Fleet News

Ford Focus 1.8 TDCi Ghia - 10,767 miles



IT'S those little luxuries in life that make cold frosty winter mornings that much more bearable.

A warming cup of tea, Terry Wogan's middle-of-the-road musical offerings, thick socks and – as I recently found out – Ford's Quickclear heated windscreen. It is brilliant.

It saves a good five or 10 minutes in the morning, valuable time when your journey into work is going to be a slow one anyway. And it's standard on our long-term Ford Focus 1.8 TDCi Ghia.

On the subject of slow journeys, will at least one reader please make a note to remind me to spend next January locked away indoors.

For several hours last year I sat on the M11/A14 as the country's transport system ground to a halt in treacherous weather. A few evenings ago I was in much the same situation – it took six hours to travel from Gaydon in Warwickshire to Peterborough, a journey of just over 70 miles.

Three Fleet News staffers occupied the Ford Focus and as we made slow progress, impromptu games of I-spy were played and several CDs given an airing.

Although six hours spent in any lower-medium sector car is unlikely to be without its niggles, the Focus proved comfortable enough and back twinge moans were few and far between.

It also gave the fuel consumption a bit of a battering as the engine was left on to keep us warm.

Should the journey have taken even longer, another game we could have played is one I share with my four-year-old daughter. As we test different cars she likes to point out the same models she sees out of the window. It proved a tad uneventful in a Renault Vel Satis but the Focus provides plenty of opportunity for her excited shouts of 'there's one, Dad'.

That's not surprising as the Focus is Britain's best-selling car and sales last month alone totalled 12,630 units.

The Focus is an enjoyable car to drive, its high seating position commands a decent view of the road ahead, its durable interior is showing no signs of wear and tear despite several months with us and it is plenty roomy enough. It's simply a great fleet car and we look forward to the all-new model next year. Mike Roberts

Company car tax bill 2004/05 (22% tax-payer): £56 per month

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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