- Acceleration (0-62mph): 12.7 sec
- Top Speed: 112 mph
The excellent ride and handling can almost make you forget that you are in fact driving a slightly oversized car with what would traditionally be considered an undersized engine. And on city streets you will not encounter any situations where the car gets anywhere near its performance limits. The 123 bhp of the EcoBoost engine, at least, are more than enough to put you on top of any situation in an urban or suburban environment.
And though we have complained about it, the exterior styling is such that it does not hinder perceptibly the performance of the car even at motorway speeds, with a decent drag coefficient of 0.371. This means that you are not likely to feel overpowered by headwinds, or indeed vulnerable to strong side winds, even though you are driving a tall car with a small engine.
But there are situations that will remind you that the laws of physics still apply to you and your car, and that you probably should pay some more attention to your driving. An example of this is if you need to go up a fairly steep incline (as is typical of some hilly towns in the country) at 30mph and you find yourself in the wrong gear, for example in 3rd gear. Just as readily as the gas pedal would normally throw your forwards with oomph, now the engine will feel completely choked out and flooring the gas pedal will only aggravate the sense of confusion when the car isn’t responding with the same effortlessness with which you were used to. A simple gear down-shift is all it takes to reinvigorate the car completely in just one second, and get it back into its aggressive character, but this experience should remind you that you are driving a specific kind of car, with specific limits.
And some of the specific limits will, as is the case with most mini SUVs, include off-roading. Just because you have a huge spare wheel stuck to the back of the car does not mean that you can go up a muddy hill. Going up a steep hill covered in tarmac is an interesting enough experience as it is. In our case, this was not helped by the fact that the test-drive model that we got to play with did not come with hill start assist, but you can rest assured that this feature will be available in models on sale later this year.
We must say that we have not had enough time and the right roads to push the car to its proper limits. So we cannot say much about where its traction starts to give, when it starts to understeer, or when you get to feel any body roll. But the good news is that none of these things should be an issue where you are most likely to be driving this car.