Ford resurrecting Puma nameplate in 2019
Don't expect it to soothe your 1990s nostalgia.
Ford confirmed it will resurrect the dormant Puma nameplate in 2019.
Sold in Europe between 1997 and 2002, the original Puma was a front-wheel drive coupe based on the fourth-generation Fiesta. Some variants of the Puma locked horns with the Mitsubishi Eclipse in terms of pricing and performance. The born-again Puma will rekindle the rivalry, because it will arrive as a car-based crossover in the vein of the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross.
In other words: don't expect the new Puma to soothe your 1990s nostalgia. Ford released a dark teaser image to give us an early look at the model, which it claims is seductively-styled. The photo reveals little, even after we cropped and edited it, but we can at least tell the Puma borrows a handful of styling cues (like oval headlights with integrated LEDs and a low-mounted grille) from the 2020 Escape.
While full technical specifications remain under wraps, Ford confirmed the Puma will be available with a 48-volt mild hybrid system built around its familiar turbocharged, 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine. The most powerful version will offer 155 horsepower. Front-wheel drive will come standard, and all-wheel drive might be offered at an extra cost on select variants.
Manufactured in Romania, the 2020 Ford Puma will make its public debut before the end of 2019. In Europe, it will slot between the EcoSport and the Escape, which is known as the Kuga across the pond. It's too early to tell whether the Puma will join the company's American portfolio.