Ford has released pictures of its new Focus Econetic which the company says will set tough new standards for family hatchbacks.
The new eco model for 2012 debuts next week at the Amsterdam motor show, and is capable of 80mpg.
The latest Focus is powered by Ford's 1.6-litre Duratorq TDCI diesel engine, which has been given a stringent eco makeover with a new injection system, added friction-reduction technology and a new turbocharger.
The 104bhp engine is mated to a six-speed gearbox and the Econetic is claimed by Ford to be capable of 80mpg and emissions of less than 95g/km CO2. Highly impressive figures for a car of its size which doesn't employ hybrid electric technology.
The Focus does use a stop-start system and regenerative charging to claw back wasted energy from braking as well as active aerodynamics in the front of the car. That system closes off the front vents when they're not needed - worth a 2 percent saving in emissions, says Ford.
Other aero tweaks cut down on drag – special alloy wheels are designed to disturb the air as little as possible, whilst the underside of the car has been made smooth and flat to improve airflow.
The car goes on sale here in January 2012 - Autoblog spoke to Ford UK and whilst they were cagey on pricing so far ahead of the car going on sale, it is expected to sell for around £18,000.
The company doesn't think the limits of the fossil fuel-powered car are being reached, either – so we can expect to see even more impressive numbers from the Blue Oval soon. For now, though, rivals can consider the gauntlet thrown down.