2018 Ford EcoSport Review

Model Overview

The current trend towards compact Crossovers has prompted Ford to introduce the EcoSport to the US market for 2018. While not a direct replacement for the outgoing Fiesta, the two do share a platform and some running gear components.

The EcoSport is the smallest Ford SUV in the range but it still comes packed with advanced available technology and the smaller footprint makes it ideal for maneuvering into tight parking spaces.

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What’s it like inside?

The interior is a mix of decent quality plastics and materials, higher trim levels increase the luxury levels with leather upholstery and a sliding arm rest. The more advanced touchscreen infotainment system and other desirable tech features are also reserved for the top trim levels.

Despite the small exterior dimensions, there is enough space in the cabin for four adults although the trunk is smaller than the class average.

How does it drive?

The EcoSport is based on the capable Fiesta Hatchback and while its higher center of gravity and slightly increased weight will dampen its dynamic abilities, the EcoSport should stack up well compared to other compact Crossovers.

Ride quality should be decent too as the Fiesta proved capable over rougher road surfaces and the added weight of the EcoSport should provide a more settled ride on the highway.

What about the performance?

The EcoSport can be specified with either a 1.0-liter EcoBoost turbocharged engine or 2.0-liter inline-four. Official power figures are not available as yet although these engines are fitted to other Ford products so you can expect up to around 120 horsepower for the smaller engine and between 140 and 160 hp for the 2.0-liter unit.

A 6-speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive are standard. All-wheel drive is available on higher trim levels in conjunction with the 2.0-liter engine.

What are my options?

The four trim levels offered with the EcoSport are S, SE, SES and Titanium. All barring the SES are fitted with the 1.0-liter engine and FWD. The SES comes standard with the 2.0-liter engine and AWD, this is optional on the other trim levels.

The base S Trim comes with a cloth interior upholstery, air-conditioning, power mirrors, cruise control, split-folding rear seats, rear-swing gate, 4.2-inch display screen, Bluetooth connectivity and a 6-speaker audio system. A rearview camera, 16-inch alloy wheels, daytime running lights and emergency brake assist are also standard.

SE Trim adds a power sunroof, the Sync 3 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system incorporating Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, heated front seats and power driver’s seat. The available SE Convenience Package adds ambient lighting, blind spot and rear cross traffic alert, 7-speaker audio system, 8-inch touchscreen, voice-activated navigation and Sync Connect.

SES Trim adds the SE Convenience Package as standard and also includes paddle shifters, partial leather seats, sport tuned suspension and larger 17-inch alloy wheels. It also offers a number of unique exterior and interior design details to set it apart from the rest of the range.

The Titanium Trim offers leather upholstery, sliding armrest and a B&O 9-speaker audio system and it too has unique design accents. A Cold Weather Package adds floor liners, heated side mirrors, heated steering wheel and a windshield wiper de-icer. A remote start system and keyless entry keypad are available as standalone options and lower trims can be specified with the larger 17-inch alloy wheels.

The Verdict

The Ford EcoSport offers a convincing mix of modern technology and safety systems that should see it match up well against such strong opposition as the Mazda CX-3 and Honda HR-V. The availability of all-wheel drive and decent interior space adds to its practicality levels although the below average trunk space could be a problem for some.

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