The 2018 Ford Focus was spotted last February going out for a drive in wintery weather. This model hasn’t had a good revamping since 2015 and that was what we were expecting to happen for the 2018 model year. However, the prototype that was caught on the spy shots looked very similar to the 2015 Focus. This sparked our interest and we are wondering if Ford made the prototype like this on purpose.
Seeing as the current design is already rolling for six years, we kind of expected the 2018 Focus to get a spectacular revamp. An explanation could be that Ford made the prototype a decoy. As a result, the surprise element at the unveiling will be even bigger when Ford actually is going to bring us a completely revised design. So, we are much more curious for the unveiling of the 2018 Ford Focus. This will probably take place in the beginning of 2017, we expect it to be at the Detroit Auto Show.
Until then, you may have to make do with the current Focus, or the surprisingly redesigned and all-round bestseller 2016 Honda Civic hatchback.
All that’s available right now are the February spy shots, which are what will be discussed here.
On the spy shots the similarities with the 2015 Focus are quite visible. In 2015 the Focus had a few nips and tucks on the existing design and it’s clear that the prototype sports these too. The grille is the exact same shape, although it doesn’t feature the chrome bars. The mist lamps are missing completely from the fascia, but the outlines are still visible. The side and back of the car are also exactly the same as the 2015 Focus.
Then there are some clues that the 2018 Ford Focus is actually going to be a completely different car. The prototype is a lot longer and wider than the 2015 Focus, which points to a new platform. A longer and wider one to be precise. This is visible in the odd seam on the hood of the prototype. The same body has been used, but doesn’t fit on the new Focus platform, so some parts had to be welded together with extra steel in between.
The rear fascia also sports this funny seam and the wheels popped out of the wheel arches a little bit. Also, the rear wheels have been pushed to the back of the wheel arch because of the longer platform.
Finally, we expect some of the revamped features from the exterior design o the 2017 Ford Fusion sedan to make it on the 2018 Focus too. Think of the sharper grille and headlights, and a sporty lower air dam.
We can be brief about the interior design: we have no idea what it will look like. The interior features that are visible on the spyshots betray nothing. It even looks like the interior hasn’t even been put in, it looks so empty in the pictures. There are of course some basic features we can expect, based on the last Ford Focus, today’s technology and Ford’s probable aspiration to completely revise the Ford Focus 2018.
For starters, the standard infotainment screen is going to be larger. Also, the centre console will be redesigned, as will the instrument cluster. The start/stop button from the 2015 Focus will return. One or two extra USB-ports will be added to the present one.
Of course, some leather options are going to be available too. We expect a grey and black hue, like the 2015 Focus has, but also an additional dark brown tint. We also expect the Sony audio system to return.
There are some pictures of the prototype where the hood of the car is up. This allowed for a sneak peek at the engine that the prototype was driving with. At some points that engine differed from any of the 2015 Ford Focus engines. For example, the oil cap was in another place and the engine cover has a different shape. This may mean that this prototype was especially built to test out the new engine. There’s also the possibility that this engine is currently being used in another vehicle and Ford put it in as again, a decoy. This option actually seems highly unlikely, so we’re going to stick with the option of a new engine.
The current Ford Focus engines in the US are these. For starters, the 1.0 liter three cylinder that can make 123 horsepower and the 2.0 liter four-cylinder that can make 160 horsepower. There’s also the 2.0 liter EcoBoost four cylinder that makes 252 horsepower and is available in the Focus ST. Next up is the 2.3 liter four cylinder in the Focus RS that makes 350 horse power. All the engines come with an automatic transmission.
A possible option is that Ford will use one or more engines found in another car, for example the 160hp engine in the latest 2018 Ford EcoSport subcompact crossover.
In Europe, there are slightly different engines. To begin with the 1.5 liter EcoBoost that makes 150 horsepower and comes with either a six speed automatic or manual transmission. Also available is a 2.0 liter diesel engine that makes 150 HP and comes with a six speed manual or the PowerShift automatic transmission. Then lastly, there is the 1.5 liter TDCi, which was new in 2015. It can make 120 horsepower. This engine is also available as a six speed manual and Powershift automatic transmission.
Tech specs on the 2018 Ford Focus are not made public either. We expect to hear more about those at the unveiling and in the press release. Of course you can expect all the features that the current Focus sports to be available on the 2018 Focus too. Probably some of the optional features will be standard on the new Focus.
A couple of options you can expect either as option or standard on the 2018 Ford Focus are: Cross Traffic Alert and Blind Spot Information System. The latter uses the side mirrors to signal when traffic is in the blind spot and thus makes changing lanes safer. Furthermore, there’s Lane Keeping Assist, Drowsiness Alert, Automatic High Beam and Traffic Sign Recognition. Distance Indication and Distance Alert warn you when you drive too close to the car in front of you. Software and tech functions can be operated through Voice Control and Active Park Assist is also an option. All in all, the safety options on the 2018 Ford Focus are going to make for semi-autonomous driving.
Price, reveal and sale date
As stated before, the 2018 Ford Focus will be revealed in 2017. We expect it to be at the Detroit Auto Show in January. There we expect to get some more clues on the exterior, interior, engine and price specs. Given the history of pricing of the Ford Focus we are sure that the new Ford Focus standard model is going to be a bit more expensive. A new chassis and engine come at a cost. A starting price of $18,000 is the least we expect.