Ford Kuga 2020- review

Ford SUV models – a buyer's guide

What’s the difference between Ford’s SUV models? And which one is right for you? Here’s our definitive guide to the Ford SUV model range.

Graham King Cazoo

By Graham King

Updated: 30 January 2024

There is a wide range of Ford SUV models to choose from and they’re all family-friendly, stylish and good to drive. If you’re looking for a used Ford SUV in 2023, there are five that you’ll see most often so we’re focusing on them here. They are the EcoSport, the Edge, the Puma, the Kuga and the Mustang Mach-E. Our guide can help you decide which one is right for you.

What’s the smallest used Ford SUV model?

Ford’s smallest SUV model is the EcoSport. It’s just over four metres long, which actually makes it one of the shortest SUVs you can buy, so it could be ideal if you haven’t got much parking space at home. When compared to rivals, the EcoSport is usually grouped with slightly longer cars like the Vauxhall Crossland and the Citroen C3 Aircross. Yet despite its small stature the EcoSport is surprisingly spacious and practical, with passenger and boot space comparable to the Ford Focus hatchback, a considerably longer car.

Ford EcoSport

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What’s the largest used Ford SUV model?

The largest Ford SUV model available new in the UK is the electric Mustang Mach-E. At 4.7 metres long, it’s about the same size as the Jaguar F-Pace or the Volvo XC60

However, between 2016 and 2019 Ford made a larger SUV called the Edge. It’s more than 4.8 metres long and has considerably more boot space and legroom in the back than in the Mach-E. Not many were sold, but if you’re after practicality, the Edge might be one to look out for. It came with a choice of  two diesel engines and four-wheel drive was included as standard.

The slightly smaller Ford Kuga, at 4.6 metres long, is more family-friendly than the Mach-E, giving you more headroom in the back and a bigger boot. The Kuga also has a sliding back seat that allows you to adjust the ratio of passenger-to-boot space to suit your needs.

Ford Mustang Mach-E

Do any Ford SUV models have seven seats?

Ford hasn’t sold an SUV model with seven seats in the UK since the 1990s. If you want more than five seats and you still want a Ford, your options are all MPVs such as the mid-size Grand C-MAX and the larger S-Max and Galaxy models. You could also consider the Grand Tourneo Connect and Tourneo Custom: both are actually passenger-carrying versions of Ford vans.

Which Ford SUV model has the biggest boot?

The Ford SUV model with the biggest boot is the Edge, with a capacity of 602 litres. The Kuga is a more car park-friendly size yet it still has a boot large enough for most needs, with a capacity of 412 litres up to the load cover with the rear seat pushed back for maximum legroom, or 526 with the back seat as far forward as it will go. 

The electric Mach-E has slightly less space in the back at 402 litres, while the EcoSport will give you 356 litres to play with – pretty decent for such a small car.

Are there any electric or hybrid Ford SUV models?

The Mustang Mach-E is the only electric car in Ford’s range as of early 2023, although Ford plans to introduce many more electric cars in the next few years, including a battery-powered version of the small Puma SUV and a larger SUV called the Explorer.

There are three versions of the Mustang Mach-E, each with a different maximum battery range. Depending on the model, a fully charged battery could be anywhere between 273 and 372 miles, according to official figures. 

There are several hybrid Ford SUVs available. The latest Kuga is available with full-hybrid (FHEV) or plug-in hybrid (PHEV) power. Both the FHEV and PHEV versions have a 2.5-litre petrol engine plus a battery-powered electric motor. In the FHEV, the battery holds enough charge to drive in electric-only mode for a couple of miles, while the PHEV can manage up to 41 miles when fully charged, according to official figures.

Some Ford SUVs have mild-hybrid power, including Kugas with the 147bhp 2.0-litre diesel engine and Pumas with the 1.0-litre petrol engine. They’re not ‘proper’ hybrids in that they can’t be driven on battery power alone; instead they have an extra electrical system to assist the engine, which helps improve fuel economy and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Ford Kuga plug-in hybrid

Do any Ford SUV models have four-wheel drive?

Just four cars among the ones we’re looking at here are available with four-wheel drive (4WD). There’s a single model of EcoSport with 4WD, which uses the 123bhp 1.5-litre ‘EcoBlue’ diesel engine. 

There’s also a single diesel-powered model of the current version of the Kuga (sold new since 2020) available with 4WD. There’s a wider choice of 4WD models in the previous version of the Kuga (sold new from 2012 to 2020), with petrol or diesel engines available. Lastly, two versions of the Mustang Mach-E have 4WD.

Ford Mustang Mach-E

Are Ford SUV models good off-road?

Even with four-wheel drive (4WD), Ford’s SUV models are somewhat limited in their ability to cruise over rough and muddy terrain. All 4WD models of the EcoSport, Kuga and Mustang Mach-E will cope reasonably well with a muddy car park or a rough farm track, so long as you have the appropriate tyres fitted. But their relatively low ground clearance means they won’t be able to take you into the wilderness in the way that, say, a Range Rover Evoque could.

The main advantage of 4WD Ford SUVs over two-wheel-drive models is the extra reassurance they offer in wet weather and slippery conditions – the extra pair of driven wheels can also be useful if you need to tow a trailer or caravan.

Ford Kuga

Are there any sporty Ford SUV models?

Fords in general often feel fun to drive compared with many of their rival cars, but if you want to add an extra turn of speed to the experience, you have a couple of options.

First, the Puma ST. It has the same petrol engine as the Fiesta ST hot hatch (which makes a fantastic, growly noise) and can accelerate from zero to  62mph in just 6.7 seconds. It’s brilliant fun to drive, yet it’s just as practical as any other Puma model.

Then there’s the Mustang Mach-E GT. It’s very powerful and can accelerate from from zero to 62mph faster than some Porsche sports cars.

Ford Puma ST

Ford SUV models in summary

Ford EcoSport

The smallest and most affordable Ford SUV may be little but it’s spacious and practical enough to work as a family car if you have younger kids. It’s pleasant to drive, comes with a selection of efficient engines and is relatively affordable.

Ford Puma

The Puma is larger than the EcoSport but it’s still a compact SUV. That said, it’s impressively spacious for its size, particularly in the boot. There’s also enough room for four adults to travel together and the Puma feels great to drive, especially the sporty Puma ST model.

Ford Kuga

In its passenger space and practicality, the latest version of the Kuga (sold new since 2020) is pretty much bang-on average for a midsize SUV, so it’ll serve most families very well. What makes it stand out, though, is how agile yet comfortable it feels on the road – it’s really very enjoyable to drive.

Ford Mustang Mach-E

The Mustang Mach-E is a pure-electric SUV that has some of the look and feel of the famous Ford Mustang sports car (hence the Mustang name). Some models have a battery range of up to 372 miles, which is among the longest ranges of any electric car available in the UK. 

Ford Edge

Sold new between 2016 and 2019, the Edge is the largest Ford SUV. It has a huge boot, lots of rear legroom and four-wheel drive as standard. It’s big and comfortable and gives you a lot of car for your money.

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