Ford describes the new Focus, being launched to its dealer network today, as being its most technology packed car yet. It's not fibbing, but not every model gets the lot. Active Park Assist, for example, which does reverse parallel parking for you only comes as standard on the Titanium X, one of the four option packs the new …
News from the alternate dimension...
Next up: Top Gear reviews storage arrays. Mass hysteria etc.
It is on topic, kind'a...
The alternate reality has spoken and it is already here:
Ford thinks that Ferrari is bespoiling the good trademark of the F150 pickup.
It is a pity recording in courtrooms is not allowed. I want to see the judge trying to hold a straight face while the Ford trademark solicitor is trying to present her case.
Ferrari's new Formula one car does have a flat bed with a rocking chair on it and a rack for holding shotguns.
Didn't get stuck in slow moving traffic?
We are talking about Sheffield, England, right?
What day/year was this trial?
Not UK piccies...
Steering wheel on wrong side, German reg plates, car on wrong side of the road.
Re: Not UK piccies
...Engine power quoted in Pferdestärke...
it's quite difficult to move cars from one place to another - or, even, to use library pics to illustrate an article.
I don't want that American-made crap
"ability to spot speed signs and present them on the dashboard display"
"Edge over on a straight and the new Focus will turn the wheel to get you back"
Are you shitting me? I'd have that thing back in the dealer lot in 30 seconds if it did either of those to me. *I* am driving the car, TYVM.
And reviewing cars? Seriously?
"ability to spot speed signs and present them on the dashboard display"
I've had that for years! I've got big glass screens in front and to the side of the driver, and through these you get a retina-level resolution, Stereoscopic 3D image of the world outside your car! Just keep your eyes looking through this screen and you can spot speed signs all over the place!
Seriously, though, what's the point of a safety feature that takes the driver's eyes off the road _at the exact moment things are changing_?! Signs don't say "nothing happening here, move along", they say "this is changing, either now or shortly! Pay attention!". So when a sign's at the side of the road your eyes should be looking out for the change- and for other traffic reacting to that change.
I guess it'd almost be of use if it could read street signs (though we've got GPS for wayfinding...) or if it'd translate signs from one language to another (i.e. from a Chinese to English).
Is this a 2011 or 2012?
fair enough you didn't have a race track
...so you couldn't give the traction control a good whacking. But you mentioned about all this tech and then didn't say much about it apart from the assisted parking.
Sound System, UIs, Sat Navs, GPSs trackings, xPhone integrations, bluetooths, WIFIs, 3Gs, aux ports, data storage, climate control, onboard computer, anti theft tech... can you mod it to run linux? can you hack the guy behind you to go into parking mode if he drives to close? Common reg!!!!
It looks huge, easily as big as a mk1 Mondeo. Especially the estate which looks like it could rival a Granada estate for volume!
I sometimes worry that all of this technology, for all their safety (and revenue) intentions, will make the drivers 'turn off'. See the sat nav "ending up in a river / railway track" craze for an example of people blindly relying on technology.
No word on the hydrogen fuel cell powered propulsion Focus?
the previous version of the standard hatchback was big enough to get a wheelchair in the boot. Apparently a boon for sales to Motability customers.
My mate got a 307 not long after it came out. Same size as the 405.
Also, lots of Jalopnik readers are foaming at the mouth over the all-electric focus*, so any news on that, el Reg?
*though mostly to spite GM, that horrid harbinger of communism to the US.
Are Cars Electric?
Electric cars are a blind alley.
40 mile range, charge them overnight (if you are lucky enough to have a chargepoint), and where does the electric come from?
Coal / Oil / Gas fired power stations.
Hydrogen Fuel Cells are the future.
Shifting responsibility from the driver
Don't forget the downside of all this "safety" tech. The blind spot indicators, for instance, will simply result in drivers relying on them, rather than checking their blind spots and being generally aware of where other vehicles might be in relation to them. I hope they are as good...
.So if I'm in slow-moving traffic and ease over the white lines to pass a cyclist, it's going to automatically steer me back straight into them? Nice.
Not as long as you're signalling. Which you should be.
There's nothing to say you "should" be signalling to overtake a cyclist, in fact more often than not you shouldn't. A signal will most likely indicate to other road users that you intend to turn right (major -> minor) and will possible try to pass on the left.
Most of the time, you shouldn't be overtaking a cyclist with a signal. I say this as someone who is about to take his driving test and has asked this question :-) You should only signal if it will benefit someone and will not confuse anyone.
Indicate at all times
Clearly you've not taken an IAM Advanced Driving Test if you believe that you have to indicate at all times.
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normal practice for most drivers I see. They move out so they can get a better swipe
So how do you know if it will confuse someone? It is far better to always signal, it alerts everyone to the fact that you are doing something other than driving in a straight line.
And I suppose you drive in town at night with dipped headlights as well so everyone can see you - pity they cannot see anything else!
@@@NO : Consult the Highway Code
As you signed to say you agree to abide by it when you applied for your driving license.
The Highway Code recommends that dipped-beam headlights are used regardless of location whenever light or visibility is poor.
The law simply stipulates only that sidelights must be used at night where the speed limit is 30mph or less, and dipped-beam headlights must be used if the speed limit is greater than 30mph.
An advanced driving instuctor would endorse and advance the Highway Code's recommendation.
Think about it, next time you are on the road at dusk. Look at a car coming towards you with only sidelights (or parking lights, as they may be more accurately known). Then look at a car utilising their dipped-beam headlights. Ask yourself, "which of these vehicles is more immediately visible and recognisable to me?" You will then realise that in the interests of safety it is wise to always use dipped-beam.
In Sweden it is law that dipped-beam headlights must be used at all times whilst the vehicle is in motion. They seem to have the right idea.
To the AC tool who thinks driving with dipped headlights at night in a built up area is wrong, I direct you to rule 115 of the highway code:
"You should also use dipped headlights, or dim-dip if fitted, at night in built-up areas and in dull daytime weather, to ensure that you can be seen"
Sidelights, or parking lights as they are officially called (for a reason), aren't enough to make you visible. Hell, even if it's raining you should have dipped beam on.
I'm amazed you're allowed on the road with such limited knowledge.
"There's nothing to say you "should" be signalling to overtake a cyclist, in fact more often than not you shouldn't."
That seems to be a common misconception, but section 163 of the Highway Code clearly states you should always signal when overtaking *any* vehicle. In the latest version this section is even accompanied by a picture of a driver overtaking a cyclist with the right signal illuminated.
"use your mirrors, signal when it is safe to do so, take a quick sideways glance if necessary into the blind spot area and then start to move out "
this is not a good move
Narrow tinted windows?
Clearly the designer had no concept of the blindspot then... or the highway code. Hmmm.
ford forcus 2011
sorry but when they changed the original focus to thease new shapes they ruined it there was nothing wrong with the original focus why change it for this new 2011 model is horrible i mean seriously it looks like its been taken through a hedge backwards lol.
Next up on telly: Ray Mears re-discover the lost art of manual parallel parking. Out ancestors apparently had to do it daily. Wow.
This just in from Richard Hammond
Windows Server 2008 is fat, lazy, and feckless.
Auto Park Assist is a waste of time
If you don't know how to do (or are so bad at it that you need help) one of the 3 major manouvers used in the basic driving test then you don't know how to drive. Please place your license in the shredder and collect your bus pass on the way out.
They are not about showing you can do the manouver
but showing you have the car under control.
Seeing as we seem to be talking UK cars and roads here, can we have a UK kerb rather than a US curb, please?
...and perhaps we can refer to a licence (noun) rather than a license (verb) - Mickey 1 (above).
"The new Focus' other tech works off of a couple of forward facing cameras..."
"off of"? Really?
"The new Focus's other tech works using a couple of forward facing cameras..."
Perhaps you're an American. They use 'off of' a lot I've noticed. Doesn't change the fact that it sounds bloody awful.
Sadly no grammar Nazi icon.
"Sadly no grammar Nazi icon."
You're not paying attention, are you?
I hope it's the pictures.
I don't think it looks very nice. It could be the colour I suppose but it seems 'fussy' at the rear end and ugly at the front. The tech sound good though. Mr. Clarkson will surely find the whole package orgasmic.
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What is a PS in the context of measuring engine power? Normally you see people using horsepower, or, preferably, kilowatts.
1 PS = 0.986 hp
It is metric horsepower. PS refers to "Pferdestärke", you also occasionally see CH and CV, which are the same thing in other languages.
Horse power in German, why it's used outside of Germany I don't know... Here in holland they slip between HP, PK (Paardenkracht) and this all the time.
PS vs bhp
PS _IS_ horsepower - it's the one used in Europe and Japan mainly. There are a few different horsepowers (all around the 750 watt area). PS is used to indicate which one it is. It's a percent or two less than a 'British' bhp iirc, so is basically the same unless you're very picky.
As you say though, kW is a better measure as it's an SI unit. Since a watt is a joule/s and a joule is a Newton meter, a watt is a Nm/s - makes my sums easier!
To the people questioning why El Reg is reviewing cars - are you not interested in the huge amount of new technology that this car obviously has if it can do all the things listed in the article?
German for HorsePower, almost the same as HP. Sort of "metric horsepower" as defined by the German DIN.
1 HP = 1.014PS = 745.7W
Since this is El Reg I'd have expected something more along the lines of "can pull the skin off 9.7M rice puddings", though.
Or, for those who don't speak German, Horsepower. It's not quite that simple, as 1PS is something like 0.996HP, but if you assume them to be equal you won't be too far out.
Nice to see that the honest British horse puts out more work than its German counterpart*.
Presumably the German horse spends four thousandths of its time in Workers' Council meetings, arguing over whether it's still ok to pull the plough if the farmer were allowed to paint it green.
*Although, to be fair, ISTR that yer average horse turns out about three quarters of a Horsepower...
The purpose of a driving test is to check that you can drive. If you start to depend on gadgets to control the car & drive properly, it's time to take the bus. Being unable to parallel park is a test failure, and should always be.
I have a current-model Mondeo. Great car, but the gadgets are less than perfect. The parking beepers are over-sensitve, getting to max beep when you're still a foot away from an obstacle, yet they can't detect a high kerb or a drop. The rain-detecting wipers sometimes don't trigger in light rain if the drops haven't hit the sensor, but sometimes trigger when you don't want it, smearing dirt across the screen. The auto headlights come on too soon, and turn off too late.
And, of course, when you get used to them you have to remember that they aren't there when driving a hire car, or your wife's car. Reverse waiting for the beep & /crunch/.
Will this parallel park gadget check for a child behind the car? Or spot a tyre-slashing bottle in the gutter? Or just make drivers so lazy that they pay even less attention to the road around them than they do already?
Re: Steve's Annoyances
All of those little niggles are things that were sorted out in German cars a decade or more ago.
If you have a choice, go VW/Audi for your next car.
When's the RS out?
I love gadgets like that parking tool, but I have to admit, I really don't think I could trust my car to park itself. It's probably because I've seen too many videos of cars with auto-braking systems driving straight into brick walls..
150PS, that wouldn't be Pferdestark would it? Whatever happened to good old horse power? Although I did notice that some of the cars in the pictures were registered in Köln.
'Open the door Ford'
'I'm sorry Dave, I can't do that.....'
That is so scary, hope I can pull all the fuses out