The 2013 Ford Kuga will go on sale in the first quarter of 2013 with a choice of turbocharged petrol and diesel models.
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Ford Australia is showing the new-generation Ford Kuga at the 2012 Sydney motor show that starts today, though it is providing few details of a vehicle that must become a crucial player in the popular SUV market.

The local car maker isn’t even confirming the exact specifications of the two initial launch engines, though CarAdvice understands the petrol will be a 1.6-litre turbocharged EcoBoost four-cylinder that generates 129kW of power.

The TDCi turbo diesel will be a 120kW four-cylinder that, like the turbo petrol, can be matched to a six-speed manual or auto, with power distributed to either the front wheels or all wheels depending on variant.

A 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol four-cylinder, closely related to the unit used in the Ford Falcon EcoBoost and Ford Focus ST hot-hatch, is set to follow a few months further down the track.

The new Ford Kuga will replace its current namesake, which was introduced locally in February years after first going on sale in Europe.

The 2013 model will have a greater chance of sales success with a bigger line-up than the single variant of the current Kuga, which was introduced belatedly in February this year.

Ford Australia is also certain to apply a more competitive price to the Ford Kuga, which is expensive currently at a starting point of $38,990 in a segment where the dominant players – such as the Toyota RAV4, Nissan X-Trail and Mazda CX-5 – that start from below $30,000.

The company says it will confirm local pricing and specifications closer to the Kuga's launch.

The Ford Kuga will be the first of a new range of SUVs the local car maker will have from 2013 to add to the locally built Territory, followed by the Fiesta-based Ford EcoSport in early 2014 and the Ranger-based seven-seater SUV that has yet to be officially confirmed.