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Old 10-23-2002, 03:58   #1 (permalink)
Mr. Embargo
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Embargoland
Posts: 3,745
Sportka Joins Ford Ka Range

Ford’s iconic Ka line-up gets an exciting boost from the new Sportka, complementing all the fun and pleasure of Ka motoring with enhanced performance and greater agility.

The natural step in the evolution of the Ka brand along with the funky Streetka roadster, the Sportka is essentially a marriage of the Ka’s hatchback and drive credentials, the Streetka’s striking styling and a new sporty performance engine. The result – the coolest Ka you can buy.

Sportka sits on a modified Ka chassis that has been tuned for even sportier steering and handling dynamics. The suspension has been lowered and stiffened with improved toe and camber control, backed up by more powerful brakes and revised steering for pin-sharp response.

It is powered by a new 1.6-litre Duratec engine that develops a lusty 95PS at 5,500 rpm and 135 Nm at 4,250 rpm. Built in South Africa, the 8-valve engine has been designed to deliver muscular mid-range response, enhancing the Ka’s urban agility and motorway overtaking capabilities. A close-ratio five speed manual gearbox completes the mechanical upgrade.

Sportka matches its effervescent performance with equally snappy styling. Sharing much of the design DNA of the Streetka, the Sportka’s flared wheel arches, lowered ride height and new six-spoke 16 inch alloy wheels shod with low-profile tyres give the Sportka a squat and purposeful stance.

Sportka’s visage closely resembles that of the Streetka, sharing the roadster’s bespoke headlamp units and bold, body-coloured front bumper with integrated foglamps. At the rear, the tailgate wears a sporty spoiler that blends into the wrap-around rear bumper, itself punctuated by a centrally positioned circular reversing light and two rear reflectors – again, distinctive Streetka styling clues. Sportka will be available in unique ‘Imperial Blue’ paintwork as well as other sporty colours from the standard Ka range.

The distinctive interior is a stylish combination of Ka and Streetka. Driver and front passenger are gripped by supportive sports seats trimmed in a new keyed fabric, that harks back to Ford’s traditional motorsport blue. A leather trimmed version will also be available. The doors and dashboard are finished in ebony black and this colour theme even extends to the new instruments that feature black dials with white, backlit numerals.

Jewel-like touches of aluminium highlight the cabin. The gear lever is topped with the Puma-inspired machined aluminium ball, the oval clock is framed in aluminium and the arms of the leather-bound steering wheel are braceletted with aluminium bands.

“We expect the Sportka’s new-found muscle, heightened dynamics and edgy look to appeal to a new group of Ka customers – those drivers that want their style backed up with a real performance punch. They won't be disappointed,” said Paul Thomas, managing director, Ford Motor Company Limited.
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