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New sub-compact Ford Puma may end up replacing EcoSport

Ford says Puma slots between EcoSport and Escape, but closer to EcoSport

Published: April 7, 2019, 10:30 PM
Updated: April 14, 2019, 5:40 AM

2020Ford Puma teaser

Ford has teased its upcoming sub-compact crossover, Puma, at a Ford Europe event in the Netherlands, readying it for a reported year-end introduction.

Ford Puma emblem

The company decided to resurrect the Puma name (previously used on a German-made compact coupe/hatchback around the turn of the millennium) and that provided the chance to also resurrect and update the original Cougar emblem.

It’s not yet known if Puma will make it to North America, but it likely will in time. The company says it slots into the lineup between the EcoSport and Kuga (Escape), albeit closer to the EcoSport, since they both share a platform with the Fiesta sub-compact.

2018 Ford EcoSport

As a matter of fact, it wouldn’t surprise us in the least if Puma is the replacement for EcoSport (seeing as the two are produced at Ford’s Craiova Assembly Plant in Romania), which is now in the sixth year of its current generation, which further leads us to speculate it will come to North America.

“Innovatively engineered and seductively styled, we think Puma is going to really resonate with customers. If you want a car that can turn heads on Friday night, and swallow your flat-pack furniture with ease on Saturday afternoon, then you’ve found it,” said Ford of Europe president Stuart Rowley. “We've gone to every length to give customers the flexibility they want, with progressive and evocative styling, so that they can drive the best-looking car they've ever owned.”

1999 Ford Puma

The teaser event briefly showed the new Puma shrouded in laser light, but proved sufficient to see the modern styling of the new vehicle, including fender-mounted headlights and athletic lines. The new crossover uses a mild-hybrid powertrain (net 153 hp) with the 1.0-litre EcoBoost 3-cylinder.

Ford says one of the Puma’s selling features is the flexible 456-litre cargo space.

More information on Puma is expected over the summer of 2019.