Ford has lastly launched its rested EcoSport compact SUV with prices starting at Rs.7.31 lakh for the base Ambiente trim, going up to Rs.10.99 lakh for the top-spec Titanium+ variant (all prices ex-showroom, India). The manufacturer opened bookings for the compact SUV on November 5, 2017. Despite the level of localization growing from 65 % to a claimed 85 percent, the new model is about Rs.10, 000 dearer than the pre-facelift EcoSport which was priced between Rs.7.21 lakh and Rs.10.92 lakh. In terms of design, the face lifted EcoSport gets a new grille that is in line with Ford’s design language, projector headlamps with LED daytime running lights, new 17-inch alloy wheels and new exterior colour options containing a new shade of orange, blue and red.
On the inside, the refreshed EcoSport gets a touchscreen infotainment system on all variants, except for the base trim. It is mounted in the redesigned center console and comes with Ford’s SYNC3 support system and Apple Car Play and Android Auto. The cabin also features new seat upholstery, audio controls mounted on the three-spoke steering wheel, automatic climate control and dual USB ports. Ford has provided a decent level of kit across the range with 2 airbags at the front and ABS with EBD. The petrol-automatic model also features paddleshifters, hill start assist, ESC and traction control, while the top-spec Titanium+ trim gets side and curtain airbags along with Isofix child-seat mounts at the rear. The highlight of the new EcoSport, however, is that it is powered by a new 1.5-litre petrol motor from Ford’s Dragon series of engines. The 3-cylinder certainly aspirated petrol mill creates 123hp at 6,500rpm and 150Nm at 4,500rpm, and can be coupled to either a five-speed manual gearbox or a six-speed automatic.
The new EcoSport also offers the older model’s 100hp, 1.5-litre diesel engine that is paired with a five-speed manual transmission. The petrol-manual has an ARAI expert fuel proficiency of 17kpl, the petrol-automatic is valued at 14.8kpl, while the diesel engine can go 23km on a litre of fuel. A full road test will be necessary to see if the EcoSport will be able to win back its crown in the compact SUV segment where it rivals the newly launched Tata Nexon (Rs.5.85 lakh – Rs.9.45 lakh) and the Maruti Vitara Brezza (Rs.7.23 lakh – Rs.9.69 lakh).