Ford Australia has sharpened the value equation for its entry-level midsize SUV, the Kuga Ambiente, which from this week arrives in showrooms with an upgraded infotainment system - the same high-featured SYNC 2 system that’s offered in the higher-spec Trend and Titanium.
While the Kuga Trend and Kuga Titanium received Ford’s SYNC 2 infotainment suite - which is the primary interface for the car’s satellite navigation, Bluetooth telephony, AM/FM/DAB+/CD/USB audio and climate control, and also include voice controls - as part of a range update in late 2015, the Kuga Ambiente instead was stuck with a smaller screen and the more primitive “SYNC 1” system.
But now Ambiente buyers can enjoy the same SYNC 2 hardware as Trend and Titanium owners, with the dramatically bigger screen (8.0 inches across) a significant improvement on the old 4-inch display.
Dual-zone climate control with rear air vents also get added to the Kuga Ambiente’s spec sheet, improving cabin comfort.
The Kuga Ambiente will continue to be offered solely with a 1.5 litre EcoBoost turbo petrol four driving either the front wheels via a six-speed manual or six-speed auto, or all four wheels through a six-speed automatic.
The1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol makes 110 kW/240 Nm in FWD form while the AWD produces 134kW/240Nm. A 2.0-litre turbo petrol engine is available for the Kuga Trend and Titanium, and sends 178kW/345Nm to all four wheels.
Kuga Trend and Titanium models can also be optioned with a 2.0 litre turbo-diesel engine producing 132kW/400Nm.
Pricing across the range is unchanged for now, making the Kuga Ambiente a better-value buy than before. However, SUV shoppers should note that prices for Ambiente models is set to rise from July 1 this year.
Current pricing is listed below:
- Ambiente FWD MT $27,990
- Ambiente FWD AT $29,490
- Ambiente AWD AT $31,990
- Trend EcoBoost $36,890
- Trend Diesel $38,890
- Titanium EcoBoost $45,190
- Titanium Diesel $47,190
From July 1 2016:
- Ambiente FWD MT $29,250
- Ambiente FWD AT $30,750
- Ambiente AWD AT $33,250