The Ford Kuga is competitive in some areas, but there are a number of better options for the money, notably the excellent Mazda CX-5read the full model review
ST-Line models are the sporty option so get a bodykit, sports suspension, 18in wheels, black detailing for the outside and floor mats with red piping. It also has a self-parking system that not only brings front and rear parking sensors but means the Kuga can steer itself into a parking spot. It's too pricey to recommend, though.
The entry-level diesel engine may be small in size, but it has enough grunt for most people and emits less CO2 than any other model in the range. It's our preferred choice for company car drivers but, if you regularly have a full car, consider the gutsier 2.0 TDCi 150.