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Ford Focus Active Photo: Supplied
Andrew Maclean | Jul, 23 2018 | 1 Comment

Ford is set to make its Focus crossover into new territory.

While not yet official, the blue oval's local division is understood to be finalising plans to add the new high-riding Focus Active to Australian showrooms in 2019.

The Active is similar in concept to the popular Subaru XV, which is basically a jacked-up version of the Impreza hatchback with extra ground clearance and tougher plastic cadding to give it a more rugged appearance.

The Focus Active is offered in both hatchback and wagon body styles in Europe, featuring suspension that is 30mm higher than regular models as well as a unique front bumper design and plastic wheel arches.

Speaking to Drive at the international launch of the fourth-generation hatch and wagon, which will arrive in Australia from November, Ford Australia spokesman Damion Smy said: "It's something we have been looking at and beleive could be very attractive to Australian customers.

"It's an exciting new trim level that Ford of Europe has rolled out with Fiesta and Focus, and it's the kind of product that will open up Focus to a new and broader audience."

Ford Australia has registered the Focus Active badge as a trademark, even though Hyundai uses Active on numerous models like the Santa Fe and Tucson as a trim grade.

Smy said that is not an official admission of its inevitability in coming to Australia, although Drive understands it is confirmed and set to arrive in early 2019.

"It's part of protecting the name, as we do for other derivatives that offered exclusively in Europe but not in Australia," Smy said.

"However, if we want to take advantage of being a global company we will ensure that we can introduce those models if we see that Australian customers would be interested in them at any point in the future."

It is uncertain yet whether Ford Australia will offer the Active in both hatch and wagon body styles.

In any case, it will come powered by a new-generation 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbo petrol engine that drives the front wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. It is expected to command a small premium over standard Focus variants.

The Focus Active will bolster Ford's local SUV line-up, which already includes the baby Ecosport, mid-sized Escape and the ute-based Everest with the seven-seat Endura set to arrive around November.



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