Since Ford decided to implement its ‘One Ford’ global strategy a number of years back, every motor car that Ford builds – with the exception of the F-150 pickup truck – would be exactly the same, whether it was sold in the Americas, Europe or Asia.
Usually, car manufacturers build specific cars for specific worldwide markets and the previous Ford Kuga was no exception. It had the build quality and driving dynamics we Europeans expect from a car, and so on that basis, it was a success here, but everywhere else, less so.
As this global strategy has been applied to the new Kuga, we’ve checked out its new dimensions and compared it with its rivals to help you decide whether the Kuga is the right car for you.
The new Kuga is a larger machine to the one it replaces. In the US, Ford needed a replacement for its bigger utilitarian SUV called the Escape and so with the ‘One Ford’ strategy, it’s brought that car over to the UK and renamed it the Kuga.
This Kuga is actually slightly narrower and less tall than the previous model but it’s 81mm longer. It’s worth noting the Kuga has the same length wheelbase as the previous model. This means the new Kuga is more practical than its predecessor as well as being able to fit between tighter gaps.
|Length||4,524mm (4,549mm on Titanium X Sport trim)|
|Width (without mirrors)||1,838mm (1,856mm on Titanium X Sport trim)|
|Height (without roof rails)||1,689mm (1,691mm on four-wheel-drive versions)|
Thanks to some clever packaging and the car being 81mm longer, it’s more spacious on the inside. Rear legroom is beaten marginally by the likes of the Kia Sorento and Honda CR-V, but the Kuga beats the latter for rear headroom.
The Ford Kuga is only equipped with five seats. No seven-seater option is available. Even so, with the split 60:40 rear seats in place, the car can hold up to 442-litres and 1,928-litres with them folded down. With a spare wheel fitted, however, the luggage space becomes 406-litres and 1,603-litres respectively. This means – with the rear seats up – the Mazda CX-5 holds almost 100-litres more but the Kuga, at least, trumps its predecessor’s figures of 360-litres and 1,355-litres.
This is how other competitors fair: Honda CR-V (589-litres and 1,648-litres), Nissan Qashqai (430-litres and 1,585-litres), Skoda Yeti (416-litres and 1,720-litres), Hyundai Santa Fe in five-seater form (585-litres and 1,680-litres), Kia Sportage (564-litres and 1,353-litres), Volkswagen Tiguan (470-litres and 1,510-litres) and the Nissan X-Trail in five-seater form (550-litres and 1,982-litres). This puts the Kuga towards the smaller end of the scale.
|Seats up (with spare wheel)||442 litres (406 litres)|
|Seats folded (with spare wheel)||1,928 litres (1,603 litres)|
Fuel tank capacity
You get a 60-litre fuel tank whether you specify a petrol or diesel engine. With the 148hp 1.6-litre petrol EcoBoost turbocharged engine with two-wheel drive, you get a theoretical range of 602 miles. The more powerful 178hp version of the same engine achieves a theoretical range of 504 miles.
The 2.0-litre diesel engines are much more economical. The 138hp version coupled with a manual gearbox and two-wheel drive has a theoretical range of 793 miles. With four-wheel drive, this figure drops to 717 miles and with the PowerShift dual-clutch automatic plus four-wheel drive, it drops further still to 690 miles. The more powerful 161hp version of the same engine achieves exactly the same figures.
The Kuga has a great turning circle for an SUV – measuring at 11.1 metres. To put this in perspective, the smaller Focus hatchback has a turning circle only 0.1 metres shorter.
Compared with some of its rivals in the SUV segment, the Kuga beats the Volkswagen Tiguan by approximately one metre and it also beats the much more expensive and luxurious Land Rover Discovery Sport by half a metre.
If towing vehicles is a necessity when you’ve bought a new car, the Kuga can definitely step up to the challenge. To do this, an optional detachable tow bar must be specified for £625.
The 148hp 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol engine with the manual gearbox can tow up to 2,000kg. The more powerful 178hp unit can only tow a maximum of 1,850kg due to the conventional automatic gearbox fitted as standard.
The only two-wheel drive diesel available – with 138hp and a manual gearbox – can tow a maximum of 1,900kg whilst all the 4×4 diesel versions can tow a maximum of 2,100kg.
The lightest version is the 148hp 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol engined car with two-wheel drive and a six-speed manual gearbox, this weighs 1,579kg. The heaviest version is with a 2.0-litre diesel engine with the dual-clutch automatic and four-wheel drive which weighs in at 1,716kg.
This means, in the Kuga’s lightest form, it’s 78kg heavier than the Mazda CX-5, 119kg more than a Honda CR-V, 59kg more than the Toyota RAV4, 54kg heavier than a Volkswagen Tiguan and over a quarter of a ton heavier than a Nissan Qashqai. However, it is at least 312kg lighter than the bigger Kia Sorento and Hyundai Santa Fe.
Can you af-Ford to miss the Kuga?
If you can’t, check out our full review of the Ford Kuga and our guide to the paint finishes on offer. Then head over to our car configurator to see how much you could save on your next car, then head over to our car deals page to see our latest discounts.