Ford prepares for road tax-free petrol Focus

The 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine, the name given to Ford’s most efficient petrol engines, will be introduced to the new Ford Focus in 2012, Ford has confirmed.

As a result, the Ford Focus fitted with the EcoBoost engine will be the first to see CO2 emissions fall below 120g/km – enough to qualify for free first year road tax.

Ford already boasts a diesel engine range, Econetic, which offers free road tax levels of CO2 emissions, but petrol engines are traditionally less efficient than similar-size diesels.

Despite the relatively small size and low CO2 emissions of the new 1.0-litre Ecoboost engine, the Ford Focus will still deliver 125PS.

This is more power than the 1.6-litre diesel currently offered with the Focus and even the lowest-power variant of the 2.0-litre diesel option.

However, it will not just be the Ford Focus which benefits from the new 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine. It is also expected to be used in the new Ford C-Max, a compact five-seat people carrier based on the same platform as the Ford Focus.

It will also be used for Ford’s latest new model, the Ford B-Max, which is a supermini-based MPV offering more space than the likes of the Ford Fiesta without sacrificing its compact, city-friendly dimensions.

Ford is expected to target sub-100g/km CO2 emissions for the B-Max in the shape of diesel Econetic engines but the introduction of the 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine will provide a frugal petrol alternative.

The EcoBoost engine will be built at Ford’s Cologne engine plant, which has built 26 million engines for Ford over a period of 50 years.