The new Ford Puma ST hot SUV has been revealed with ordering open now and deliveries expected before the end of 2020.
Prices start from £28,495.
Derived from the acclaimed Fiesta ST, the Puma ST shares its 200hp 1.5-litre Ecoboost turbo engine, for 0-62mph in just 6.7 seconds (which can be aided by optional launch control).
Yet standard cylinder deactivation technology will also deliver 40.9mpg and CO2 emissions from 155g/km.
While it still has a sports exhaust system, Ford says the Puma ST is 1dB quieter than the Fiesta ST, with family-friendly refinement in mind.
“Real driving enthusiasts aren’t going to settle for less excitement just because life demands a more ‘sensible’ car,” said Ford Performance manager Stefan Muenzinger.
“Our number one priority was that the Puma ST had to be as exhilarating and capable as every ST model, without sacrificing any of Puma’s practicality.
“We believe that we have the best-handling small SUV in its segment. It is a joy to drive.”
Puma ST: sporty SUV
Ford has extensively overhauled the already-impressive chassis of the regular Puma.
19-inch wheels are fitted with specially-developed Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres, brakes are 17 percent larger and the steering is 25 percent faster.
There are anti-roll bars front and rear, and the rear suspension has been stiffened 50 percent over the regular Puma – and 40 percent over the Fiesta ST, to offset the Puma’s taller body.
Patented springs and Hitachi twin-tube frequency-reactive dampers are another highlight.
Ford is even offering an optional Performance Pack, for £950. This includes a limited-slip differential (the Puma ST is the first SUV of this size to feature such a performance-focused gadget) and launch control.
A full styling makeover includes a Ford Performance front splitter that improves front end downforce by 80 percent. There is a bigger rear roof spoiler and a diffuser in the rear bumper.
Special ST upper and lower grilles are distinctive and deliver extra engine cooling.
It is offered in six colours: Agate Black, Desert Island Blue, Fantastic Red, Frozen White, Magnetic and this ST-exclusive Mean Green.
All colours are offset with standard gloss black roof, grille surrounds, door mirrors, side spears and rear roof spoiler.
Bolstered Recaro seats are also standard, trimmed in Miko Dinamica upholstery that stops occupants sliding around in corners.
Ford hasn’t compromised practicality though. The boot remains best-in-class at 456 litres and the clever 80-litre MegaBox remains beneath the boot floor.
Other standard equipment includes 8.0-inch infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, premium B&O sound system, all-round parking sensors, Quickclear heated windscreen and wireless smartphone charging.
Ordering for the new Puma ST is open now, with deliveries expected before the end of the year.