How do you make Ford’s Focus hatch even more desirable? Apart from equipping it with a talking Knight Rider-style computer the obvious answer is to remove its roof.
As the car most often thought of as the leader of its sector, the Focus is an obvious choice for the topless treatment – and giving the Focus a folding metal roof can only boost the Focus’ loveability.
Another good move by Ford was handing out styling duties to Italian design house Pininfarina, who have given the Focus CC – short for coupe-cabriolet – a stylish, slightly classical feel that means the Ford convertible looks good whatever the weather.
However, a spot of rain needn’t dampen your spirits: that CC element means the Focus has a duality about it that classic roadster didn’t. It can be driven as a cabriolet – or convertible if you prefer – or it can be driven as a four-seat coupe.
Modern folding-metal hard-tops bring with them a structural solidity that convertibles of the past never had, meaning there is little – if any – compromise in driveability over a car with a fixed roof.
With the roof up the CC has all the handling ability, compliance and ride comfort found with all other Focus models. The roof operation is smooth and simple to use, keeping buffeting to a minimum.
In addition, With the roof up the interior of the car is quiet and insulated, so during the winter or on the motorway you can simply put the roof up and drive the Focus CC like you would any other car.
Come summer, however, you can fold it down at the touch of a button and enjoy the sensation of the wind ruffling your hair as you attract admiring glances.
There are 2.0-litre engines in petrol and diesel guises which will suit most tastes, though there also a 1.6-litre petrol engine which should lower runing costs.
Equipped with either of the 2.0-litres the Focus CC is an engaging drive with the required performance from both and stronger fuel economy from the diesel.
There are other reasons to view the CC as two cars in one: with the roof up there’s a large boot and even when the roof is stowed there’s still plenty of space for shopping and luggage – not always the case in a coupe-convertible.
All Focus Coupe-Cabriolet models have alloys, active roll-over protection system, electronically operated and heated door mirrors, CD player and air conditioning as standard – though there are three specifications levels are available overall, with numerous options such as a DVD satnav system, metallic paint, leather trim and parking sensors.
Ultimately few people buy a convertible for the wealth of its equipment or rear searting space though. Convertibles offers a uniquely joyous form of motoring pleasure that cars with a roof intact simply do not.
As an added bonus, modern drop-tops like the Ford Focus CC add real-world everyday practicality. It’s a winning combination, even if it doesn’t talk.