The Car Connection Ford Ecosport Overview
The Ford EcoSport is a compact crossover that lacks any pretense of being an SUV. Its small dimensions and smaller engines are geared toward short commutes and city runabouts.
It may be new to America for the 2018 model year, but the Ford EcoSport is actually a global crossover sold here on Ford's home turf.
With the EcoSport, Ford will re-use a nameplate that has been around since the early 2000s, when it was applied to a Brazilian-built, pint-size crossover. The version headed to the United States is based on a model assembled in about half a dozen plants and sold in virtually every market worldwide.
The version destined for the U.S. will be sourced from a Ford production facility in India. Our version in the States will be a new generation of EcoSports, which has been on sale around the world since 2013.
MORE: Read our 2018 Ford EcoSport review
Designed to square off against rivals like the Mazda CX-3 and the Chevrolet Trax, the EcoSport is a small five-seat crossover with limited cargo space and a tight second row of seats. But its pint-size dimensions make it decidedly city-oriented here. Instead of a liftgate like its rivals, the EcoSport features a swing-out tailgate. In some markets, that tailgate has a spare tire festooned to it, but the American EcoSport does without a spare. That's not necessarily unusual; most rivals do without a fifth wheel and tire as well.
Global EcoSports come in at around 167 inches from head to toe, making them quite a bit smaller than the brand's Escape. For comparison, the Escape is about a foot longer, with most of that space dedicated to the rear seat and the cargo area.
The EcoSport is based on the Ford Fiesta's platform, which gives it decent handling. Ford offers a choice between 1.0-liter turbo-3 and 2.0-liter inline-4. Only the 4-cylinder model is offered with all-wheel drive. Both engines are mated exclusively to 6-speed automatic transmissions.
The 2018 EcoSport is offered in four trim levels—S, SE, SES, and Titanium. The SES model includes a specially tuned sport suspension and copper-tinted interior and exterior accents, but it is offered only with the 2.0-liter engine and all-wheel drive.
On the tech front, the EcoSport packs a lot for a small vehicle. An 8.0-inch touchscreen shows off Ford's updated Sync 3 system and both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A 10-speaker B&O Play audio system is included on the Titanium, too.