Ford South Africa has confirmed that the all-new Ford Kuga will be available in South Africa from 2013. Although the Kuga nomenclature is a recent addition to the South African market, the newest version was shown at the 2012 Geneva auto show. When the latest Kuga arrives in SA in 2013, it will come fitted with a new generation 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol engine with a six-speed SelectShift automatic transmission and a 2.0-litre TDCi turbodiesel engine with PowerShift six-speed dual-clutch transmission.MODERN ENGINES, COOL FEATURESThe engines use Ford’s latest powertrain technology, including turbocharging and direct injection (for the EcoBoosts) and twin independent variable camshaft timing, and are more powerful as well as being more fuel efficient. Along with its more efficient engines, the latest Ford SUV’s sleeker body is almost 10% more aerodynamic than the Kuga it replaces, aided by an Active Grille Shutter that reduce wind resistance. The slats remain open when extra engine cooling is required and automatically shut when cruising at steady speeds to improve the Kuga’s aerodynamics.The Kuga will also introduce a “smart” all-wheel drive system that is said to act preemptively by reassessing road conditions and constantly adjust the power split to deliver the best blend of handling and traction.The new Kuga, along with its bold new design and more efficient engines, will also incorporate technologies such as the voice-activated SYNC connectivity system and Active Park Assist. Additional safety technologies include adaptive cruise control, blind spot information system, lane keeping aid and active city stop in operation at speeds under 30km/h.Another useful feature making its introduction on a Ford product in SA, is the “open sesame” automatic tailgate feature that requires a mere kicking motion beneath the rear bumper to unlock and raise the tailgate when the key fob is within range but the driver’s hands are occupied. The same process is used to close the hatch. Ford SA has also said full details of the range, including specification and prices, will be released at the vehicle’s launch in 2013.