Ford Europe has revealed the 2016 EcoSport compact-SUV/crossover. The model has not done well in the matured markets of Europe, where the EcoSport is seen as weirdly designed, cheap and sparsely specced. With the 2016 update, Ford hopes to change that perception of the vehicle in the customers’ eyes.
The 2016 EcoSport gets cosmetic changes on the outside, upgrade of materials used inside, new equipment and an updated diesel motor.
In terms of design, the 2016 EcoSport gets a reworked front bumper and rear bumper with silver inserts, and blue-highlight LED DRLs. Customers have been given the choice of not getting the rear-door mounted spare wheel, many found this excessive in the previous model considering that this car was basically a city-slicker and not a hardcore SUV. Customers who choose not to get the spare-wheel will get a redesigned rear-door and a tyre repair kit.
On the inside, the design may look the same at first but the materials used are more upmarket, the use of black-and-dark-grey theme makes the cabin look more upmarket too. The addition of piano-black trim around the cabin along with partial-leather seat covers add to the premium feel in the cabin, says Ford. The medley of buttons on the centre console for the multimedia system has been replaced with a simpler interface, the multimedia screen is now a larger colour unit with integrated navigation- and rear-camera display. Ford has added more sound-deadening materials around the cabin to improve NVH levels, while also tweaking the suspension and steering to improve the handling characteristics of the compact-SUV.
The biggest change under the surface is the retuned 1.5-litre, turbocharged, 4-cylinder TDCi diesel engine. It now develops a maximum of 95PS (as compared to 91PS earlier), which should improve its performance marginally. Ford claims that the diesel engine is more responsive and tractable with the update, while also being more efficient. The two petrol motors, the 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder Ti-VCT naturally-aspirated motor and the 1.0-litre, turbocharged, 3-cylinder EcoBoost unit remains unchanged.
The EcoSport sold in Europe is manufactured at Ford’s plant at Maraimalai Nagar in Tamil Nadu, India. It is not known if and when the new EcoSport will be launched in India as the company is currently concentrating its energy in launching the Ford Figo Aspire compact sedan, the new Figo hatchback and the new Endeavour SUV in the market.
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