy recovery when lifting the foot. There are three driving modes in the program, which offer increased throttle pedal sensitivity and more responsive handling of the 7-speed dual-clutch quick transmission as you switch modes between Eco, Normal and Sport. The performances are never mind-boggling (11.1 s from 0 to 100 km / h) but are enough to ensure a smooth ride appreciated by passengers, even increasing the pace.
In the city, the Focus is very soft, as long as you do not use the brake lock function when stopped (Auto Hold) preventing the car from overtaking if you release the brake with a red light, which here involves a nasty blow to the ‘boot. more embarrassing urban consumption is especially high, even taking into account the additional 23% that is usually calculated for operation with the E85 that fills our tank. In the dense conditions of urban traffic that we found, it was impossible to go down from 10 l / 100 km …
A confirmation of the difference between a limited micro-hybridization, which does not allow the evolution only in the electric motor, and the especially efficient hybrid motors in the city precisely, like the Kuga Hybrid Flexifuel that we had measured to little more than 6 l / 100 km. under these conditions. On the other hand, the picture is much more positive on the road in quiet driving (7.7 l / 100 km) and even on the highway at 110 km / h (6.5 l / 100 km) , where the 52 l tank will guarantee a very generous autonomy. Finally, consider the effectiveness of the functional adaptive cruise control system stop and go in hats.
A compact sedan compatible with E85 fuel in a manufacturer’s catalog, this is simply a unique case in the market! In order to compete with its competitors, it is necessary to divide them into several categories. First, the sheer number of classic gasoline compacts that could be adapted to run on this fuel by installing a dedicated engine management unit. It will be necessary to add approximately € 1,000 to its base price, which does not necessarily mean exceeding the rather greedy prices of the Ford, certainly very well equipped. But none will offer the peace of mind of a concrete preparation made in the factory.
We can also look at hybrids, whose urban consumption will be much more interesting. However, they are very rare in this segment where the Toyota Corolla (from € 29,300) and the Hyundai Ionic Hybrid (from € 28,450) stand out. Finally, some customers may be hesitant about electric models if their use is compatible, but the price is higher and the perfect versatility of a thermal vehicle should be set aside.
Find the test results and the prices, equipment and data sheet of the Focus Flexifuel Hybrid E85 on the next page.