Ford Kuga Plug-In Hybrid review
The latest Ford Kuga is available with a choice of powertrains – including a plug-in hybrid engine for the first time
- Easy-to-use hybrid system
- Decent electric range
- Spacious interior
- Not that fast
- Dull dashboard design
- Gearbox not very slick
|Car type||Electric range||Fuel economy||CO2 emissions|
|Plug-in hybrid||35 miles||202mpg||32g/km|
The Ford Kuga was once famed for its hatchback-like handling – the original was little more than a Focus on stilts, after all. Things went a bit fat and flabby for a while, but now the evergreen SUV has been reborn: the third-generation family car is on sale now in a variety of distinct and different flavours.
A conventional hybrid model arrives later in 2020, but for now, buyers looking to slash their tax bills and running costs will be particularly attracted to this plug-in hybrid (PHEV) version. Powered by a comparatively large 2.5-litre petrol engine and an electric motor fed by a 14.4kWh battery, the Kuga Plug-In Hybrid promises rock-bottom running costs and the ability to waft along for 35 miles on electric power alone.
Key rivals include longstanding contenders the Kia Niro PHEV and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, as well as the Vauxhall Grandland X Hybrid and its French sister models the Citroen C5 Hybrid and Peugeot 3008 Hybrid. The forthcoming Suzuki Across and Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrids will also have the Kuga in their sights when they arrive in late 2020.
By injecting some of the original Kuga’s dynamic appeal, this latest model stands a good chance of reclaiming its crown as one of the sharpest-to-drive SUVs on sale, too. While that’s unlikely to be the driving force behind many decisions to buy one of these plug-in models, it’s nice to know that when the mood dictates, the Kuga is more than up to the task in hand.
It mixes driver fun with impressive practicality, alongside a simple-to-use and effective hybrid system – making for a solid attempt at a cheap-to-run, one-size-fits-all family car. On this evidence, it looks like Ford could soon be back at its best.
For a more detailed look at the Ford Kuga Plug-In Hybrid, read on for the rest of our in-depth review.
In This Review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe latest Ford Kuga is available with a choice of powertrains – including a plug-in hybrid engine for the first time
- 2Range, MPG, CO2 & chargingThe Ford Kuga Plug-In Hybrid has a decent electric range, but there’s no fast charging, so you need to trickle-charge overnight
- 3Running costsThe latest Ford Kuga will be offered with a competitive warranty and a variety of servicing plans, which should help keep a lid on running costs
- 4Engines, drive & performanceThe latest Ford Kuga has gone back to the model's roots, taking its place as one of the best-handling SUVs you can buy
- 5Interior & comfortThe Ford Kuga’s interior isn’t the most inspiring place to sit, but at least it’s functional and easy to navigate
- 6Practicality & boot spaceFord claims best-in-class rear legroom for the Kuga and it’s hard to argue, as there's loads of space for adults in the back
- 7Reliability & safetyThis generation of Ford Kuga was awarded the full five stars by Euro NCAP, making it one of the safest cars on sale