Ford Kuga drops diesel option due to falling sales

Ford Kuga drops diesel option due to falling sales

Ford has axed diesel engine options for the Kuga mid-sized SUV, claiming demand has shifted to petrol and hybrid powertrains. 

The Kuga is the second Ford model to lose its diesel engine in recent years, after the diesel Fiesta was dropped in 2020. 

It was previously available with a choice of a 1.5- or 2.0-litre Ecoblue diesel engines, producing up to 187bhp. The Kuga now instead offers full-hybrid and plug-in options alongside Ford’s 1.5-litre Ecoboost petrol engine. 

“The petrol, full-hybrid and petrol plug-in are the future and where the demand is,” a Ford spokesperson told Autocar. “This move simplifies Kuga’s powertrain line-up to help customers understand and navigate increasing electrified engine options.”

Just 10% of Kuga sales were diesel, whereas hybrid and petrol options are increasingly popular choices.

The change means the only Ford passenger car to retain a diesel engine is the Focus, while the Fiesta, Ecosport, Puma, Kuga, Mondeo, S-Max and Galaxy use either petrol or hybrid powertrains. 

Other manufacturers have also removed diesel options from sale. Seat axed diesel variants of the Ibiza and Arona in 2020, and Volvo pulled the diesel XC40 and S90. 

Diesel models have fallen out of favour with UK buyers to the extent that just 5.1% of car registrations in November 2021 were oil-burners, while electrified purchases continue to rise. Diesel models had held a 50% market share as recently as 2014. 

Plug-in hybrid (PHEV) registrations rose to 39.7% year on year, while battery-electric models (BEVs) recorded a 110% increase.