Ford Continues SUV Dominance in U.S. with New EcoSport
When you think of SUVs, you probably think Ford. It’s not just because you are all fans of Ford, but because they have had SUV sales dominance in the United States for as long as I can remember. As time progresses, so do the number of SUV models Ford offers, and their latest is to fill the hole in the rapidly-growing subcompact segment. Their fill of that hole comes in the form of the all new EcoSport.
The subcompact SUV segment is growing rapidly, with new entries recently from Honda (the HR-V), Mazda (the CX-3), Chevrolet (the Trax) and others. Ford believes that there are customers who want Ford’s experience in building SUVs, but in a smaller size.
Powering the new EcoSport is the 1.0L, 3-cylinder EcoBoost engine. That engine is only available with front-wheel drive. If you opt for all-wheel drive, you’ll be using Ford’s tried-and-true 2.0L naturally-aspirated 4-cylinder.
For those with keen eyes, and knowledge of Google, know that the EcoSport isn’t a new vehicle globally, but receives a few subtle changes before going on sale in the United States. It’s built atop Ford’s global B platform.
Trim levels vary from an entry-level S, to an upgraded SE, to a sporty SES, and the top-of-the-line Titanium trim. While SES doesn’t sound sporty, it’s the version that’ll have the the sportiest bits, including darker wheels and accent trim pieces, and some really classy-looking interior stripes that look good — not tacky.
The rear lift-gate swings open instead of opening like a traditional hatch, and there’s ample room in the storage area for a vehicle of this size. No, it’s not an Explorer, but there’s smart use of the space.
In addition to Ford’s SYNC 3 infotainment system, the EcoSport will be the first Ford vehicle to have the B&O Play system as an option. In this application, it’s a 675 watt setup with 10 speakers. To give you all the connectivity options possible, there are two rapid-charging USB ports up front, and the system works with everything, plus it supports Apple Car Play and Android Auto.
The thing that stands out the most in the interior is the 8″ infotainment screen. The screen doesn’t retract, and sits upright to prevent glare, but it’s a nice looking screen that’s easy to use. It dominates the dash and gives the car an even more upmarket feel.
First impressions are positive. It’s a stylish little SUV that you mistake for anything other than a Ford, and a vehicle that has some of Ford’s latest and greatest technology in a compact package. While we won’t know pricing or more details until later on, we like what we see so far.
What do you think? Is the EcoSport a vehicle you’d consider alongside your F-150 or Super Duty in your garage?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or over in the forums.