Ford has embraced electrification and it appears the company is working on a hybrid version of the Puma ST.
Caught undergoing testing on the Nürburgring, the model doesn’t look terribly special at first glance as it appears identical to the standard crossover. However, keen-eyed observers will notice a yellow sticker on the rear window and this indicates the car is equipped with a hybrid powertrain.
While this seems unusual as the Puma ST is barely a year old, it actually makes a lot of sense as the crossover will be competing in the FIA World Rally Championship next year. Since the series is going hybrid, Ford is apparently taking the road-going model along for the journey.
Little is known about the powertrain at this point, but Ford introduced a Puma Rally1 prototype at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. It featured a plug-in hybrid powertrain that consisted of a turbocharged 1.6-liter engine, an electric motor and a 3.9 kWh battery pack.
That being said, the road-going model will likely adopt a mild-hybrid setup. While details are hazy, the current Puma ST has a 1.5-liter EcoBoost three-cylinder engine that develops 197 hp (147 kW / 200 PS) and 236 lb-ft (320 Nm) of torque. It’s connected to a six-speed manual transmission, which enables the model to accelerate from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 6.7 seconds and onto a top speed of 137 mph (220 km/h).
While this particular model is believed to be a mild-hybrid, a plug-in hybrid variant is possible in the future as Ford has previously said “100% of its passenger vehicle range in Europe will be zero-emissions capable, all-electric or plug-in hybrid,” by mid-2026. That’s still a ways off and it appears the Puma ST Hybrid will be a step in that direction.
Picture credits: CarPix for CarScoops