The American automobile concern Ford, followinghis policy of constant expansion of production and production of new models, put before the engineering and engineering corps a difficult task, the creation of a sports car for the European consumer. The project initially turned out to be difficult in fact, since in Europe long ago they went to Ferrari and Lamborghini, and sportiness to these cars with racing character does not take. Still, Ford decided to try his luck in the difficult matter of fair competition. The American had a trump card ready - the affordable price of his car.
And the calculation was correct, since the Italianhandsome men were not just expensive, but very expensive. And since every young European wants to ride a fast sports car, the Ford project could be realized. So, in 1993 the development of a sports car of small class, a two-door coupe, with front-wheel drive was started. Constructive developments of this direction Ford already had, but the test of access to the European market with a small car was made for the first time. And, nevertheless, the work went. First of all, it was necessary to determine the platform for the future car, the most suitable was the base of Ford Fiesta. A new sport car named Ford Puma.
Of course, the body was completely redesigned,the running gear was changed within reasonable limits, giving the front suspension more sportiness, and considerably enlarging the lateral stabilizer. Exterior of the new car made visually fast and dynamic due to the inclination of the windscreen and increased body overhangs. The engine was also given a lot of attention. A standard Zetec SE engine was used, which, in fact, was forced, making a boring of cylinders from 76 to 80 mm. The engine turned out to be very quick, 125 hp, for a two-door coupe, which was Ford Puma, that was enough. The car was fitted with a five-speed gearbox with a short shift lever of a sports type.
Ford Puma was created under strict controlsymmetry, this condition was decided to be met for greater stability of the high-speed machine. First of all, the semi-axes of the front drive were balanced. Engineers expected a significant fuel consumption by a forced engine, however, Ford Puma consumed only 7.5 liters per 100 km. This circumstance significantly increased the European chances of the car. The brake system of the prototype Ford Fiesta in principle suited the designers in relation to the sports coupe for reliability and braking performance, so it was installed on the sports car without significant modifications.
At the end of 1996, the car Ford Puma wasis completely ready, and in 1997 it was shown at the Geneva Motor Show. At that time, Europe was experiencing a kind of boom in demand for small-car small dimensions of the car. In America, such a demand has never been and, accordingly, the experience of selling small cars, too, was not there. So Ford had to learn such sales in Europe using the example of his new sports car Ford Puma, whose price, by the way, was quite affordable. Whatever it was, but the global spread of an American car in Europe did not receive. The UK has ordered 500 Ford Puma, with the right-hand drive, and the sport car supplies to the European sector are over.