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Old 09-02-2009   #1 (permalink)
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Ford focus named a top campus car as consumers seek back-to-school values

Parents can appreciate safety improvements, and all Focus models now feature four-wheel ABS brakes and AdvanceTrac® with ESC (Electronic Stability Control) as standard equipment. The systems work together, using sophisticated sensors to help keep the car under control in extreme conditions. Also standard on Focus SE, SES and SEL trim levels is a perimeter alarm system to discourage vehicle theft and tampering – often a significant problem on high school and college campuses alike.

To help encourage safer driving among younger customers – or roommates borrowing the car, Focus adds the MyKey system. The vehicle key can be programmed through the message center to incorporate features such as:

* Persistent Belt-Minder chime
* Limited vehicle top speed of 80 mph
* Traction control system that limits tire spin and that cannot be deactivated
* Audio system mute until safety belts are fastened; volume then limited to 44 percent of maximum system volume
* A speed alert chime at 45, 55 or 65 mph

Ford's industry-exclusive SYNC hands-free technology is standard on the SES/SEL series and optional on SE. SYNC is a fully integrated in-vehicle, voice-activated communications and entertainment system allowing customers to use their digital media players, mobile phones and other devices. New this year, SYNC with Traffic, Directions & Information provides simple hands-free access to personalized traffic reports, precise turn-by-turn driving directions and up-to-date information including business listings, news, sports and weather.

When coupled with a compatible phone, SYNC can even receive and respond to text messages using simple voice commands. And SYNC also comes with the ability to call 911 in the event of an accident – an important safety advance built in to SYNC that requires no subscription fees, unlike some competitive systems.

SYNC can also help drivers stay focused and keep both hands on the steering wheel. A 2003 Ford study showed much higher levels of distraction among drivers completing manual and/or visual tasks compared with those using a hands-free, voice-activated interface. More telling was evidence that teens have trouble multitasking, and are four times more distracted than adult drivers when using a cell phone while driving. Hands-free technology can help driving remain the driver's top priority.

For road trip duties, Focus combines the best of both worlds. A spacious 13.8-cubic-foot trunk stores all the goods four people need for extended travel. And with an EPA-estimated 35 mpg highway for the standard five-speed manual (34 mpg highway with the automatic), Focus can turn a small pool of gas money into a serious long-distance journey.

And now through Sept. 30, Ford is helping make Focus an even better value: First-time vehicle buyers can get a dollar-for-dollar match, up to $500, on their down payment when they purchase a new Focus. Just visit a local Ford dealer for full details.
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