The Ford EcoSport comes with two engine choices. The base car has a 1.0L in-line, 3-cylinder turbocharged engine producing 123 horsepower. A bigger, 2.0L engine with 4-cylinders meanwhile, produces 166 horsepower; though owners will have to pay a small mileage penalty for the extra power. Power is sent to the front tires, or to all-four wheels via a 6-speed automatic transmission. While Ford has not released mileage estimates for the EcoSport, we expect exceptional mileage for an SUV.
The EcoSport comes in four distinct trim levels, starting with the base S version. Standard equipment on the base model include one-touch power windows, automatic headlights, an MP3 capable stereo with six speakers, two USB ports, air conditioning, hill start assist, a rearview camera and an anti-theft system. Outside, the EcoSport has 16-inch wheels, daytime running lights, mirrors with an integrated blind spot system and the ability to tow up to 2000 lbs.
Stepping up to the SE gets buyers Ford's SYNC 3 operating system, SiriusXM Satellite radio, a power moonroof, automatic temperature control, body colored door handles, a trip computer and sensors in the rear bumper to help while backing up.
Titanium edition EcoSports get a much nicer stereo, a voice activated touch screen navigation system, Perforated leather seating surfaces, rain sensing wipers, a leather steering wheel and shift knob and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. Outside, the Titanium is easily recognizable by its fog lamps, 17-inch wheels and additional chrome work. Several safety features are also included on the Titanium, including a cross-traffic alert system and an emergency brake assist system.
The top of the line SES is a little sportier than other EcoSports, starting with the engine. The bigger 2.0L comes standard as does sport tuned suspension. Otherwise the SES is equipped similarly to the Titanium and SE versions of the vehicle.
Don't let Ford's heavy use of the meaningless "first-ever" marketing term fool you; the 2018 EcoSport is hardly a new vehicle. Based on the 2011 Fiesta, the current EcoSport has been sold abroad since 2012, and its predecessor, initially designed for the emerging Indian and South American markets, has been in existence since 2003.
So why is it just now arriving in America? The simple answer is, you guys really like small SUVs. These vehicles represent the fastest-growing segment in the automotive space right now, and for a mainstream automaker like Ford, it'd be a huge mistake not to offer something in this class.
The EcoSport gets a number of 2018 model year enhancements as part of a global mid-cycle refresh. Are they enough to make Ford's mini-SUV stand out in a rapidly growing segment, or is this all just too little, too late?
The Good Plenty of amenities, robust in-car tech, and a super-small footprint means it’s great for congested cities.
The Bad Smaller than all of its competitors and no more economical. Many interior materials are sub-par, and that swing-out tailgate is a pain.
The Bottom Line Ford’s rush job to Americanize its global EcoSport results in a vehicle that’s mid-pack at best.
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