Ford of Europe has reimagined its smallest car by making it a cheap five-door hatchback.
Say goodbye to the Fiat 500-based, three-door-only KA and greet the India-made, five-door-only KA+. It looks virtually the same as the Figo sold in India, but Ford has upgraded the KA+ to better suit more demanding Euro tastes. It rides lower than the Figo and benefits from a re-engineered front subframe, along with tweaked steering, dampers, springs, and a new front anti-roll bar. It also boasts new engine mounts and a revised rear torsion beam axle to make it feel more upscale than the more humble Figo.
The Blue Oval says all these changes have made the KA+ “agile, fun-to-drive and comfortable” while offering superior practicality compared to segment rivals. Slightly shorter than the Fiesta, but 29 mm taller, the KA+ hatchback has a generous trunk capacity of 270 liters which can be further expanded by folding down the 60/40-split rear seats. In addition, no less than 21 stowage compartments are spread throughout the cabin for your miscellaneous items.
Europeans will be stuck with a naturally-aspirated 1.2-liter gasoline engine which will come in 70 hp and 85 hp flavors. Output is going to be delivered to the front axle through a five-speed manual gearbox and Ford says the four-cylinder engine has been optimized for Europe. It’s going to be cheap to run as the KA+ will have a combined fuel consumption of only 5 liters / 100 km, with corresponding CO2 emissions of 114 g/km.
To achieve these numbers, Ford has installed low-rolling-resistance tires and a bunch of aero tweaks such as the optimized lower front spoiler lip and grille openings. In select markets, the 85-hp version of the engine will work with a modified version of the five-speed transmission featuring a longer final-drive ratio and a bespoke calibration to further cut CO2 emissions to only 110 g/km.
All versions of the KA+ will come as standard with power front windows and mirrors, six airbags, remote central locking, and safety tech such as electronic stability control (with hill start assist), and a speed limiter. Go for the more powerful 85 hp model and you can add optional goodies like a leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise control, heated front seats, electric climate control, and DAB digital radio. In addition, the punchier version has 15-inch alloy wheels, power rear windows, heated/power door mirrors, and rear parking sensors in case you have problems maneuvering a sub-4m car.
Available to order starting this month, the Ford KA+ kicks off at €9,990 in Germany and from £8,995 in the U.K. Deliveries are scheduled to commence later this year.
Gallery: 2017 Ford KA+
Big Value in a Small Package: All-New Ford KA+ Offers Outstanding Space, Economy and Driving Fun
- Ford reveals the all-new KA+ 5-door hatchback in Europe, which delivers outstanding interior space, fuel efficiency and fun-to-drive dynamics at an affordable price
- The KA+ cabin provides space for five passengers with class-leading front headroom and rear legroom, plus 21 stowage locations, within a sub-4 metre total length
- New 1.2-litre Duratec petrol engine with twin-independent variable camshaft timing offers responsive performance with 114 g/km CO2 emissions and 5.0 l/100 km (56.5 mpg) fuel efficiency**
- Unique chassis specification delivers agile and enjoyable driving dynamics; powertrain, body and chassis tuned for reduced noise levels and enhanced refinement
- All-new Ford KA+ available for customers in Europe to order from June, with starting price of €9,990 in Germany and £8,995 in the U.K.
COLOGNE, Germany, June 8, 2016 – Ford of Europe today revealed the all-new KA+ small car, which delivers outstanding interior space, excellent fuel efficiency and fun-to-drive dynamics at a value price.
Joining Ford’s small-car line-up alongside the best-selling Fiesta,* the KA+ provides an attractive new alternative for European buyers who want a stylish, well-equipped and high-quality small car at a price point starting at €9,990 in Germany and £8,995 in the U.K.
“Ford has a long history of offering affordable small cars that are practical, economical and fun-to-drive,” said Jim Farley, executive vice president and president, Europe, Middle East and Africa, Ford Motor Company. “KA+ is true to that tradition, packing a huge amount of value into a compact car that delivers agile driving dynamics and a comfortable interior with class-leading front headroom and rear legroom.”
Generous space for five
Available for European customers to order from June with first deliveries later this year, the all-new Ford KA+ is a 5-door hatchback based on Ford’s global small-car platform, and offers generous space for five people at an overall length of less than 4 metres.
The KA+ is slightly shorter than the Fiesta, but 29 millimetres taller, with an optimised interior that provides class-leading front headroom and best-in-class legroom for rear passengers.
The KA+ provides outstanding every-day practicality with 270 litres of luggage space – enough to accommodate two large suitcases – plus 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and 21 stowage locations for small items throughout the cabin.
Stowage areas include MyFord Dock in the centre of the instrument panel that enables occupants to store, mount and charge mobile devices such as phones and navigation systems, and front door bins that can each hold a 1.0-litre bottle, a 0.6-litre bottle and a small umbrella. A hidden stowage bin within the end of the instrument panel is only accessible when the driver’s door is open, allowing valuables to be hidden out of sight.
Taking inspiration from Ford’s latest design language, the stylish, well-proportioned exterior features the distinctive high-mounted trapezoidal grille with large, swept-back headlamps. All KA+ models offer a smart, integrated finish with chrome detailing for the front grille, together with body-coloured bumpers, door handles and door mirrors.
The interior features an attractive grained finish on the instrument panel and hard-wearing, contemporary trim materials in a stylish dark charcoal colour scheme. Distinctive chrome accents are applied in tactile and highly visible areas such as the door release handles, centre console control knobs and air vents.
Responsive and economical powertrain
The all-new KA+ features a simplified powertrain line-up based on an efficient new 1.2-litre Duratec petrol engine to offer maximum value to European consumers. Available with a choice of 70 PS and 85 PS power outputs, the 1.2-litre engine is derived from the same family as the 1.25-litre engine in the Fiesta, and features twin-independent variable camshaft timing technology to enhance performance, fuel efficiency and emissions.
Combined with a standard five-speed manual transmission, the 1.2-litre engine has been tuned to deliver smooth and responsive performance, with a broad spread of torque that makes the car easy and fun to drive in both city motoring and on longer journeys.
Fuel efficiency has been enhanced using optimised calibration, low-friction engine oil and regenerative charging, which saves fuel by maintaining efficient charge levels in the vehicle battery by capturing ‘free’ electrical energy when drivers coast or brake.
Low rolling resistance tyres and enhanced aerodynamic details, such as an optimised front lower spoiler lip and grille openings, also contribute to improved efficiency. Both engine options achieve CO2 emissions of 114 g/km, with combined fuel consumption of 5.0 l/100 km (56.5 mpg).**
An additional 85 PS high-efficiency variant is available in certain markets with a raised final drive ratio and unique calibration to deliver CO2 emissions of 110g/km.
Agile, fun-to-drive and comfortable
The all-new KA+ has been developed to deliver agile, fun-to-drive dynamics that match European customer expectations.
To deliver the desired dynamic performance, the KA+ features a unique chassis specification with specially developed features including the steering system, springs and dampers, front anti-roll bar, rear torsion beam axle and tyres, along with re-engineered front sub-frame and engine mounts.
The vehicle also has undergone an intensive development program to ensure improved comfort and refinement in typical European driving conditions, with a range of measures to minimise wind noise, road noise and powertrain noise levels.
Following final tuning and development carried out at Ford’s European proving ground in Lommel, Belgium, and during extensive test drives on European roads, the KA+ provides customers with an enjoyable and comfortable driving experience.
Comprehensive standard equipment, with two series choices
Customers can select from two KA+ series options, with a standard 70 PS model, and an 85 PS model that also features:
- Manual air-conditioning
- Ford’s SYNC voice-activated communications and entertainment system with AppLink that enables voice-activation of a range of smartphone apps
- Ford MyKey, which allows owners to set maximum speed and audio volume limits, and ensure safety features are not disabled. MyKey is ideal technology for parents who are allowing young and inexperienced drivers to use their car
All KA+ models deliver a comprehensive standard specification including power front windows and door mirrors, remote central locking, safety system with six airbags, Electronic Stability Control with Hill Start Assist, Speed Limiter, and Ford Easy Fuel.
When choosing the 85 PS model, customers also can specify a range of attractive optional features including electronic climate control, leather steering wheel with cruise control, heated front seats, DAB audio system, rear parking sensors, power rear windows and heated/power folding door mirrors, privacy glass and 15-inch alloy wheels.
“Choosing a compact car should not mean having to compromise,” said Darren Palmer, small car vehicle line director, Ford of Europe. “Our all-new KA+ lives up to the high standards set by our Ford Fiesta, B-MAX and EcoSport compact cars by delivering the style, space, advanced technology and refinement that European customers want.”