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Ford planning ultra-low CO2 Focus

Date: 22 July 2008   |   Author: Rupert Saunders

Model changeover saw Ford Focus sales fall...

Ford is planning to launch a sub-100 g/km CO2 Focus within the next two years as a flagship for its Econetic programme.

The move follows this week's launch of the new Fiesta Econetic, with 98g/km and 76mpg, at the British motor show.

Tim Winstanley, head of diesel engine development for Ford, told BusinessCar: "100 grammes on a C-sector car is where the new Econetic programme will end up in two years' time. We should get 76mpg on a Focus in real-world driving, using conventional technologies."

The improvements are likely to come from longer gear ratios, further remapping of engine management and a gear-shift indicator that encourages drivers to change up early. All these are on the Fiesta Econetic.

Winstanley said Ford would continue to promote its TDCi diesel engines as the solution to reducing CO2 emissions "in the short to medium term", but admitted the company is also working on small capacity, turbocharged, petrol direct injection units under a programme called EcoBoost.

"I believe it will be diesel over the next five years," said Winstanley. "I don't really see any challenge to the diesel engine in that time frame. Small, turbo-petrol engines are getting closer but diesel engines are getting better as well."

Winstanley indicated the forthcoming Euro5 emissions targets were "not really a significant hurdle" but that there would be difficulties achieving proposed Euro6 NOx targets with diesel.