The all-new Ford KA+ compact car delivers outstanding interior space, excellent fuel efficiency and fun-to-drive dynamics at an affordable price.
Joining Ford’s small-car line-up alongside the best-selling Fiesta, the KA+ provides an attractive new alternative for buyers who want a spacious, well-equipped and high-quality small car at a price point starting at £8,995.
Consumer demand for affordable small cars is increasing in Europe, with price, fuel efficiency and comfort among the leading factors in decision making. Sales of 410,000 small cars priced under €13,000 in 2015 accounted for 13 per cent of the small car segment – itself expected to account for 34 per cent of vehicles sales across the region by 2020.
The all-new Ford KA+ is a five-door hatchback based on Ford’s global small-car platform, and offers generous space for five people at an overall length of less than four metres.
The KA+ is slightly shorter than the Fiesta, but 29 millimetres taller. The interior features, seats, door panels and roof headliner are optimised to provide class-leading front headroom of 1,002mm, rear legroom of 896mm and rear hip room of 1335mm. The spacious interior delivers enough room for a two metre tall passenger to sit behind a two metre tall driver.
The KA+ provides outstanding every-day practicality with 270 litres of luggage space – enough to accommodate two large suitcases – plus 60/40 split-folding rear seats, and 21 stowage locations for small items throughout the cabin.
Stowage areas include MyFord Dock in the centre of the instrument panel that enables occupants to store, mount and charge mobile devices such as phones and navigation systems, and front door bins that can each hold a 1.0-litre bottle, a 0.6-litre bottle and a small umbrella. A hidden stowage bin within the end of the instrument panel is only accessible when the driver’s door is open, allowing valuables to be hidden out of sight. Driver and passengers can stow drinks easily with two cupholders for both the front and rear seat rows.
Taking inspiration from Ford’s latest design language, the stylish, well-proportioned exterior features the distinctive high-mounted trapezoidal grille with large, swept-back headlamps. All KA+ models offer a smart, integrated finish with chrome detailing for the front grille, together with body-coloured bumpers, door handles and door mirrors. A two-piece rear fascia with black insert adds character specifically for European models and also reduces replacement costs in the event of low-speed accident damage.
The interior features an attractive grained finish on the instrument panel and hard-wearing, contemporary trim materials in a stylish dark charcoal colour scheme. Distinctive chrome accents are applied in tactile and highly visible areas such as the door release handles, centre console control knobs and air vents.
The all-new KA+ features a simplified powertrain line-up based on an efficient new 1.2-litre Duratec petrol engine. Available with a choice of 70PS and 85PS power outputs, the 1.2-litre engine is derived from the same family as the 1.25-litre engine in the Fiesta, and features twin-independent variable camshaft timing technology to enhance performance, fuel efficiency and emissions.
Combined with a standard five-speed manual transmission, the 1.2-litre engine has been tuned to deliver smooth and responsive performance, with a broad spread of torque that makes the car easy and fun to drive in both city motoring and on longer journeys.
Fuel efficiency has been enhanced using optimised calibration, low-friction engine oil and regenerative charging, which saves fuel by maintaining efficient charge levels in the vehicle battery by capturing ‘free’ electrical energy when drivers coast or brake.
Low rolling resistance tyres and enhanced aerodynamic details, such as an optimised front lower spoiler lip and grille openings developed during more than 200 hours of wind tunnel testing, also contribute to improved efficiency. Both engine options achieve CO2 emissions of 114g/km, with combined fuel consumption of 56.5mpg.
The all-new KA+ has been developed to deliver agile, fun-to-drive dynamics that match customer expectations.
To deliver the desired dynamic performance, the KA+ features a unique chassis specification with specially developed features including springs and dampers, rear torsion beam axle, brake pads and tyres, and a re-engineered front sub-frame.
Unique tuning for the KA+ Electronic Power Assisted Steering system in Europe delivers a faster 2.6 turn lock-to-lock ratio and speed sensitive assistance, resulting in lighter steering at low speeds and more feedback at higher speeds to make city centres easier to negotiate and country road driving more rewarding.
Driving dynamics are further enhanced with a front anti-roll bar that is 47 per cent stiffer than for customers in Asia and South America. Ride height is reduced by 10mm for greater body control.
The vehicle also has undergone an intensive development programme to ensure improved comfort and refinement in typical European driving conditions, with a range of measures to minimise wind noise, road noise and powertrain noise levels including:
- Improved door seals
- Fiesta-specification hydraulic engine mounts tuned to absorb vibration and offer enhanced impact absorption
- Additional sound deadening material for the engine bay, A-pillars and doors
- New rear suspension bushes
- Aerodynamic fins for the door mirror mounts that prevent buffeting
Following final tuning and development carried out at Ford’s European proving ground in Lommel, Belgium, and during extensive test drives on European roads, the KA+ provides customers with an enjoyable and comfortable driving experience, with best-in-class noise levels of 73 decibels when driving on coarse surfaces at 50 mph.
The KA+ body structure has also been extensively developed to meet European safety standards, with more than 8,000 hours of computer-aided crash simulation undertaken alongside a comprehensive crash test programme to ensure impact performance and pedestrian protection.
To enhance crash performance, nearly 50 per cent of the KA+ body is constructed from high-strength steels, including the floor, front and rear chassis rails, window pillars, front bumper beam and passenger door beams.
Standard safety equipment includes six airbags, Electronic Stability Control with Hill Start Assist, and a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System that can advise drivers with a warning light when a tyre is significantly under-inflated.
Customers can select from two series options; Studio offered with the 70PS engine and Zetec which will be offered with both 70PS and 85PS.
All models deliver a comprehensive standard specification including; Chrome front grille, front fog lamps with day running lights, power front windows, electrically operated door mirrors with side indicators, perimeter alarm with remote central locking Speed Limiter and Ford Easy Fuel.
The highly specified Zetec series standard features include:
- 15in Alloy wheels
- Manual air-conditioning
- Ford’s SYNC voice-activated communications and entertainment system with AppLink that enables voice-activation of a range of smartphone apps and Emergency Assistance
- Leather wrapped steering wheel with remote audio controls
- Cruise Control
- Ford MyKey, which allows owners to set maximum speed and audio volume limits, and ensure safety features are not disabled. MyKey is ideal technology for parents who are allowing young and inexperienced drivers to use their car
The simplified option line up means KA+ Zetec customers can specify a range of attractive optional features including;
- Electronic Automatic Climate Control (EATC)
- Heated front seats with driver’s armrest
- Rear privacy glass
- Spare wheel kit
- City Pack – which includes rear parking sensors, power rear windows and heated power folding door mirrors
Exclusive and stylish KA+ Zetec Black and White special edition versions of the KA+ will also be available for customers to order later this year. The KA+ Zetec Black and White editions contrast either a black body colour with white roof and door-mirrors, or a white body with black roof and door-mirrors. Both versions feature black 15in alloy wheels and are offered exclusively with the 85PS 1.2-litre Duratec engine.
Publication of the official KA+ ABI insurance group ratings by Thatcham shows that the KA+ is the only five-door, five-seat B-car to achieve the lowest possible insurance group in the UK with a 1E rating for the KA+ Studio 70PS.
The official ratings for KA+ are confirmed as;
- KA+ Studio 70PS – 1E
- KA+ Zetec 70PS – 2E
- KA+ Zetec 85PS – 5E
Achieving the lowest insurance group rating means KA+ Studio customers can benefit from the lowest possible insurance premiums and overall cost of ownership.