Cape Town - Ford has launched its second-generation Figo in South Africa.
The automaker hopes to take on local compact-car rivals with its stylish, tech-packed city car now available in hatchback and sedan guise.
Tracey Delate, general marketing manager for Ford Sub-Saharan Africa, said: “The all-new Figo demonstrates that a compact car doesn’t mean sacrificing quality, design or features, and offers a lot more in each of these areas than consumers would ever expect for the money.”
Here are 10 things you should know about the new Ford Figo:
1 It's available as a sedan for the first time
The big news about the new Figo is it's available in sedan guise. As you can see from the images below it's a quite a stylish offering in the compact market. The Figo uses the automaker's Kinetic 2.0 design language, seen in the latest Fusion and Focus.
It's Aston Martin-inspired chromed grille, stretched headlights, and sharp crease on the boot lid, make the Figo the most premium looking car in its class.
2 There's a diesel hatchback
The new hatchback can be powered with a choice of two four-cylinder 1.5 litre engines; a 77kW/138Nm petrol and 74kW/215Nm diesel. The petrol version has a claimed fuel consumption of 5.6 litres/100km, the diesel unit is capable of 4.1 litres/100km. The sedan is only available in petrol guise.
Both engines are mated to a five-speed manual while a six-speed PowerShift Auto is available for the 1.5 Titanium (both hatchback and sedan).
Click here for full specs
3 It's fun to drive
The diesel hatch is a winner; the power delivery is seamless and with 215Nm there's minimal turbo-lag. It's diesel units makes overtaking a breeze easy and is perfect for city driving.
The petrol version isn't as rev-happy as I thought it would be and the auto for both derivatives can be temperamental especially during a spirited drive.
Despite its city-focused suspension it handles potholes and uneven road with ease.
The Ford Figo offers the right mix of style, fun and practicality. While isn’t exactly a driver’s delight it’s pleasant enough to drive around SA's cities. It's not as agile or as fun as its more advanced (read: expensive) Ford siblings. However, given its target market, it does the job of a city car admirably.
4 It's the only diesel hatch in its class...
As you can see above, the Figo hatchback holds its own against top rivals.
Whilst it has the most power (at 82kW), the Polo Vivo packs 155Nm compared to the hatchback's 136Nm. In terms of fuel consumption, Renault's Sandero beats it by 0.7 litres/100km at 5.2 litres/100km.
5 The Figo sedan faces tough competition in SA
Like the hatchback, the sedan derivative is edged out in torque by the the Polo Vivo. The sedan has a marginal advantage in terms of fuel consumption in auto guise. Ford has set its sights on the Volkswagen Polo (and Polo Vivo) as well as the Toyota Etios.
Other rivals include Suzuki's Swift and Tata's Bolt.
6 It's bigger and bolder
The new model is based on an evolution of the Figo's platform though its stretched in every dimension except height and all the panels are new. It's more powerful, has increased boot space and boasts many technological enhancements (such as Ford Sync).
The new Figo is also sold with a standard two-year or 40 000km service plan, available only as an option for the outgoing hatch.
7 You can Sync your Figo
The interior is completely redesigned borrowing many elements from its Fiesta and Focus siblings. MyFord, a first-in-class feature (standard in Ambiente and Trend), offers drivers a platform for storing, mounting and charging mobile devices, MP3 players and is equipped with satnav. When not in use, the dock can be closed.
The new model sports Ford's Sync, the automaker's connectivity system, (standard on Titanium trim) and allows drivers to use voice commands for telephone calls, messaging and audio.
To encourage responsible driving, the Figo Titanium features Ford's MyKey functionality.
Ford marketing manager Tracey Delate explains: "With MyKey, Figo owners can set sensible restrictions for drivers with less experience. For instance, they can activate a maximum speed limit, or a persistent seatbelt minder that mutes the audio system volume and continues to play a chime until front-seat occupants fasten their seatbelts."
8 There are three trim levels available
Three trim and equipment levels are available - Ambiente, Trend and Titanium. In terms of safety, it's equipped with driver and passenger airbags, while the Titanium model features six airbags including side and curtain.
Ambiente: includes both body styles and engine choices.
• Body-coloured bumpers and rear fog lights
• Bluetooth-enabled, four-speaker audio system with USB and Aux inputs.
• Driver and passenger airbags.
Trend (adds to the Ambiente spec):
• Colour-coded door handles
• 14" alloy wheels
• Front fog lamps
• Electric mirrors
• Electric front and rear windows
• 60/40 split for rear seats (hatch model only)
• Climate control
• Ford SYNC with Bluetooth and voice control.
• Steering-wheel mounted audio controls
• ESP with hill-launch assist (Titanium PowerShift models)
More from Ford
Ford's new Mustang, a first for South Africa in right-hand drive, will arrive locally in December 2015. Want more performance? In 2016, Ford's hottest hatch yet, the Focus RS, is set to arrive on our shores.
Ford Figo hatchback
1.5 Ambiente - R158 900
1.5 Trend - R167 900
1.5 Titanium - R181 900
1.5 Titanium AT - R203 900
1.5 TDCi Ambiente - R189 900
1.5 TDCi Trend - R199 900
1.5 Ambiente - R160 900
1.5 Trend - 169 900
1.5 Titanium AT - R205 900