Ford Ecosport Hatchback First Look Review

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Ford Ecosport Overview

It wouldn’t be wrong to say the EcoSport charted new history for Ford in India. Back in 2013, the compact SUV segment was barely in existence and the EcoSport was quick to gain immense popularity. It wasn’t the first sub 4-metre SUV in the country but it kickstarted the craze for compact SUVs and made every other manufacturer sit up and take notice of the potential the segment held. Several car makers have attempted to dethrone the Ford EcoSport since, though it’s only in the recent past the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and now the Tata Nexon have truly managed to challenge it.

Of course, five years (the Ford EcoSport was launched in 2013) is a long time and the EcoSport was feeling dated. Which is why Ford is back with a thoroughly refreshed version. The good news is that changes aren’t limited to a redesigned face or spruced up interiors. The refreshed Ford EcoSport does boast all that but the bigger news is the all-new petrol engine under its hood. We spent the better part of a day driving it around Goa to see what the EcoSport feels like in its refreshed avatar.Check for Ford Ecosport price in Bangalore at Tryaldrive.

Ford Ecosport Design

There’s no major design update to speak off. But, the S does get some distinguishing features. For starters, it has been stripped off of all the chrome. The grille is finished in a sinister looking black-gunmetal grey combo, and the smoked headlamps (that now get HIDs!) just add to the aggression. Subtler changes such as the use of dark grey for the faux skidplate, the black roof and the black roof rails round things off. Finally, it gets a set of sweet looking 17-inch alloy wheels finished in, you guessed it, dark grey. This is low profile rubber we’re talking about (it’s down on about 20mm of sidewall compared to the 16-inchers) so please slow down if you spot a pothole. If you don’t, you’re looking at a possible bubble or tear in the sidewall. Notably, the tyre pressure monitoring system has been struck off of the Titanium+ feature list, and now been reserved for the S.

Ford Ecosport Cabin

Inside, it is equally sporty, with black dominating the interiors along with orange inserts on the doors and centre console; the seats get orange stitching and highlights. The instrument cluster now features chrome rings for the dials and also a new LCD MID screen, but the highlight of the interior is the all-important electric sunroof.

Infotainment-wise, you get the same 8-inch touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and Ford’s SYNC3 command system, but exclusive to the S is a tyre pressure monitoring system (this, like a few other features, was earlier available on the Titanium+ until it got a mild de-spec). Other aesthetic additions include alloy pedals which further add to the sporty visuals. The rest of the interior, though, remains the same as on the Titanium+ spec; in other words, it carries forward the part-leather seats, cruise control, ambient lighting and safety equipment such as six airbags, brake assist, stability control and hill hold assist as well.

Ford Ecosport Performance

Headlining the refreshed EcoSport is Ford’s new, 1.5-litre, three-cylinder, naturally aspirated petrol engine. It replaces the older 1.5-litre petrol engine and offers 123PS and 150Nm and comes mated to either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic gearbox. We drove the latter, which is a torque converter unit. Its refinement is the new engine’s biggest highlight and Ford tells us a lot of hard work has gone into eliminating the typical gruffness associated with three-cylinder engines.

Being naturally aspirated the engine is quick to respond to throttle inputs. The gearbox isn’t as quick as a twin clutch unit but feels adept at handling transmission duties. It makes light of city driving and gear changes are effected in a smooth, seamless manner. The EcoSport also gets paddle shifters, a segment first. The paddles work well though there is a slight delay before the gearbox shifts a gear when using the paddles. Claimed efficiency for the new petrol engine stands at 17kmpl.

We also drove the diesel version briefly which is has not received any changes. The engine is the same 1.5-litre, four-cylinder unit as before offering 100PS and comes mated to a five-speed manual gearbox only. It feels as refined and the gearbox offers precise shifts, though the clutch still feels slightly heavy.

Ford Ecosport Driving

We expected Ford to fiddle with the steering setup, or mess about with the suspension setting. They haven’t. This comes as a bit of a surprise to us, considering what they served up by making minor tweaks to the Figo and the Aspire.Ford’s reasoning for not tinkering with the springs though, seems totally justified. The EcoSport is already stiffly sprung, that just about cuts it for everyday drives. Stiffening it further would’ve made the ride borderline uncomfortable in their books.As far as the steering is concerned, Ford says it didn’t feel like it needed a quicker rack. We’d agree. While our drive along Chennai’s ECR barely gave us anything we could call a corner, the steering feels familiar. It’s got the right amount of weight whether you’re crawling or cruising. On the long swooping corners, we never had to correct our line.To know more details on Ford Ecosport  check Emikolo

Ford Ecosport Safety

Ford EcoSport has excellent front and rear suspensions to ensure that its passengers enjoy a comfortable ride. The high Ford EcoSport ground clearance also plays a vital role in this aspect. The lower end models have tyre size of 195/65R15 whereas its top models come with 17-inch alloy wheels. Ventilated disc brakes for the front wheel and drum brakes for the rear are good enough to bring the vehicle to an immediate halt. It comes with ABS and EBD so that the car does not skip or topple over when you apply sudden brakes in an emergency. All variants except for four Titanium models come with two airbags for driver and front seat passenger. The Titanium Plus models have six airbags to protect all passengers. Additional standard safety features include warnings for ‘door ajar,’ engine immobiliser, child safety locks, and a central locking system.

Ford Ecosport Price in Bangalore

Ford EcoSport On Road Price is 9,45,544/- and Ex-showroom Price is 7,82,300/- in Bangalore. Ford EcoSport comes in 8 colours, namely Mars Red,Moondust Silver,Golden Bronze,Smoke Grey,Chill Metallic,Kinetic Blue,Panther Black,Diamond White. Ford EcoSport comes with FWD with 1499 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 110 bhp@6300 rpm and Peak Torque 140 Nm@4400 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Ford EcoSport comes with Manual Transmission with FWD .

Ford Ecosport Bottomline

The Ford EcoSport was feeling dated as a package, especially in the company of newer competitors like the Maruti Vitara Brezza and Tata Nexon. Its styling was getting long in the tooth and the feature list wasn’t up to date either. The refreshed version takes care of all that and feels a lot more competent and modern. The new 1.5-litre petrol engine feels nice, and the automatic gearbox should make driving in city traffic more convenient. The suspension setup offers a better balance now, making the EcoSport even more likeable as an urban SUV.

Its facelift is a much needed shot in the arm for the EcoSport, and Ford is clearly aiming at winning back its crown in the compact SUV segment. The 2018 EcoSport will get launched in the coming weeks and when launched, we expect it to be priced in the same region as its current version to put up a serious fight to its competitors.

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