A hybrid Ford Puma ST could be on the way

Electrified hot crossover hinted at in official video.

Ford Puma ST
Ford Puma ST

Ford has hinted that a hybrid Puma ST is on the way, marking the first time the firm has offered an electrified ST model.

The teaser came as part of an official video released last week to celebrate the one millionth car leaving Ford’s Craiova factory in Romania.

In the video, Ford’s new Puma rally car – which uses a petrol-electric powertrain – can be seen driving and drifting around the factory grounds.

However, in one scene, spotted by Autocar magazine around the 1m 48s mark, the camera lingers on a door that says ‘top secret’ with the ST logo beneath it. Through the windows, electric sparks can be seen.

Other than the Ecosport crossover, which doesn’t have an ST variant, the Puma is the only vehicle made at the Craiova plant. This appears to lend weight to rumours that a hybrid Puma ST is coming, which would make sense given the rally car uses a similar unit.

These rumours first surfaced after a Ford Puma was seen lapping the Nurburgring in Germany on manufacturer test days. Although it wore the body work of a regular Puma in ST Line trim, it was using the larger ST alloy wheels and brakes.

Ford Puma ST
(Ford)

A yellow sticker on the back of the vehicle meant that it was running a hybrid powertrain.

Observers say there was no charging port visible, meaning the Puma ST hybrid would likely not be a plug-in model, instead replenishing its batteries through regenerative braking.

The existing Puma ST uses a 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine that makes 197bhp, so it’s likely that the addition of an electric motor would push this beyond 200bhp.

However, without the option to plug in, a performance hybrid would likely use a fairly small battery with limited electric-only range. Instead, the motor’s purpose would likely be to simply add a little extra punch under acceleration.

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