Ford Ecosport discontinued, leaving nothing but an echo in small crossover history

September 15, 2021

The Ford Ecosport small crossover will be discontinued in the U.S. market by the middle of 2022, according to a report last week from the Detroit Free Press. The lackluster import with the swinging rear tailgate never caught on like it did in other global markets since its 2018 arrival in the U.S.

Pronounced "EH-co sport" as in "mEH", the subcompact crossover lacked the "Eco" bona fides suggested by its name. With front-wheel-drive, it earned an EPA-rated 27 mpg city, 29 highway, 28 combined. Available all-wheel drive lowered it to 25 mpg combined. Despite trailing the better efficiency of many other entry-level small crossovers, the 2021 Ford Ecosport's thrifty fuel economy was the best rating segment in its overall TCC Rating of 3.5 out of 10. (Read more about how we rate cars.

"The 2021 Ford Ecosport small crossover forsakes its name and doesn't offer much by way of driving excitement or efficiency," we wrote in our latest review of the perennial underperformer. The lack of standard safety features, a dim 4.2-inch display screen without smartphone compatibility, and a 123-hp turbo-3 made it hard to appreciate. 

Ford's decision to discontinue the Ecosport was precipitated by shuttering its plant in India, where the Ecosport was made, and redirecting those resources to engineering and technology.

Popular in Brazil, the Ecosport reached a high point in its second full year of sales with 67,708 models sold in 2019, according to The Free Press. The numbers dipped in 2020, and plummeted more than 25% from its high in the first half of this year as the subcompact SUV market bloomed. 

Ford also launched the 2021 Ford Bronco Sport late last year in the small crossover segment. Several automakers sell two models in the small crossover segment, replacing in recent year the subcompact sedans and hatchbacks as an entry-level choice for shoppers. Initial offerings such as the Chevy Trax, Buick Encore, and Mazda CX-3 have been supplanted by slightly larger vehicles better suited to American tastes, including the new Chevrolet Trailblazer, Buick Encore GX, and Mazda CX-30. The CX-3 was discontinued this year, and the Trax and Encore are expected to follow the pack into automotive history.  

The Ecosport will carry on as a 2022 model until midway through next year. 

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