Ford Motor Corp. on Tuesday said its compact Focus model remains the best-selling vehicle in the world, with registrations up 18 percent in the first quarter of 2013 compared to the same period last year.
The automaker, citing data from researcher R.L. Polk & Co., said 288,724 Focus vehicles were registered in the quarter ending March 31 – the most recent figures available. China and Brazil fueled the growth with registration in the Asian country reaching 104,065 units – up 153 percent compared to the first quarter of 2012; while in Brazil demand rose 18 percent to 7,227 vehicles registered during the period.
Built by Ford from 1998, the U.S. based automaker begun sales of the Focus to Europe in July 1998 and in North America during 1999 for the 2000 model year.
In Europe, South America, North America and South Africa, the Focus replaced the various versions of the Ford Escort and Ford Laser sold in those markets. At this moment the automaker builds the compact car in nine factories globally, giving Ford capacity to build more than two Focus vehicles every minute.
The company builds 5 variants including a sedan, hatchback, wagon, an electric-powered model and the high-performance Focus ST and RS.
Ford has said the Focus overtook Toyota Motor Corp.’s Corolla compact last year, which the Japanese automaker disputed.