2015 Ford Figo Full-Size Sedan – Reasons why it’s testing in India

In India, the compact sedan segment is killing it. This segment is comprehensively outdoing the C1 segment that plays host to the likes of the Ford Classic, the Toyota Etios, the Mahindra Verito and the Chevrolet Sail. So, when you see car makers dumping the C1 segment for a presence in the compact sedan segment, it doesn’t come as a surprise at all.

2015 Ford Ka+ Full-Size Sedan Spotted Testing in India
2015 Ford Ka+ Full-Size Sedan Spotted Testing in India

After all, giving what the market wants is how a business gets profitable. Ford India will be doing a similar thing in the coming months, as it pulls the plug on the Classic sedan, and replace it with the 2015 Figo based compact sedan. But why is the American automaker testing the Ka+ on Indian roads? Here are some answers.

2015 Ford Ka+ (Figo based) sedan
Brazil-spec 2015 Ford Ka+ Sedan that measures 4.254 meters in length.

Before we get into the hows and whys of the Ka+, we’ll jump into a brief background here. The Ka+ measures 4,254 mm in length because it’s built for Brazil, a country whose government doesn’t subsidize sub-4 meter compact cars. For India though, Ford will be cutting the Ka+ sedan to size, to make for a sub-4 meter length. Now, for the reasons.

2015 Ford Figo Compact Sedan Front
The similarly styled sub-4 meter 2015 Ford Figo compact sedan that’ll India will soon get.

1. Research and development improves the breed. Months ago, Ford India imported the Ka+ sedan into India from Brazil, in order to test the car on roads here. The car’s underpinnings have many things common with the 2015 Figo based compact sedan. The car that has been spotted on test is from the lot that has been imported into India. Why, it even features the 1.5 liter Ti-VCT petrol motor, a complete no-no on a sub-4 meter offering. And a car being spotted on Indian roads doesn’t necessarily have to hit the market here.

Spyshots of the 2015 Ford Figo twins testing in India

2015 Ford Figo Compact Sedan Rear
Notice the stubbier boot, a change necessitated to duck under the 4 meter length that’s mandated by excise duty considerations.

2. The export market is where the money is. While the sub-4 meter sedan class is big in India, car buyers in other emerging markets want their sedans with full-size boots. As Ford will soon begin manufacturing the 2015 Figo hatchback and compact sedan at the spanking new Sanand factory, the Ka+ is expected to be an export-only addition to the production line, a car that is aimed at bringing in export revenues from markets in Africa and the Middle East.

Engine details of 2015 Figo

Spyshot courtesy Team-BHP