ford kuga

The first official indicator of its arrival here is out – the Ford Kuga will be making its market debut here in Malaysia sometime at the end of the second quarter, according to the company. The fresh-faced SUV is set to take over from the ageing second-generation Escape in the Blue Oval lineup locally. Over in the US, the Kuga is badged as an Escape.

The Valencia, Spain-built offering will arrive boasting an impressive array of new technologies and enhanced features, including Intelligent All-Wheel Drive. No mention of specification as yet, but it has been indicated that the Kuga destined here will wear a 1.6 litre EcoBoost turbocharged engine, though it hasn’t yet been ascertained if it’ll be a 150 PS or 180 PS version.

The mill will be paired to a six-speed SelectShift auto transmission, which features revised gear ratios and a new torque converter for improved driving feel and smoother shifts. Highlights include a segment-first hands-free tailgate, in which simply sweeping a foot under the rear bumper allows the opening or closing of the rear tailgate automatically.

The five-star rated (both Euro NCAP and ANCAP) Ford Kuga also features Active City Stop, Active Grille Shutters and the Ford SYNC system on its tech list, but exactly just what’s to be found on the Malaysian-bound variant will come about when it gets closer to the launch.

UPDATE: Looks like pre-orders are open as we have sighted a Ford dealer listing the Ford Kuga on for RM163k, with a 1.6L EcoBoost engine.