Ford World Rally Team driver Jari-Matti Latvala set four world speed records* in a Focus 1.0-litre EcoBoost road car during a two-day event in France, during which 16 new records* were created.
The 27-year-old Finn, who spearheads Ford’s challenge in the FIA World Rally Championship, was part of a 12-man team which set 16 Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) speed world records* over distances ranging from 1km (0.6 miles) to 4104.7km (2550.5 miles).
Latvala joined 11 drivers, including eight journalists from France and the United States, for the record attempt at the CERAM test circuit in Mortefontaine, France. They drove three 125PS Focus 1.0-litre EcoBoost cars, identical to those sold in Ford dealerships throughout Europe.
Latvala set the ‘sub-1.0-litre class’ world records* for times recorded covering 1km and 1 mile from both a standing start and a flying start. He also drove the opening leg of a 24-hour timed session, during which new records* were set for the highest average speed over six, 12 and 24 hours and 500 miles, 1000km and 1000 miles.
“This little engine punches way above its weight when it comes to performance,” said Latvala, whose regular ride is a 304PS Ford Fiesta RS World Rally Car. “The records prove the Focus 1.0-litre EcoBoost can be lots of fun – as well as a very frugal car.”
To be eligible, each car was required to be run-in under the supervision of an official FFSA (Fédération Française du Sport Automobile) steward, after being selected from the Ford manufacturing facility in Saarlouis, Germany.
The highest average speed recorded was 191.056 km/h (118.716 mph) during the setting of the world record for the highest average speed over one hour*.
The 125 PS Focus 1.0-litre EcoBoost is capable of 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) acceleration in 11.3 seconds and a top speed of 193 km/h (120 mph). It delivers fuel efficiency of 5.0 l/100 km (56.5 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 114 g/km**.
The full list of Latvala’s records is as follows*:
RECORD (AVERAGE SPEED)
Standing start 1 kilometre (113.522km/h)
Standing start 1 mile (79.402mph)
Flying start 1 kilometre (176.168km/h)
Flying start 1 mile (108.548mph)
Highest average speed over 1000 km (164.361km/h)
Highest average speed over 500 miles (102.656mph)
Highest average speed over 1000 miles (103.357mph)
Highest average speed over 6 hours (165.555km/h)
Highest average speed over 12 hours (166.784km/h)
Highest average speed over 24 hours (171.029km/h)
* All records are subject to Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) homologation in Category B (series production cars), Group 1 (4-stroke engine), Class 5 (with engines of between 850-1000cc).
**All fuel consumption and CO2 emissions figures in g/km are from officially approved tests in accordance with EC Directive 93/116/EC. Fuel economy figures quoted are based on the European Fuel Economy Directive EU 80/1268/EEC and will differ from fuel economy drive cycle results in other regions of the world.