Five reasons why you should consider an estate car (sponsored)
The current crop of estate cars, such as the New Ford Focus Estate, are more than a match for the latest SUVs. We explain why.
If you take a look in any street or car park, you can’t fail to notice that SUVs are booming in popularity. With their high seating position and tall, imposing looks, it’s easy to see the appeal of these models.
But SUVs aren’t the only types of cars on the market for those seeking smart styling and effortless practicality. The estate is still a fantastic choice, and one that can match – or even beat – an equivalent SUV when it comes to real-world ability.
So read on to discover the five reasons why the estate car is here to stay.
With flowing lines and a long roofline, the estate is undeniably pleasing on the eye. Cars like the New Ford Focus Estate are at least as handsome as their hatchback counterparts. Estate cars have no need to dress up with big bumpers to hint at the rugged appeal of an SUV; they are simply-styled and all the better for it.
The All-New Ford Focus Estate is the perfect embodiment of this. Blending a sophisticated and premium look with superb interior space means it represents the best of both worlds. The sculptural, athletic lines hint at the Focus’ sporting character and deliver genuine aerodynamic elegance.
Roof bars, fitted as standard to every version of the New Ford Focus Estate, are a traditional but useful feature, allowing owners to easily increase their car’s carrying capacity by installing a roof box, for example. Thanks to the squat stance of most estates, it’s possible to carry a roof box without bothering car park height restrictions as you might with a similarly-equipped SUV.
It’s not just the large boot that appeals to estate-car owners, it’s the shape and low loading lip that make loading large objects as easy as possible. Without the need for a tall stance and raised ride height, you won’t have to lift luggage high to load it, plus the flat floor and that low loading lip make it an ideal seat for changing muddy boots after a family day out.
By dropping the rear seats and removing the luggage cover, you might even have enough space to sleep at a music festival. The numbers lay this practicality bare: the New Ford Focus Estate offers a huge 608 litres of space with the rear seats in place; fold them and this increases to a gargantuan 1,620 litres. Those numbers are significantly more than many SUVs of a similar size can muster.
What’s more, the All-New Ford Focus Estate boasts rear seats that fold almost flat and a pull-out luggage cover to keep your valuables out of sight. If you need more space, you can remove it completely and store it conveniently under the boot floor - where you’ll find additional storage for other luggage.
Whether you’re taking a drive to the garden centre, or preparing for a mountain bike trek, the estate car can do it all.
(S)miles per gallon
In a world of spiralling petrol prices, buyers want to see the petrol pump less and less. And choosing an estate car over an SUV could help. That’s got a lot to do with aerodynamics. In simple terms, this means the sleeker the car, the more easily it can slip through the air – saving you fuel in the process.
The New Ford Focus Estate has a drag coefficient of just 0.28 – compared with 0.34 for the Ford Kuga. That might not sound like much, but at a time when every drop of fuel counts, it all adds up.
In fact, the most efficient versions of the New Ford Focus Estate are capable of an impressive 78.5mpg on the combined cycle – a significant increase on the already frugal 54.3mpg the best Ford Kuga SUV serves up.
It’s not just a slippery shape that allows these impressive figures. Every petrol EcoBoost and diesel EcoBlue engine in the New Ford Focus Estate range features particulate filters to reduce emissions, and Auto Start-Stop technology which automatically switches off the engine when you come to a stop.
The 1.0 and 1.5-litre EcoBoost engines can even deactivate one of their cylinders when coasting or cruising to reduce running costs and emissions further.
Highs and lows
Many SUV sales brochures boast of high driving positions, for a commanding view of the road ahead. But for many motorists, this isn’t necessarily a good thing.
Some drivers – and their passengers – may struggle to climb up into an SUV, while other more enthusiastic drivers will miss the lower seating position for a sportier drive. And it’s that driving experience that’s a real highlight of the New Ford Focus Estate. With responsive steering and an eager chassis, it is among the most enjoyable cars to drive in its class, plus ST-Line and ST-Line X models have sports tuned suspension for an even more engaging drive.
Equipment like Adaptive Cruise Control with Lane Centring and Stop & Go, and Intelligent Speed Assist* make the experience feel even more special, comfortable and, most importantly, safe.
And there’s more. Because you sit high in an SUV, they can sometimes feel bigger than they really are – and that can prove intimidating. Estates feel more like ‘normal’ cars to drive – and because they usually have a bluff rear end, they’re easy to park, too.
Impressively, Active Park Assist 2* allows the car to park itself and even exit parking spaces, without the driver having to select the gear, steer or use the pedals.
Don’t follow the crowd
A few years ago, an SUV was the radical choice. Few people bought them, and they were a relatively rare sight as a result. Fast forward to 2018, and ubiquity has dulled their visual impact.
The growth of the SUV market now means an estate is a bold choice. It’s the kind of choice that’ll spark conversations. And unlike boxy ‘load-luggers’ of old, you won’t find yourself needing to justify your purchase by choosing something as stylish, practical, fun, comfortable and well equipped as the New Ford Focus.
For more information visit ford.co.uk
*Not all features available on all models. Active Park Assist 2 only available with automatic transmission.