Even by Crossover Standards, the New Ford Puma is Hideous

The original Ford Puma was a fun, affordable, only-in-Europe coupe. A bit like a European Mitsubishi Eclipse. Now the Eclipse is back as a crossover, and everyone hates Mitsubishi for it, Ford have decided that they should do the same thing- slap the Puma name onto a crossover, this one to rival the Nissan Juke.

It is powered by Ford’s 1 liter EcoBoost engine, mated to a 48V mild-hybrid system. It’s available with either 125hp or 155hp. Its based on the same platform as the new Ford Fiesta, but the suspension has been stiffened to attempt to compensate for the increased weigh and centre of gravity. Ford claims it has best in class handling, but that’s not saying a lot, let’s be honest.

But what will make people buy the new Puma over rivals is the technology. Its available with adaptive cruise control with speed sign recognition, lane keep assist, power tailgate, and massaging seats. The top-of-the-line Titanium model comes with a leatherette steering wheel, and wood from the finest plastic trees.

In terms of practicality, the only interesting thing is what Ford calls the MegaBox. It’s a plastic box underneath the cargo area floor, which offers 80 liters of space. It has a drain plug at the bottom, so you can hose it down after putting dirty outdoors stuff in there. How many Puma buyers will actually ever need to hose it down is unknown.

But the question is if people will be able to get past the styling. President of Ford Europe says “We’ve gone to every length to give customers the flexibility they want, and the best-looking car they’ve ever owned.” But while this may suggest that they’re only targeting people who currently own a Subaru Tribeca, crossover buyers are known to be attracted to questionable styling.

No word in if it’ll be sold in the US. Hopefully not.