GENEVA PREVIEW: New Lancia, updated Ford, to bow
The redesigned Lancia Delta will make its debut at the Geneva motor show next month while Ford will show a Focus coupe-cabriolet restyled in line with the rest of the recently revamped range.
The new Delta is the first totally new car in Lancia's second century. Designed by the Lancia Style Centre, it is 4.5 metres long, 1.8 metres wide and 1.5 metres high on a wheelbase of 2.7 metres. A sliding rear seat with reclining squab gives added flexibility.
Available equipment will include Bose Hi-Fi radio incorporating a CD player and MP3 file reader with steering-wheel mounted controls, the parent Fiat group's Blue&Me system developed with Microsoft, also available in a NAV version, and a new satellite navigation system developed with Magneti Marelli.
A range of turbo engines, both petrol and diesel, will deliver 120bhp to 200bhp with a choice of six-speed manual, robotised and automatic transmissions.
ESC and technical features claimed unique in this category, such as SDC suspension (with electronic damping control), will also be on offer.
Ford's updated Focus coupé-cabriolet, distinguished mainly by a remodelled nose, and with standard retractable hardtop will again be manufactured at the Bairo plant of Pininfarina.
"We also felt the importance of aligning this charismatic vehicle with our 'kinetic design' language as soon as possible," said Ford Europe sales and marketing chief Stephen Odell.
Most prominent amongst a number of detail interior changes is a new instrument cluster of a 'binocular' style with instruments illuminated in red.
Like other new Focus models, the coupé-cabriolet gains a flow-through centre stack to the standard 'premium' centre console with an increased stowage volume of approximately four litres and a sliding armrest with a travel of 80 mm, both contributing to increased comfort and convenience.
New standard driver assistance features have been introduced on all updated Focus models including a 'Ford Power' button for keyless start, plus keyless entry system, standard emergency hazard warning light activation system, optional tyre deflation detection system, new audio connectivity module for external devices and new levels of Bluetooth and USB connectivity, voice control and navigation systems.
New navigation systems include an "affordable" navigation option with 'SD' card slot as well as a DVD based system with 7" colour touch screen, and a DAB digital audio broadcast tuner is now offered with the Sony radio system.
Engine updates include additional refinement for the two-litre diesel; here in the UK 1.6- and two-litre petrol will also be offered, the latter with optional automatic gearbox.