Ford has confirmed its Puma compact crossover will be arriving on Australian shores before the month is up, and has created a virtual test-drive system to help prospective buyers check out the car from the comfort of their computer.
Supplementing the virtual test drive program is the promotional driveaway pricing for the three models coming to Australia. The compact SUV starting will start from $31,990 on the road.
Of course, we at Chasing Cars know that as interactive as an online experience can be, it won’t be able to replace the genuine article. Ford knows this and says it will also help soften the learning curve for buyers who may not be accustomed to contemporary infotainment systems.
The final push to get buyers across the line, the brand is offering to lop a further $500 off the purchase price for new buyers who test-drive the Puma in person, and $1,000 for existing Ford customers. Neat.
Andrew Birkic, President and CEO of Ford Australia and New Zealand is confident these promotions will make buying simpler than ever before thanks to first-hand feedback: “we’ve worked with our dealer network to offer customers a straightforward, informative and effortless experience.”
Combining these incentives with the car’s intriguing appearance will bring the new Puma right into line with a popular and quirky mix of contenders including the Mazda CX-30, Nissan Juke, Kia Seltos and Toyota C-HR.
Mr Birkic showed further belief in the new Puma, and described the car as “a cutting edge, sharply designed and smartly packaged urban SUV that strengthens customer choice in Australia,”
When the cars arrive, the range will start with the basic $31,990 Puma FWD powered by a 92kW/170Nm one-litre turbocharged triple.
That car comes well equipped with Ford’s Sync infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, carbon-look trim inserts, leather-wrapped steering wheel and wireless smartphone charging.
Ford may have packed with comfort and convenience features into the base Puma. However, it misses out on adaptive cruise control and front parking sensors (an option pack sees these added for $1500), though it does get AEB with pedestrian detection, traffic sign recognition and lane-keep assist standard.
For $33,990 driveaway Ford adorns the Puma ST-Line with a larger 12.3-inch touchscreen, paddle shifters, 17-inch alloys, sportier suspension and more aggressive body-kit.
Sitting atop the Puma range the ST-Line V can be had for $36,990 driveaway with chrome exterior trim, 18-inch alloy wheels, tinted rear windows, power tailgate, keyless entry and a premium B&O stereo.
Ford has guaranteed that the new Puma will begin arriving in Australian showrooms by the end of this month, while the bigger Escape stablemate will land in early 2021. We will be putting the Puma through its paces as soon as we can, so stay tuned for that.
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