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This is the article about the European and worldwide Ford Focus. For the Focus sold in North America, see Ford Focus (North America).

The Ford Focus is a small family car made by Ford and sold in most Ford markets worldwide. It was launched in 1998 in Europe and 2002 in Australia. Since then, it has become the United Kingdom's best selling car, following in the success of its predecessor, the Escort. In 2001 and 2002, the Focus was the world’s best selling car.[citation needed] A new version of the Focus (Mk 2) was launched in Europe in January 2005 and a face lifted version in January 2008.

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The Focus comes available with either a SPI 2.0L 4 cylinder 110 hp engine or a Zetec 2.0L 4 cylinder 130 hp engine. Both come mated with a 5 speed manual or 4 speed automatic transmission.

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In Europe, South America, North America and South Africa, the Focus replaced the Ford Escort. In Australia, New Zealand and Japan, it replaced the Ford Laser.

Design and engineering

Codenamed CW170 during its development, and briefly known to some Ford contractors as the Ford Fusion[citation needed] , the original Focus took its eventual name from a Ghia concept car which was shown at the Geneva Motor Show in 1991. Certain elements of the design had been seen even earlier in prototypes used by Ford to demonstrate forthcoming safety features, such as the eye-level rear lighting clusters. Initial spy photographs of the car seen in 1995 showed a continuation of Ford's New Edge styling philosophy, first seen in the Ford Ka in 1996, and Ford Cougar in 1998.

The decision to call the new car the Ford Focus was made in early 1998, as Ford's overheads had been planning to keep the Escort nameplate for its new generation of small family cars.

The interior of the car was also radically styled featuring many curves and sweeping lines. Although the design was clearly influenced by the Ka the interior design was more akin to those of American cars, in the same way the original Ford Mondeo was.[neutrality disputed]

The Focus also introduced high specification components. The car featured a highly sophisticated fully independent multi-link rear suspension (dubbed "Control Blade") which was derived from the system used on the Ford Mondeo estate and was intended to give the car class-leading handling and ride. Although fully independent multi-link rear suspension is costly, Ford managed to design and produce the suspension in an ingenious and cost effective way by using pressed metal techniques. Until then a high proportion of other cars in the class had used Twist-beam rear suspensions, or other beam type suspensions.

Manufacturing

The Mark 1 Focus was produced in factories in: Saarlouis, Germany; Valencia, Spain; Santa Rosa, Philippines; Pacheco, Argentina; Chungli, Taiwan; Chongqing, China and Vsevolozhsk, Russia.



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