- Excellent practicality
- Stand-out looks
- Superb equipment levels
The Ford Puma is one of my favourite cars at the moment, and I've sampled several versions since it arrived in 2019. The version I tested here is the entry-level Titanium model with mild-hybrid technology (MHEV).
It brought something new to the Crossover party and rightly met with huge praise for its style and innovative features.
The Puma has deservedly collected numerous awards, and it's destined to become Ford’s biggest seller in Europe.
The Puma name first arrived on a Fiesta based sports coupé back in 1997, and it was very popular, but only stayed in production for four years. This time, the Puma in a completely different form is certain to be a much bigger success and stay around for much longer.
The Puma Titanium has some neat touches, including the pouncing Puma that appears in the dash when you press the starter button or as a puddle light in the dark.
It also stands out from the rest of the crossover crowd because of its stylish exterior looks.
Inside, you'll notice it still clearly takes much from its Fiesta sibling, but that isn't a bad thing.
On the practical side, the Puma boasts impressive carrying capacity. The boot is large for a car of this size, but comes complete with Ford’s MegaBox. This is an 80-litre storage space which lies beneath the split-level boot floor and is ideal for carrying wet sports equipment, muddy wellies or anything else that is liable to cause a mess. It has a drain plug at the bottom and can be hosed out afterwards.
If you need even more space, you can collapse the split-folding rear seats to get class-leading room.
There's plenty of room for four to travel in comfort, and you can pack in five for shorter journeys.
The seats are very comfortable and fully adjustable, and there's good all-round visibility. As in all Ford models, the switches, and controls are clear and easy to read and use. There's even a traditional handbrake, which is a bit of a surprise.
A smart flat-bottomed steering wheel houses the usual push-button controls, while the dashboard layout is typical Ford with a central display screen for connectivity and sat nav. It also comes fitted with a smart 12.5-inch TFT instrument panel and a huge amount of equipment.
A Quickclear heated windscreen is ideal for winter motoring and there is a decent sound system as well as Ford SYNC 3 navigation and full smartphone integration.
You get lots of advanced driver assistance aids like Cruise Control and Pre-Collision Assist plus Lane Departure Warning and handy drive modes for Normal, Eco, Sport, Slippery and Trail conditions. You also get pre-collision assist, autonomous emergency braking, hill start assist, pedestrian/cyclist detection and hill star assist.
This model features exclusive 17-inch alloys, privacy glass for the rear, front fog lights with cornering lights, and LED rear lamps.
A 1.0-litre EcoBoost 3-cylinder petrol unit linked to mild hybrid technology provides the power, and it's good for 123bhp. As a result, the Puma in this version with its automatic 7-speed gearbox takes 9.6 seconds to tackle the sprint to 62mph before going on to a top speed of 118mph.
According to the WLTP figures, it's capable of as much as 58.9mpg with a low figure of 38.2mpg, and I averaged almost 50mpg during a week of mixed driving.
I loved this Puma, and it was a smashing car to drive, with great handling and a comfortable ride even with its sports suspension.
Handsome, practical, reasonably frugal and entertaining, the Puma ticks all the boxes, and it's also good value for money, with Titanium models offering a surprisingly generous amount of equipment for an entry level model.