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The invitation to the Russian premiere of Focus III after six months of sales of the model, countless single and comparative tests and the resource test of the 60-hour “Driving” was perceived as strange. But “I believe, because this is ridiculous”: the official arrival of “Focus” in Russia is associated precisely with the appearance of the best-selling performance of the Ford C-grader - a four-door sedan.
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Pictures of the new sedan have bypassed the Network in a few turns, but when you get acquainted live, as a rule, very serious differences can be revealed. After all, it seems that it is so difficult to add something to the laconic vivid image of the five-door hatch. However, the sedan looks almost more harmonious. Reminiscences with alterations from hatchbacks, even as successful as sedans of past generations Focus, Astra and Megane, do not occur. It is understandable, because each body of the new global “Focus” was developed separately, by itself. And it is felt. First of all, in the dynamism of the image - it somewhat resembles a reduced Mondeo, but sharper and lighter. Chopped edges passing from the doors to the rear wings, an integrated visor-wing on the trunk lid - all this gives the exterior an assertive grace. Having looked at the sedan, you look reluctantly at the hatch, now it seems that he is missing something …
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Apparently, in order not to deprive the sedan of its integrity, they decided not to increase the base compared to the hatchback. Therefore, they are indistinguishable by internal habitability. It is expected that an 18-cm increase in length added space for luggage, moreover, noticeably. After the ridiculous 248 liters at the hatchback (measurements ZR, 2011, No. 11), where two good suitcases completely exhaust the entire space, the sedan can be safely loaded with a dozen packages from Auchan - its volume is more than 100 liters, just those eaten by a full-size spare wheel. And with long-lengths there will be no problems - the back sofa folds in a proportion of 2/3.
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In the movement, the sedan and hatch are indistinguishable. The same dense suspension, the same moderately sharp steering. Only the effort on it is somehow artificial - there is no trace of the intelligibility of the steering past of the "Focus". Changing the settings of the electric power amplifier in the menu did not change the picture: the steering wheel may become heavier, sharper, but naturalness is not detected. It’s a pity, because the chassis allows you to drive quickly, comfortably and without breakdowns, as on a good thoroughbred “German”. Excellent sound insulation and low vibration-loaded engines speak in favor of the cruise navigation. In our 180-kilometer march from Gelendzhik to Lazarevsky, you could find all the conditions for checking acoustic comfort. In the mode of 100-120 km / h in the cabin, flip flops from passing road patches are only occasionally heard, and outside the asphalt, gravel and pebbles do not hammer on arches and thresholds - the noise is very well balanced.
As for the engines, the sympathies instantly turned out to be on the side of the 140-horsepower turbodiesel of the Duratorq family. By the silence of work and vibration load it can not be distinguished from gasoline counterparts. But how much joy he brings with his confident incendiary accelerations! Consumption with frequent overtaking on serpentines was not more than 7.3 l / 100 km. But gasoline engines do not differ in excessive appetite: a 125-horsepower 1.6 liter ate 8.3 liters, and a similar 2-liter “four” (150 hp) per liter is more than 1.6, thanks to variable phases and talented “Automatic machine”. But they are far from “diesel happiness”.
For clarity, aggregate comparison, all engines were tested with the new PowerShift automatic transmission - a Ford 6-speed robot with two clutches - already known by Mondeo and some minivans. Moreover, on the younger combinations - 1.6 liters, 125 hp and 1.6 l, 105 h.p. (will appear in January next year) - a box with a “dry” clutch is used, and a “wet” one is prepared for more powerful 2-liter gasoline and diesel versions.
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Bi-Xenon headlights with static turning sections are effective (Premium Light package - 36, 000 rubles)
At city speeds, the robot tries to climb higher, for example, from 40 km / h to take out in fourth gear. And if the diesel engine cope with this task effortlessly, then the 125-horsepower “four”, revealing its momentary bins of 159 Nm only to 4000 rpm, obviously does not want to accelerate from revolutions below 1500 rpm and does so under the loud protest of the valves. At the same time, at speeds of 70–80 km / h, when driving without acceleration on a level road, the robot stubbornly keeps fifth gear at 2200–2500 rpm, completely refusing to even forcibly shift to sixth. The sounds that PowerShift makes when coasting at pedestrian speeds caused caution: it was as if actuators were ringing in its bowels, not knowing which gear clutch they needed to block - even the first or second. In general, the box is good and it feels no worse than the Volkswagen analogue: fast, timely and smooth switching. It is unpleasantly distinguished from DSG by one thing - thoughtfulness when moving down in kickdown, especially when you need a transition from sixth to third. From time to time I had to help the box with quasimanual mode - a couple of seconds before overtaking, dropping one or two steps. Although the process of sequential gear selection does not have this. And it’s very unfortunate that the two triangular buttons on the side of the selector are an interesting and stylish solution (like a flag on a sequencer), and error-free: the upper one is up, the lower one is down. Just use them uncomfortable. To do this, it is unnatural to bend the brush, because the elbow rests against the unregulated armrest. The selector itself does not sparkle with informational content either: a couple of nonsense to miss the drive is a bit nonsense: it is too softly fixed in the positions, and the wide wings make it impossible to clearly orientate in which position it is located. True, you will find yourself in a sports mode, which in itself is fearless, but it makes you think … However, looking at the price list, you immediately forgive PowerShift a lot - it is at least half the price of the Wolfsburg brother: the surcharge for it is only 32, 000 rubles.
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We summarize the answer to the question: is it worth overpaying 10, 000 rubles for a Ford Focus III sedan? Quite! And not even because of the appearance, which, in my opinion, is winning. Rather, to finally get an intelligible amount of luggage and avoid ridicule from the owners of the Solaris and Sandero hatchbacks.
Next year, a station wagon will come to Russia in order to finally rehabilitate the model with regard to the tight trunk. Also in January, a new motor will appear - the youngest version of the 1.6 TiVCT unit with a capacity of 85 hp, designed for corporate parks, taxi services, etc. Among the technical bells and whistles is the Ford SYNC system, which allows you to control a number of car systems using voice.