What's the used Ford Puma hatchback like?
If you're after transportation, buy a Ford Puma, not a Puma wild cat. As spectacular as they are, they can’t carry much luggage, they can’t do motorway speeds and there’s always the looming possibility that they’ll eat you.
The Ford Puma is devoid of these shortcomings and, not only would we recommend it over the wild cat of the same name, but we’d choose this small SUV over all of its used car rivals.
For starters, we love its simple yet successful engine range. There’s no weak spot, with your options being a 123bhp or 153bhp 1.0-litre petrol engine – badged Ecoboost 125 and 155 respectively. You can choose between a six-speed manual gearbox and a seven-speed automatic gearbox as well.
The 123bhp Puma is no slouch. In our tests, it completed the 0-60mph sprint in a respectable 9.6sec. The engine pulls reasonably well from low revs and maintains cruising speed effortlessly, meaning many buyers won’t feel the need to spring for the 153bhp unit. We believe you’ll appreciate its extra poke, though. The 153bhp engine allows for 0-60mph in 8.5sec.
You’ll see the vast majority of Pumas have the letters ‘mHEV’ in their names. This signifies they have mild hybrid electrical assistance for a small boost in power and fuel economy.
Of course, if you want the utmost grunt (and driving thrills) from your Puma, you could always buy a used Ford Puma ST. It has a 197bhp 1.5-litre engine and a 0-62mph time of 6.7sec. A 168bhp 1.0-litre mild-hybrid option has recently joined the range as well.
In bends, the Puma delights – mechanically basing the model on the fun-to-drive Ford Fiesta has certainly paid off. By small SUV standards, it’s very nimble and you’ll notice this agility whether you’re merely scooting around a roundabout or flying down your favourite country lane.
To experience the Puma at its most entertaining (bar the full-fat ST), you'll want an ST-Line version, because this gets sports suspension to help reduce body lean when cornering. Although it provides a noticeable improvement over the entry-level Titanium, even that version darts into bends more eagerly than most of the competition.
The previously mentioned Titanium trim isn’t exactly sparse on kit. It has 17in alloy wheels, automatic lights and wipers, automatic air conditioning, heated door mirrors and rear parking sensors. ST-Line swaps the conventional instrument dials behind the steering wheel for a 12.3in digital display. It also gets more supportive seats.
ST-Line X has climate control and it also brings bigger 18in alloys for an even sportier look, along with privacy glass, part-leather seats and a great-sounding B&O sound system. Range-topping ST-Line Vignale gets full leather seats (heated in the front), a heated leather steering wheel and keyless entry.
In the Puma, you don't sit quite as far above the road as you do in the T-Roc, but you are much higher up than in some other small SUVs, including the Hyundai Bayon and Kamiq.
Visibility out of the back of the Puma isn’t brilliant – blame the rising window line and the chunky rear pillars for that – and interior quality isn't on a par with some premium rivals, such as the Audi Q2, but there's still plenty to like. All the controls are logically laid out and easy to use, plus there are some soft-touch materials dotted around the place.
All Pumas come with an 8.0in touchscreen infotainment system, with DAB radio, Bluetooth, built-in sat-nav and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring (so you can use your phone apps on the car's screen).
Although the Puma isn’t quite as spacious as a Kamiq or T-Roc, you can still fit a couple of six-footers quite comfortably in the back.
You can fit six carry-on suitcases in the Puma's main boot compartment – one fewer than you’ll squeeze into a Kamiq or T-Roc. The Puma has a trick up its sleeve, though: if you lift up its boot floor, you’ll find a large well under it that can swallow two more cases.
What used Ford Puma hatchback will I get for my budget?
Some Pumas – 2020-2021 Titanium cars featuring the 123bhp engine – dip below £13,000, as long as you don’t mind 70,000-plus miles on the clock or previous damage.
A budget of £15,000 shows you a mix of Titanium and ST-Line cars (with less mileage), while £17,000 gets you the 153bhp engine or a 2022 model.
Check the value of a used Ford Puma with What Car? Valuations
How much does it cost to run a Ford Puma hatchback?
According to the latest WLTP tests, the 1.0 Hybrid mHEV 125 and 155 both return the same average fuel consumption figure of 50.4mpg. The 1.0 Ecoboost non-hybrid returns 46.3mpg. The ST returns an average 41.5mpg.
Road tax (VED)
All Pumas will have been registered after April 2017 and, therefore, road tax will be the current £180 per year, applicable to all petrol cars (£170 per year for hybrid cars).
Servicing and Insurance
Ford offers competitive servicing prices and various servicing plans, which can be paid for by monthly direct debit. There’s also cheaper Ford Motorcraft servicing for examples that are outside of the manufacturer's warranty period; it costs £159.
Insurance groups range from 14 to 19, depending on trim. Euro NCAP awarded the standard Puma five stars (out of five) for safety, although a closer look at the scores reveals that the T-Roc is fractionally better at protecting child and adult occupants in a crash. Meanwhile, to keep would-be thieves at bay, the ST comes with a Thatcham category one alarm and immobiliser.
Which used Ford Puma hatchback should I buy?
The 1.0 Ecoboost mHEV 155 offers sprightly performance, yet it’s just as good on fuel as its lower-powered mild hybrid sibling, so it’s the one we’d go for. Our favourite trim is ST-Line, because, although Titanium isn’t lacking, it’s sharper handling and increased level of kit grant it our vote.
Our favourite Ford Puma: 1.0 Ecoboost mHEV 155 ST-Line X
What alternatives should I consider to a used Ford Puma hatchback?
The Audi Q2 is a high-quality small SUV with sharp looks and a very impressive interior. It feels a cut above thanks to its softer interior plastics, tactile knobs and a great infotainment system. It drives well, too, and is both comfortable and practical, but it’ll cost more to buy and run than the Ford Puma.
The Skoda Kamiq is great value and one of the nicest to drive, as well as being one of the most spacious. It has more rear leg room than the Puma, and its interior quality impresses.With punchy engines and plenty of standard kit on offer it’s easy to recommend a used Kamiq.
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