A few weeks back, I was asked to try out 2017 Ford‘s Focus car with their Ford Sync Technology.
Sadly I didn’t have a license to drive and I asked Jared to do the test driving and applaud him for it.
Here is what had to write about.
When Ford contacted Ming about putting together a Bluesfest playlist for their 2017 Focus model, he was intrigued, but since he doesn’t drive, he tasked me with the actual driving of the car. Of course I accepted without being entirely clear on what was happening. In the event, I drove a 2017 Ford Focus around Ottawa for a week. The experience taught me a lot about cars, Ottawa street rules, and of course myself.
A car is a means of transportation, but also a means of expression. The man in the Mustang is saying something very different about himself than the teen in the Fiat. But what does the man in the Ford Focus wish to say about himself? Well, he probably hasn’t thought about it too much. He’s more interested in practicality, and maybe he even has a family. He’s probably got a few empty Booster Juice cups in the back, and maybe a squash racquet in the trunk.
Ladies and gentleman, I am not that man. And so I feel somewhat out of place in the new Focus. It’s like wearing a suit that fits wrong. It’s still a nice suit and I can appreciate it for that, but it feels weird.
That said, this car is pretty cool.
We were given the fully-loaded edition, so results may vary, but this car parks itself and stuff. It is a horrifyingly humbling experience to have a vehicle tell you to take your hands off the wheel as it skillfully backs itself into a perfect parallel park. My self esteem still hasn’t recovered.
Even more mother-knows-best is the proximity sensor system the car has, which completely surrounds the car. You will know if you’re too close to the car beside you by the alarming beeping. It even turns down your music to screech at you. Wow, I feel safe and afraid.
It tells you when you’re within the lane, and softly warns you if you begin to drift. When you reverse, it gives you a camera complete with a superimposed turning circle. I’ll never look backwards again!
What was most interesting to us about the car was its sound system. Ford Sync allows you to use your phone from the dash of the car. So of course the first thing we did was to throw on Spotify and see what the speakers could do.
For a family vehicle, its sound system is capable of a lot. The subwoofer in the trunk of the car does a stellar job shaking the vehicle (and all vehicles around it) to their sprockets. We tested a few tracks, and found that the sound separation and clarity is very good. There are many speakers, and the sound wonderfully fills the cabin. It’s the best experience I’ve had listening to music in a car. Meanwhile, Ming is in the backseat, Instagramming some embarrassing video of me singing along to The Strokes.
The last thing I’ll mention is vehicle performance. The car handles quite nicely, and the power steering doesn’t feel too over-the-top. It is quick in tight situations and I never had any difficulty stopping it.
I’ve never driven a Ford Focus before, but I’ve understood their reputation to be fairly middling amongst car-heads. I mean, when was the last time you saw a Ford Focus in a racing game and felt like it was the best option. However, this car has a lot of energy under the hood. It’s smaller than Focuses have been, and it makes it feel fast. Driving this reminds me of driving my dad’s 2004 Contour. It feels like it has too much power for a car this small, but that’s a good thing.
In all, I enjoyed driving Ming around, and I think the idea of giving bloggers cars is both risky and potentially rewarding. I guess it helps if they have a license.
I have one pass for July 12th.
Want to win it?
Just comment on the bottom and answer this question: What is the LCD Soundsystem track that is in the Spotify playlist?