Fords are real mean movers

UK market leader Ford demonstrated the class-leading efficiency of its vehicles in this year's MPG Marathon based in Gloucestershire.

The all-new Ford Focus, driven smoothly round a 370-mile course, returned 56.3mpg - an improvement of over 17.6 per cent on Ford's published figures. Winner of its class (petrol with CO2 emissions of over 120g/km), the Ford Focus Zetec 125PS with UK-built 1.6-litre engine has a declared fuel economy of 47.9mpg on a combination of urban and out-of-town routes.

But smart driving, anticipating the road ahead, accelerating smoothly and changing gear correctly, squeezed an extra 8.4 miles out of every gallon used on the marathon.

The three Ford Transit vans entered in the MPG Marathon won two best-in-class titles and another achieved 59mpg - almost 41 per cent ahead of the short wheelbase 2.2-litre 100PS Ford Transit ECOnetic's normal fuel economy.

The two class winning Ford Transits - a medium wheelbase 2.2 Transit 86PS and the very latest Euro Stage 5 long wheelbase 2.2 Transit ECOnetic 125PS - improved their homologated figures by 50.78 and 40.51 per cent respectively.

In a separate event on the Continent, a 65.6mpg Ford Mondeo 1.6 TDCi covered 1,343 miles on a single 70-litre tank, averaging 88.3mpg overall travelling from Russia to Sweden via Norway.

Tom Croft, Foray Motor Group sales manager, said: "Fuel efficiency, CO2 and other green credentials have become the new 'why buys', steering vehicle choice. Ford's success at these MPG marathon events shows that the blue oval is the best in class."