Ford EcoSport is the company’s latest bid in the Indian auto industry to tap a bigger market share. And to an extent this compact crossover has positioned the carmaker amongst the top-notch automotive manufacturers in the country. Recognized as the sophisticated, young and urban crossover, the EcoSport comes loaded with several class leading features at an affordable price tag. With great city and highway driving capabilities, this sub-four metre SUV is an exemplary product from the company showcasing its ability to manufacture a low cost, efficient and aesthetic car for the buyers. This dynamic mini SUV gets all what a buyer would expect in his/her car and that is the reason why it competes not only with utility cars like Renault Duster, Nissan Terrano and Maruti Ertiga, but also paces with premium hatchbacks and sedans like Hyundai i20, Maruti Swift Dzire and Honda Amaze.
The design and shape of this car has been its USP in the Indian market. What makes it modern and appealing car is the distinctive front stance composed of the halogen headlights, attractive grilles, fog lights, raised hood and sleek windshield. Even the interiors too are impressive with good looking mating, decent plastic quality and premium leather upholstery.
At a nominal price tag, Ford has tried its level best to make it an advanced vehicle with a variety of features installed for comfort, convenience and safety. The award winning 1.0 EcoBoost engine introduced in this car is no doubt a great discovery by Ford. The entire engine line-up of this SUV is technically superior to its rivals that allows it deliver high performance along with a great fuel efficiency.Exteriors
Ford EcoSport is a fine presentation of sporty exteriors with neat and symmetric profile. The company has not left any stone unturned to make it look like a premium crossover. The front fascia of this mini crossover looks immaculate with the octagonal chrome radiator grille. Moreover, the upper grille of the car gets the company’s badge at the centre, and the halogen headlamps placed at the sides of upper grille look quite fascinating. For proper visibility, fog lamps are embedded in the front bumper and the circular chrome lining across it makes the profile cosmetically more adorable.
The hood is quite tough and slightly flattened with curved molding at the edges. The front windshield is made of tough laminated glass and also gets two wipers. At the sides too, the exteriors are stunning with the giant alloy wheels, big bulges at the wheel arches and engraved creases at the door bottom. The grace of the side profile is further raised by the voguish ORVMs, windows and the blackened B-pillar. In addition, the roof lines on the top add sophistication and sportiness to the car.
Ford’s futuristic design approach continues even at the rear profile that gets side-opening tailgate carrying a spare wheel fixed appropriately in tough bracket. The triangular tail lamp cluster of this car looks quite fresh in the Ford’s line-up. Moreover, the rear windshield gets black additions at the sides and also comes equipped with rear window wiper & washer. The black plastic cladding that runs across the entire profile of this car gives it a bold crossover appearance. Amazingly, this sub-4 meter car is 31mm longer than Ford Fiesta. In addition, it gets ground clearance of 200mm that makes it compatible to go through tough terrains with ease. The water wading capability of 550mm is another great advantage for off-roading enthusiasts. Ford EcoSport is available in seven exciting colours options that include – Diamond White, Panther Black, Sea Grey, Chill Metallic, Moondust Silver, Kinetic Blue and Mars Red.Interiors
The sportiness and youthful charm is carried over on the interiors too that look much similar to the Fiesta’s. The dash-board of this SUV is neatly designed and is given a futuristic shape. Made of premium Beige & Black plastics, it looks elegant and hosts multiple controls, centre console and instrument cluster. Chrome inserts can be seen at the gearbox panel while silver trims are noticeable at centre console, instrument cluster, steering wheel and AC vents.
The entry level trims get quality fabric mating, while the top end variant comes with fine quality leather upholstery. Driver’s seat is positioned perfectly to avail maximum road visibility. What adds more fun to drive this vehicle is the adjustable seat and tilt & telescoping steering wheel. The Music system is genuinely good and the new MID with Microsoft SYNC makes it quite a handy one.
The cabin might look compact from outside, but its spacious enough to accommodate five passengers. Leg-room and head-room are adequate for a tall person, however, for 3 passengers the rear seat shoulder width is troublesome. Both front and the rear seats are offered with adjustable headrests that ensure comfort, though centre rear armrest is missing in the car.
Despite compact dimensions, Ford has packaged the car so well that the EcoSport offers a plenty of storage areas inside the cabin. There are a total 20 storage compartments offered inside the car including 3 bottle holders, dual-level glove box, slide-out drawer under the front seat, two door pockets at the rear of front seats and sunglass & umbrella holders. Moreover, the door inners not only serve as arm-rest for the passengers sitting on the sides, but also offer space to hold 500 ml bottles. 362 litres of boot space is though not as big as its rivals, but this can be extended up to 705-litres by folding the rear seats.Engine and Transmission
The compact crossover, Ford EcoSport is available in varied engine options for the car buyers. The petrol trims are offered in efficient 1.0-Litre and 1.5 Litre powertrain options. The award winning 1.0 Litre 3-cylinder EcoBoost petrol engine of this car is potent enough to produce a peak power of 123.4bhp at 6000 RPM and peak torque of 170Nm at 1400-4500 RPM, while the other 1.5 Litre4-cylinder mill featuring the Twin Independent Variable Camshaft Timing (Ti-VCT) churns out a peak power of 110bhp at 6300 RPM and 140Nm at 4400 RPM. Both these petrol engines are mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. But for the 1.5 Litre engine buyers, there is an additional 6-speed automatic transmission trim available for purchase.
The diesel version of the car features a 1.5 Litre 4-cylinder DV5 engine that produces a maximum power output of 89.9bhp at 3750 RPM and peak torque of 204Nm at 2000-2750 RPM. Both the petrol and diesel powertrains are intelligently developed keeping both the fuel efficiency and performance aspects in mind.Performance and Handling
The EcoSport can be referred as an ideal car in performance and handling aspects. All of its powertrains deliver linear output on road. The 1.0 Litre EcoBoost performs like a 4-pot petrol engine on the highways, although it only has 3-cylinders. When the engine is on idle stage no vibrations are felt inside, however at low RPMs turbo-lag can be sensed. Like the 1.0 Litre sibling, the 1.5 Litre petrol mill performs well on road. There is no turbo-lag and the power transmitting is linear. 4-cylinder under the hood is an advantage for the 1.5 petrol mill as it enables it to drive smoothly even at low RPMs. The 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine is the same powering Fiesta in India, therefore, it's already a proven and potent one. The throttle response is an appreciable aspect of this in-line diesel mill.
The EcoSport drivers will applaud its superior acceleration capabilities. The 1.0 LitreEcoBoost engine clocks speed range of 0-100 kmph in just 10.8 seconds with the top speed being 190kmph, whereas, the 1.5 Litre Ti-VCT petrol engine with AT crosses speed range of 0–100 kmph in 13.25 seconds, reaching top speed of 168kmph. Besides this, the 1.5 Litre DV5 diesel engine powered version has potential to cross speed range of 0 – 100kmph in just 13.2 seconds with its top speed being 175kmph.Braking System
Ford EcoSport has an efficient braking system that enables the driver to control it effortlessly in all the braking situations. For the advanced braking, the car has been offered with the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) along with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD). Added to this, the disc brakes are responsible for further enhancement in braking efficiency. Braking system is further assisted by the emergency brake warning feature installed in the car. Besides this, the automatic transmission variant of this SUV gets additional terrain tackling skills with features like Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) and Hill Hold Control.Mileage (City & Highway)
Considering the sky touching fuel prices, the company has poised the EcoSport with commendable fuel efficiency capabilities. Its 1.0 litre EcoBoost petrol engine delivers an outstanding mileage of 14-15kmpl in city and 18.88kmpl on highways. Whereas, the 1.5-litre petrol motor returns 12-13kmpl in city and 15.8kmpl on highways. The other 1.5-Litre diesel engine of this SUV returns an outstanding mileage of 17-19kmpl in city conditions and 22.7kmpl on highways.Safety features
Safety is one of the most important factors when it comes to buying a car. Ford has gone with the preferences of car buyers and loaded the EcoSport with many advanced safety features. It gets first-in-class six airbags that includes - Driver & Passenger, Side and Curtain Airbags. Efficiency of disc brakes on all four wheels is further enhanced by the advanced Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Electronic Stability Control (ESC), Traction Control System (TCS), Hill Assist (HLA) and Emergency Assist.
Other than this, safety features like Emergency Brake Hazard Warning and ISOFIX are boon to passenger safety. To park the vehicle with ease, the company has added rear parking sensors. Other security features of the Ford EcoSport include Remote Central Locking with Flip Key, Smart Keyless Entry, Immobilizer System, Electronic Swing Gate Release and Locking wheel nut for spare wheel.Verdict
Ford EcoSport is a great SUV designed for those who are in search for crossover adventure at an affordable price tag. Its incomparable features, high-tech specifications, head-turning looks and class leading interiors make it a true value for money car. These multiple qualities are a big reason why this compact crossover has secured high number of sales since its launch in the market. Though it's not an off-road machine, it's a capable urban SUV with some off-roading skills.
All the petrol and diesel engines are tuned to offer good power and impressive fuel efficiency. One thing that lacks there in this compact SUV is the spaciousness when compared to its rivals. However, it can accommodate five adults quite comfortably. Although, it is built on a sedan platform, the body roll is generously controlled. In a nut shell, with commendable capabilities, the EcoSport is a surely a fortune maker for the company.Competition
The closest competitors of the Ford EcoSport are the Renault Duster and Nissan Terrano, which too are equally good products. Whereas, the EcoSport scores high in areas like fuel efficiency, price tag and looks, the Duster has the ride quality and spaciousness. In terms of power, the EcoSport's 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine churns out more power than the Duster's petrol mill, but when it comes to a more powerful diesel vehicle between the two, the Duster has a competitive edge.
Prior to the EcoSport launch, the Duster secured high number sales being the first to lead the compact SUV segment in India. Its build quality with some really good features and drivability helped the car do great in terms of sales, but now with EcoSport offered at a low cost, it's facing a stiff competition.
Nissan Terrano is the latest rival of the Ford EcoSport. Though it is the most expensive of all three, it haspotential to give a tough competition to the EcoSport. What goes against the Terrano is its price which is even higher than the Duster despite sharing the same platform, design and features.Pros
Attractive design, Fuel efficient, powerful engine line-up, Comfortable cabinCons
Inadequate rear seat shoulder space for three passengers