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Ford Drops Top on European Focus C-C

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Khatir Soltani
Slinky New Ford Focus Coupe-Convertible Not for North America

Rub your eyes, pinch your arms, but most importantly, believe what
Ford Focus Coupe-Convertible: Built for life in the South of France. (Photo: Ford Motor Company of Canada)
you're seeing: there is indeed a blue oval on the grille of this rather attractive convertible. While Ford of North America is busy launching the new Edge crossover and the latest generation of Tyrannosaurus Rex-sized SUVs (Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator), Europe is getting something smaller, cooler, and better at maximizing your exposure to the summer sky. This is the latest version of the European-model Focus, called the Coupe-Cabriolet, and it is the world's first Focus Coupe and the world's first Focus Convertible, all at the same time.

The
No fancy folding roof or elegant interior for this car, our North American market Focus. (Photo: Ford Motor Company of Canada)
Focus Coupe-Convertible is just one of the many new folding hardtop cars that have entered the market in recent times. In Europe, it'll go toe-to-toe with Volkswagen's new EOS, and two of France's finest, the Peugeot 307 and the Renault M├ęgane C+C. For a North American comparison, it's slightly smaller than the new Pontiac G6 Convertible, which also features a folding hardtop roof. Ford may be a bit late to the hardtop convertible game, but that's a mere speck in the eye, compared to our North American Focus, which is a mildly warmed over version of the first generation car that dates back to 1998.

Technically speaking, the European Focus convertible is related to
Hardtop roof is less complex than the one featured in Volvo's C70, but it more than does the trick. (Photo: Ford Motor Company of Canada)
the Volvo C70 in many ways. The two cars ride on the same platform, the C1 architecture, which also underpins the Mazda3 and 5, not to mention a variety of other Volvo and European-market Ford products. Both cars have electro-mechanical power steering, extra-sturdy underpinnings, although the Focus is unique in that it has the trademarked control-blade rear suspension for extra nimble handling. But really, that's where the similarities stop, and the differences start.

But
Large bottom is a telltale sign of a hardtop convertible. (Photo: Ford Motor Company of Canada)
the two cars are not equal; they were designed as two very different vehicles, and were intended to compete in different market segments. As you may have guessed, the Volvo is the car used to target the upmarket segment, whereas the Ford aims for the everyday person who's willing to spend less money for an equivalent, but less advanced product. For starters, the new Focus C-C's roof is less complex; it has two pieces instead of the Volvo's three-piece roof, a design that's more costly to make and fit. The tradeoff for the Ford's cost savings comes in other areas, namely looks and interior space. Because the roof folds in half, instead of in thirds, the roof panels are long, meaning that it must be stowed away in a longer bay. This explains why the Focus C-C has a bottom and a rear overhang the size of South Africa, whereas the C70 does not.

Having a big tail does have its ups, particularly in trunk space. When
With 500L of cargo space, a hardtop roof and four proper seats, the Focus C-C is a very practical vehicle. (Photo: Ford Motor Company of Canada)
the roof is upright in coupe-mode, there's 500 whole litres (17.7 cu-ft) of cargo space available. That's almost 50 litres (1.8 cu-ft) more than Ford's midsize Fusion sedan! The down side is that in order to span the length of the cabin with a two-piece roof, the section holding the rear window has a steep angle, drastically reducing rear-seat headroom. Ford claims that the Focus C-C is a proper four-seater convertible, but like all cars in this category, legroom is bound to be tight.
Khatir Soltani
Khatir Soltani
Automotive expert
As a car enthusiast, he tests and compares vehicles from different categories through the eyes of the consumer, ensuring relevant and objective reviews.
  • Over 6 years experience as a car reviewer
  • Over 50 test drives in the last year
  • Involved in discussions with virtually every auto manufacturer in Canada