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Ford Focus review – design

Facelift has brought a more grown-up look that follows another new aesthetic direction for Ford

Evo rating
  • Gets the fundamentals right; handles well; impressive new interfaces
  • It’s maybe a bit austere, despite it now being quite expensive

As part of its mid-life update the Focus has picked up some limited, but not unnoticed, changes that usefully sharpen up the exterior design. The slimmer headlights are now LED across the range, with new Matrix units available on the options list. The grille features Ford’s eight-sided design that’s quickly spreading across its Euro-centric range, with the blue oval now placed back within its confines, rather than its previous position above.

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The rest of the range updates are far more subtle with new rear lights and some fresh colour and wheels. These all sit on top of a relatively understated design that fundamentally changed in this current generation, swapping the Mk3’s mono-box volume for a more Golf-like two-box shape, pulling the base of the windscreen back and pushing the C-pillars into a more upright position.

There’s lots of curves across the body side, and while you will make up your own mind about whether you like the overall look, it is quite angle-sensitive, looking broad-shouldered and squat from some angles, and gawky from others.

ST-Line cars share their design with the Focus ST, although a new exhaust system and bigger wheels still make the full-fat ST distinct from lesser models. Active models feature their own look with the addition of black plastic cladding and a different front bumper design.

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