Ford Kuga (2013-present)

The Ford Kuga has everything you need in a family crossover - but leaves you wanting more

Strengths & Weaknesses

Strengths 

Well equipped
Economical for a big SUV
Spacious interior

Weaknesses 

More expensive than alternatives
Doesn't excel in any area
Interior quality isn't as good as rivals'
Best New Discount

Ford Kuga Diesel Estate 2.0 tdci 180 titanium x 5dr auto

Total RRP £34,795

Your quote £28,387

You Save £6,408

By any measure, the Ford Kuga is a good family car. Its tall, boxy shape means that there’s decent amount of space for passengers in the front and back. The boot can take a baby buggy and weekly shop, it comes well-equipped (apart from a lack of parking sensors on the cheapest car) and it’s comfortable on the road as well as being smooth and stable to drive.

The car was recently updated with a new exterior design and improved technology inside. The dashboard is straightforward to use, with a touchscreen and sat-nav fitted as standard to all but the cheapest Zetec version. Every car comes with a heated windscreen, digital radio and voice control. Up-to-date technology means that the car can read out text messages and is able to park itself automatically.

On more expensive models, you can open the boot when your hands are full by poking your foot underneath the rear bumper. There’s the option of four-wheel drive and the Kuga’s engine range is well thought-out with petrol and diesel options that offer a reasonable blend of performance, efficiency and quietness. The car was awarded a full five stars for safety when independently crash-tested by Euro NCAP.

If you can find a Ford Kuga deal offering a few thousand pounds off the price, then it’s worth a look. But as merely a good car, it’s overshadowed by some other excellent crossover vehicles that cost less and offer more.

Crossovers are in big demand. These vehicles include the Nissan Qashqai and Kia Sportage and their sales are increasing faster than any other type of vehicle. Crossovers combine the tall driving position and large interior of an off-roader, with the comfortable and efficient mechanical parts from a conventional car. In theory, they offer, space, comfort and economy rolled into one.

When it comes to a smooth ride, the new Peugeot 3008 or VW Tiguan are better at soaking up bumps than the Kuga. The Mazda CX-5 and Seat Ateca feel more agile and responsive than the Ford. The Tiguan and Honda CR-V have considerably more space in their boots, while the 3008 and forthcoming Mini Countryman have far more luxurious, individual and hi-tech interiors. For a combination of the lot, then the Renault Kadjar has the edge.

You can read more about how the Ford Kuga’s dimensions compare with rivals, but there’s not a lot that stands out from the crowd. The car’s main distinctive feature is its redesigned front grille, which makes the car look more macho and a bit American, but you’ll really have to love that look to consider buying a car for that reason alone.

Particularly when official Kuga pricing starts at around £21,000. That’s almost £2,000 more than a Renault Kadjar, nearly £3,000 over a Kia Sportage, and roughly £2,000 less than a larger VW Tiguan.

As a used car, or discounted new model, then the Kuga does make a lot of sense, but it’s worth carefully considering your options because there are plenty of excellent alternatives.

Last Updated 

Monday, December 5, 2016 - 13:15

Key facts 

Warranty : 
Three years/60,000 miles
Boot size: 
406 litres
Width: 
1,838mm
Length: 
4,524mm
Height: 
1,689mm
Tax (min to max): 
£110 - £205

Best Ford Kuga for... 

Ford Kuga Zetec 1.5 TDCi 120PS
Official tests suggest that you’ll get 64.2mpg from this Kuga, but real-world tests suggests that figure is closer to 44.8mpg, even so, this is the most economical model - just don’t expect searing performance.
Ford Kuga Zetec 2.0 TDCi 150
Pay to add parking sensors and sat-nav to the Zetec trim for a family car that ticks most boxes. The 150hp diesel offers a good blend of performance and fuel economy.
Ford Kuga ST-Line 2.0 TDCi 180
With a 0-62mph acceleration time of 9.2sec, the 180hp diesel is the fastest Kuga. ST-Line cars look sportier and should feel it too, with firmer suspension.
Ford Kuga Zetec 1.5 EcoBoost 120PS
The cheapest Kuga it might be, but this feels slow and is no more economical than the more powerful 150hp petrol version.

Ford Kuga History 

  • February 2013 The first of the all-new Ford Kugas arrive in Britain.
  • February 2014 1.6-litre EcoBoost petrol engine with Durashift six-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive added
  • August 2014 New top-of-the-range Titanium X Sport trim offers chunkier panels on the outside, rear-view camera and sat-nav.
  • March 2015 Power from the 2-litre diesel engine is increased to 180hp. A 1.5-litre petrol EcoBoost engine is also introduced, replacing the less efficient 1.6-litre petrol.
  • December 2015 New Kuga Titanium Sport model has 18in alloy wheels and automatic parking. A new, less-powerful, 120hp version of the 1.5-litre petrol engine is offered.
  • December 2016 The first updated Kuga models arrive with a new design that has a wide six-sided grille at the front, less complicated interior and efficient 1.5-litre 120hp diesel engine.
  • December 2016 The top-of-the-range Ford Kuga Vignale arrives with a high-quality leather on the seats and improved customer service.

Understanding Ford Kuga car names 

  • Kuga
  • Engine
    2.0 TDCi 180
  • Trim
    Titanium
  • Gearbox
    Powershift
  • Driven wheels
    AWD
  • Engine
    The size of the engine is shown in litres (here it's 2.0, and the power is shown in horsepower (hp), which can also be abbreviated to PS. Diesel engines have the letters TDCi, while petrol engines are called EcoBoost.
  • Trim
    The trim level of a car affects the amount of standard equipment that is fitted. The cheapest Kugas are badged Zetec, followed by Titanium, ST-Line and then Vignale.
  • Gearbox
    Ford’s Powershift automatic is available on the more powerful four-wheel-drive Kugas, while the less powerful models are manuals.
  • Driven wheels
    Two-wheel drive Kugas may be badged 2WD, while four-wheel drive cars - also known as all-wheel drive - have the lettwers AWD.

Ford Kuga Engines 

Petrol: 1.5 EcoBoost 120PS, 1.5 EcoBoost 150PS, 1.5 EcoBoost 182PS Diesel: 1.5 TDCi 120PS, 2.0 TDCi 150PS, 2.0 TDCi 180PS

There are some good engine choices available with the Ford Kuga but the least expensive one - the 1.5-litre EcoBoost petrol engine with 120 horsepower (also written as 120PS) - is not one. Its main virtue is that it’s cheap, but you’ll find it slow to accelerate and it’s no more economical than the more powerful 150 horsepower (hp) version of the same engine.

That 150hp engine accelerates faster and feels quick enough for driving in town or on motorways. Official figures state that fuel economy is 45.6mpg, but the Equa Index, which calculates fuel consumption in real-world driving, suggests that you should expect 36.2mpg.

You can choose a more powerful petrol engine with 182hp, but this only comes with four-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox, which makes it slower to accelerate and less economical.

Diesel engines are a much more popular choice for the Kuga, because they use less fuel, but are more expensive, though, so low-mileage drivers may be better off paying less for a petrol model.

Again, the cheapest option is slow: the 1.5-litre 120 hp diesel is the most sluggish Kuga of the lot, taking 12.7sec to accelerate. If you have the patience, then your reward comes with better fuel economy. Officially it’s 67.3mpg but the Equa Index suggests that you should expect 44.8mpg.

That’s better than the more powerful 2-litre 150hp diesel engine, which is 4mpg worse. Even so, this is a popular choice because the engine is quiet when you’re driving at a steady speed, and the car responds quickly when you accelerate. It’s £850 more than the lesser diesel and you can choose this engine with either two-wheel drive or less fuel-efficient four-wheel drive in Zetec trim only.

The most powerful 182hp diesel engine only comes with four-wheel drive in Titanium, ST-Line or Vignale trim. Compared to the 150hp diesel, acceleration from 0-62mph is faster by a second, which you do notice when driving, but fuel economy is similar. It’s the only engine that offers a choice between a manual or automatic gearbox.

Fuel

Official fuel economy

Power

Acceleration

Top speed

1.5 EcoBoost 120PS

Petrol

45.6mpg

120hp

0-62mph: 12.5sec

112mph

1.5 EcoBoost 150PS

Petrol

45.6mpg

150hp

0-62mph: 9.7sec

121mph

1.5 EcoBoost 182PS AWD

Petrol

38.2mpg

182hp

0-62mph: 10.1sec

124mph

1.5 TDCi 120PS

Diesel

64.2mpg

120hp

0-62mph: 12.7sec

108mph

2.0 TDCi 150PS

Diesel

60.1mpg

150hp

0-62mph: 10.1sec

121mph

2.0 TDCi 150PS AWD

Diesel

54.3mpg

150hp

0-62mph: 9.9sec (auto: 10.9sec)

119mph

2.0 TDCi 180PS AWD

Diesel

54.3mpg

180hp

0-62mph: 9.2sec (auto: 10sec)

126mph

 

Ford Kuga Trims 

Zetec, Titanium, ST-Line, Vignale

There are four different Ford Kuga trim levels, offering different amounts of standard equipment. You also have the option to add more features by paying individually for some options.

The cheapest Zetec cars come with 17in alloy wheels, air conditioning, digital radio, heated windscreen and Ford’s Sync system, which can read out new text messages. The cars also have a start button, so you don’t need to put the key in the ignition to start it. This trim level isn’t available with the most powerful 180hp diesel engine.

For a large, tall car, rear parking sensors are a notable omission, but you can add those for £275. If you did want sat-nav, this can be fitted for £895, which includes a big 8in touchscreen and more advanced voice control.

Based on official prices, this is a cheaper option than upgrading to the next trim level, Titanium, which does include the parking sensors, sat-nav and touchscreen, but costs an additional £3,400. You do get other luxuries with this car too, including part-leather seats, mood lighting, windscreen wipers that automatically activate when it rains and headlights that switch themselves on when it gets dark.

Keyless entry is included, so you don’t need to take your key out of your pocket, while the side mirrors are motorised, so fold in at the touch of a button.

ST-Line cars are supposed to be sportier and cost around £1,500 more than Titanium versions. You don’t get more power from the engines but extra panels on the outside make the car look chunkier and lower to the ground, larger 18in dark alloy wheels, automatic parking, sports seats and a firmer suspension that is expected make the car feel more stable and responsive in corners, but less effective at soaking up bumps. Keyless entry and mood lighting are not included.

If you want heated seats, a rearview camera or panoramic sunroof on any of these cars, then you’ll have to pay extra.

Top-of-the-range is the Kuga Vignale, fitted with heated full leather seats and fitted with a more expensive Sony sound system. The boot is motorised, and you can open it by poking your foot underneath the bumper. You also have the other benefits of owning a Vignale model, so your car will be collected from your door when it needs servicing and delivered back to you.

The price is an additional £3,250 over ST-Line models. The least powerful petrol and diesel engines are not available in Vignale trim.

Ford Kuga Reliability and warranty 

The Kuga was mid-table in the 2016 Auto Express Driver Power survey, being ranked 107 out of 150 for reliability. Owners were generally more disgruntled by rattles than exasperated by major failures, and Ford’s track record suggests that the car is less likely to suffer from mechanical problems than many alternatives: Warrantywise, which offers aftermarket cover for secondhand vehicles, rates Ford as the ninth most reliable manufacturer out of 36, based on warranty claims.

This version of the Ford Kuga has never been recalled, so if you’re buying a used example you don’t need to worry about making sure any recall work has been carried out.

The Ford warranty offered on new Kugas is fairly basic for a modern car, lasting three years or 60,000 miles, whichever comes first. If you buy a used model with some remaining warranty, then this will be transferred to you.

Used Ford Kuga 

Since it first went on sale, the Ford Kuga has been a popular car and it has helped to keep second-hand prices high.

Now that an updated model has gone on sale, early examples of the car, which are around four years old, are now more affordable. You should be able to get a good petrol or diesel car for around £12,000.

The most powerful diesel Kuga has always come with four-wheel drive as standard. From 2013 until March 2015, this car was the 163 horsepower (hp) diesel Kuga. That engine was then upgraded with extra power, taking it to 180hp.

If you want a petrol model, then aim for one of the more efficient 1.5-litre EcoBoost engines, which were introduced from March 2015.

It’s also worth looking out for Kuga Titanium X Sport models. Until the arrival of the Vignale in December 2016 on the updated car, these were top-of-the-range models, stacked with equipment, including a rear-view camera, sat-nav, automatic parking, 19in alloy wheels and chunkier bumpers. They were expensive when new, but cost little more than a less well-equipped Titanium X model now.

Ford Kuga Prices

Ford Kuga ST-Line

1.5 ecoboost 176 st-line 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 32.1mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £27,628

You could save up to: £5217

1.5 ecoboost st-line 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £23,723

You could save up to: £4622

1.5 tdci st-line 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £23,619

You could save up to: £5116

2.0 tdci 180 st-line 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £26,451

You could save up to: £5494

2.0 tdci 180 st-line 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £27,861

You could save up to: £5734

2.0 tdci st-line 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 60.1mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £24,560

You could save up to: £5225

2.0 tdci st-line 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £25,330

You could save up to: £5355

Ford Kuga ST-Line X

1.5 ecoboost 176 st-line x 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 34mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £28,938

You could save up to: £5507

1.5 ecoboost st-line x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 44.8mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £25,133

You could save up to: £4912

1.5 tdci st-line x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £25,329

You could save up to: £5406

2.0 tdci 180 st-line x 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £27,861

You could save up to: £5784

2.0 tdci 180 st-line x 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £29,271

You could save up to: £6024

2.0 tdci st-line x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 60.1mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £25,970

You could save up to: £5515

2.0 tdci st-line x 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £27,040

You could save up to: £5645

Ford Kuga Titanium

1.5 ecoboost 176 titanium 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 31.4mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £25,910

You could save up to: £5335

1.5 ecoboost titanium 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £22,005

You could save up to: £4740

1.5 tdci titanium 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £21,751

You could save up to: £5384

2.0 tdci 180 titanium 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £24,583

You could save up to: £5762

2.0 tdci 180 titanium 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £25,993

You could save up to: £6002

2.0 tdci titanium 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 60.1mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £22,692

You could save up to: £5493

2.0 tdci titanium 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £23,462

You could save up to: £5623

Ford Kuga Titanium X

1.5 ecoboost 176 titanium x 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 32.1mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £28,304

You could save up to: £5741

1.5 ecoboost titanium x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 44.8mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £24,399

You could save up to: £5146

1.5 tdci titanium x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £24,145

You could save up to: £5790

2.0 tdci 180 titanium x 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £26,977

You could save up to: £6168

2.0 tdci 180 titanium x 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £28,387

You could save up to: £6408

2.0 tdci titanium x 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 60.1mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £25,086

You could save up to: £5899

2.0 tdci titanium x 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £25,856

You could save up to: £6029

Ford Kuga Zetec

1.5 ecoboost 120 zetec 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £18,969

You could save up to: £4226

1.5 ecoboost 120 zetec [nav] 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £19,777

You could save up to: £4363

1.5 ecoboost 176 zetec 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 31.4mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £23,815

You could save up to: £4980

1.5 ecoboost 176 zetec [nav] 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 31.4mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £24,623

You could save up to: £5117

1.5 ecoboost zetec 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £19,910

You could save up to: £4385

1.5 ecoboost zetec [nav] 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel petrol
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £20,718

You could save up to: £4522

1.5 tdci zetec 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £19,656

You could save up to: £5029

1.5 tdci zetec [nav] 5dr 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 64.2mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £20,464

You could save up to: £5166

2.0 tdci zetec 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £21,760

You could save up to: £5335

2.0 tdci zetec 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £23,171

You could save up to: £5574

2.0 tdci zetec 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £21,367

You could save up to: £5268

2.0 tdci zetec [nav] 5dr

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears manual

Starting at: £22,568

You could save up to: £5472

2.0 tdci zetec [nav] 5dr auto

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 54.3mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £23,979

You could save up to: £5711

2.0 tdci zetec [nav] 5dr auto 2wd

  • Doors 5
  • Fuel diesel
  • Economy 45.6mpg
  • Gears automatic

Starting at: £22,175

You could save up to: £5405