Future Ford Focus Titanium to offer manual transmission
The new Ford Focus is offered in two basic forms – a sedan and a 5-door hatchback – with S, SE, SEL and Titanium trimlines for the sedan while the hatchback offers only the SE, SEL and Titanium packages (not including the upcoming high performance Focus ST). Whether it is the Focus sedan or hatchback, S and SE models come with a standard 5-speed manual transmission while the SEL and Titanium models are currently offered strictly with a 6-speed PowerShift automatic transmission but reports indicate that later this year, that will change as the Focus Titanium models may soon benefit from a handling package and 5-speed manual transmission.
Car and Driver has reported that Ford has received a great deal of consumer interest in the new Ford Focus Titanium coming with all of the bells, buzzers and gadgets along with an improved handling package with a 5-speed manual transmission. Even though the new Focus models equipped with the 6-speed PowerShift automatic transmission offer better fuel economy than the manually shifted Foci, it is no secret that being able to row your own gears certainly makes driving more exciting. I have had the pleasure of spending time behind the wheel of a handful of Focus models and while the 6-speed PowerShift is a nice, smooth transmission; the 5-speed manual transmission added more fun-to-drive factor so it comes as no surprise to hear that consumers want the higher end amenities of the Focus Titanium along with the driving excitement of the manual transmission.
In addition to being more fun to drive, it will be interesting to see how the addition of the 5-speed manual to the Ford Focus Titanium affects the price as in those models currently offered with a choice of the 5-speed manual or the 6-speed PowerShift, the automatic option is almost $1,100 more expensive. The 5-speed manual transmission option is not currently listed on the Ford Focus configurator but once it appears, we will have a much better look at whether it will be part of a package or if it is as simple as selecting one transmission or the other.
Only 7% of Focus S and SE buyers have opted for the manual transmission option thus far so it looks like the take rate might not be all that fantastic but with the manual transmission option already being available in lower trimline models, it doesn’t make much sense that Ford wouldn’t at least make the 5-speed manual available for those who want to drive the premium package Focus while still being able to enjoy the fun of the third pedal.
Source: Car and Driver