Ford Focus 1.0-litre Ecoboost Zetec

 

Price: £17,945

Power output: 123bhp @ 6000rpm

Torque: 125lb ft @ 1500-4500 rpm

Top speed: 120mph

0-62 mph: 11.3sec

Economy (mpg): 56.5

CO2 emissions (g/km): 114

Rattling around the bending Essex lanes beyond the Ford plant at Dunton it's hard to hear what the new 1.0-litre engine sounds like.

It's nearly silent and pulling up to lights on several occasions I'm convinced I've stalled it. But that's about the only noticeable difference from the normal 1.6-litre Focus engine. The rest of the time it drives like a normal Focus (very well indeed) and has plenty of power to manage overtaking and strong acceleration without much effort.

It's very refined too and doesn't have the pops and whizzes of some tiny petrol engines. The only time I really noticed its lack of engine size was when lifting off the throttle down in gear, only to discover there is very little in the way of engine braking to slow you down without using the brake (and wasting fuel economy). On paper it should do 54.5mpg but, as always, claiming a manufacturer official economy figure is tricky. That said, I came pretty close, making the 1.0-litre a liveable alternative to a diesel and a cheaper one.

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