Ford EcoSport VS Toyota C-HR

Ford and Toyota offer slightly different takes on the popular subcompact SUV formula. How do they stack up?

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.

Overview

The Good

Its bold, unique design helps it stand out. Performance is relaxed and the ride is comfortable.

The Bad

The standard infotainment tech lacks all but the most basic functionality. The cabin feels as cheap as it looks.

The Bottom Line

The C-HR looks neat, but there are far better options in this hotly contested segment.

Ratings

Performance

The EcoSport uses a diminutive 1.0-liter turbo-3 engine while the C-HR packs a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter I4. You might think that'd make the Ford a bit more efficient, but that's not the case -- even with more power, the Toyota is estimated to achieve a still-not-superb 31 miles per gallon highway, while the Ford tops out at an even-worse 29 mpg. On the road, the Toyota feels a bit more solid from behind the wheel, with better steering and chassis tuning. But while the Toyota is available exclusively with front-wheel drive, you can get the EcoSport with all-wheel drive, though it requires stepping up to the larger 2.0-liter engine which costs an additional $1,450.

Features

Ford will let you outfit your EcoSport with niceties like leather seats, heated seats, a heated steering wheel, a sunroof and a robust infotainment system, the C-HR offers... none of that. On the other hand, while the EcoSport is decidedly light on safety features, every C-HR comes standard with Toyota's full Safety Sense P (TSS-P) suite, including forward pre-collision braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane-keeping assist, automatic high-beams and adaptive cruise control.

Design

Neither car does particularly well here. On one hand, the EcoSport has a more traditional SUV shape, though the swing-out rear door is a hassle for backed-in and parallel parking situations. The C-HR, meanwhile, offers a more youthful, expressive design, though its angular styling causes problems for rearward visibility from the driver's seat. Both crossovers look and feel cheap inside, and neither offers best-in-class cargo or passenger space.

Media

If it's a robust infotainment system you seek, you'll definitely prefer the EcoSport. It's available with Ford's full Sync 3 system, which includes Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, optional navigation, AppLink smartphone mirroring and a WiFi hotspot. The C-HR, meanwhile, offers one head unit across the board, and it doesn't come with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, navigation or even a CD slot.

Overall

While the Ford offers a lot more features, you pay for the privilege. A fully loaded EcoSport can top out well over $28,000, while the most expensive Toyota C-HR comes in at $24,350, before destination. If you want funky style and decent utility on a budget, the C-HR will make a lot of sense, and it's arguably the better vehicle to drive. But for most subcompact SUV customers, the EcoSport's broader trim level strategy and longer list of available equipment will likely be more appealing. I still wouldn't have either over a Honda HR-V or Kia Soul.

Videos / Photos

model 2018 Ford EcoSport S FWD
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport Titanium FWD
    2018 Ford EcoSport Titanium FWD -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport
    2018 Ford EcoSport -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport Titanium 4WD
    2018 Ford EcoSport Titanium 4WD -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport SE FWD
    2018 Ford EcoSport SE FWD -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport SE 4WD
    2018 Ford EcoSport SE 4WD -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport S 4WD
    2018 Ford EcoSport S 4WD -
  • 2018 Ford EcoSport SES 4WD
    2018 Ford EcoSport SES 4WD -

Specs

model 2018 Toyota C-HR XLE FWD
  • 2018 Toyota C-HR XLE Premium FWD
    2018 Toyota C-HR XLE Premium FWD -
Fuel
Gasoline Fuel Fuel Gasoline Fuel
28 MPG MPG 29 MPG
Basics
3 Cylinder Engine, Turbocharged Engine 4 Cylinder Engine
Front Wheel Drive Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
Transmission w/Dual Shift Mode, 6-Speed A/T, A/T Transmission CVT Transmission, A/T, Transmission w/Dual Shift Mode
Body
SUVs, Crossovers Body style SUVs
Braking & Handling
ABS, 4-Wheel Disc Brakes Brakes ABS, 4-Wheel Disc Brakes
Power Steering Steering Power Steering
Tire Pressure Monitor Tires Tire Pressure Monitor
Aluminum Wheels Wheels Aluminum Wheels
Technology Features
MP3 Player, Auxiliary Audio Input, Smart Device Integration, AM/FM Stereo Audio AM/FM Stereo, MP3 Player, Auxiliary Audio Input, HD Radio
Keyless Entry, Power Door Locks Locks Power Door Locks, Keyless Entry
Driver Illuminated Vanity Mirror, Driver Vanity Mirror, Passenger Illuminated Visor Mirror, Passenger Vanity Mirror, Power Mirror(s) Mirrors Power Mirror(s), Passenger Vanity Mirror, Driver Vanity Mirror, Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror, Passenger Illuminated Visor Mirror, Driver Illuminated Vanity Mirror
Cruise Control, Cargo Shade, Engine Immobilizer, Trip Computer, Back-Up Camera, Intermittent Wipers, Variable Speed Intermittent Wipers, Automatic Headlights, Bluetooth Connection, Telematics, Steering Wheel Audio Controls, Adjustable Steering Wheel Tech Back-Up Camera, Intermittent Wipers, Variable Speed Intermittent Wipers, Automatic Headlights, Steering Wheel Audio Controls, Bluetooth Connection, Adjustable Steering Wheel, Trip Computer, Leather Steering Wheel, Cruise Control, Adaptive Cruise Control, Cargo Shade, Engine Immobilizer, Security System
Safety
Stability Control, Traction Control, Child Safety Locks, Brake Assist, Daytime Running Lights Safety Features Stability Control, Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Child Safety Locks, Brake Assist, Integrated Turn Signal Mirrors, Daytime Running Lights, Traction Control
Passenger Air Bag, Front Head Air Bag, Driver Air Bag, Knee Air Bag, Rear Side Air Bag, Front Side Air Bag, Rear Head Air Bag, Passenger Air Bag Sensor Air Bags Passenger Air Bag, Driver Air Bag, Knee Air Bag, Rear Head Air Bag, Front Side Air Bag, Passenger Air Bag Sensor, Rear Side Air Bag, Front Head Air Bag
Cabin
A/C Air Conditioning Climate Control, A/C, Multi-Zone A/C
Cloth Seats Seat Trim Cloth Seats
Power Windows, Rear Defrost Windows Rear Defrost, Privacy Glass, Power Windows
Bucket Seats, Pass-Through Rear Seat, Rear Bench Seat, Driver Adjustable Lumbar Seats Bucket Seats, Pass-Through Rear Seat, Rear Bench Seat
Dimensions
99.2 in Wheelbase (in) 103.9 in
161.3 in Length,Overall (in) 171.2 in
64.8 in Height,Overall (in) 61.6 in
3020 lbs Base Curb Weight (lbs) 3300 lbs
Other Details
13.6 Fuel Tank Capacity, Approx (gal) 14, 13.2
Compact Spare Tire Size Compact
Small Sport Utility Vehicles 2WD EPA Classification Small Sport Utility Vehicles 2WD

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