This time it’s the Kuga’s diesel engine that has come in for significant upgrades, boosting power and reducing fuel consumption.
For 2015, Ford has updated the 2.0 litre Duratorq diesel to deliver 132kW and 400Nm, marking a 12kW increase in power and a handy 60Nm boost in torque.
Fuel consumption is also improved for the new model year, dropping from 6.3 l/100km to 5.7 l/100km.
As it was in the 2014 line-up, the Duratorq diesel will again be offered exclusively in mid-spec Trend and top-shelf Titanium form.
As revealed last week, both can also be had with the new 176kW/340Nm 2.0 litre Ecoboost petrol engine.
The diesel upgrade will be a welcome one for buyers shopping at the middle and top end of the range, but the entry-level Ambiente trim will again be limited to 1.6 litre petrol engines.
Pricing and full details for the 2015 range is still be confirmed, but in the 2014 line-up, there is an $11,250 gap between the $27,990 Ambiente and the most affordable diesel option, the $39,240 Trend.
It is unclear at this stage if Ford will eventually introduce a more affordable diesel option, although even now it is joined by the likes of Mazda ($39,470 CX-5 Maxx diesel), Toyota ($35,690 RAV4 GX), and Subaru ($35,490 Forester 2.0D), among others, in restricting its diesel options to mid- and top-spec trim grades.
Speaking with TMR today, Ford Australia's Neil McDonald said that buyer feedback at the dealer shows that there is less interest in a diesel option at the entry end, while the addition of an automatic option for the front-wheel-drive petrol Ambiente has been in great demand.
"We expect that with the availability of the automatic on the FWD Ambiente, it will appeal to a broader audience," Mr McDonald said.
The Kuga’s feature set and mechanical package is expected to remain otherwise unchanged for 2015, although Ford has yet to confirm final details.
Watch for more on the updated Kuga, including pricing, to surface in the lead-up to its January 2015 launch.
In its current form, the Kuga is priced as listed below.
2013/14 Ford Kuga Pricing (excludes on-road costs)
- 2014 Kuga Ambiente FWD 1.6 petrol manual - $27,990
- 2014 Kuga Ambiente AWD 1.6 petrol automatic - $31,490
- 2014 Kuga Trend AWD 1.6 petrol automatic - $36,240
- 2014 Kuga Trend AWD 2.0 diesel automatic - $39,240
- 2014 Kuga Titanium AWD 1.6 petrol automatic - $44,740
- 2014 Kuga Titanium AWD 2.0 diesel automatic - $47,740
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