Ford EcoSport Europe-08

The Ford EcoSport, which hasn’t really set the market alight here and in Europe, has been ‘significantly enhanced’ for the Continent. Now available to order, the compact SUV comes with ‘sophisticated styling upgrades’, improved driving dynamics and new equipment for more comfort and convenience.

Looks wise, the EcoSport can be had without a rear-mounted spare wheel for the first time, perhaps because sophisticated markets aren’t into the rugged look the original tried to portray. Cars specified without the spare wheel will get a tyre mobility kit and a revised design for the rear swing-gate for easier access to the boot.

Inside, the new partial leather seats offered as standard on Titanium models feature high quality materials. Privacy glass is available for trim levels, while the Winter Pack adds rear seat ventilation at floor level to improve comfort for rear passengers in cold weather.

Europeans can now order a refreshed Ford EcoSport without the rear-mounted spare wheel

The dash gets a black lower instrument panel, centre console and door boards, while the instrument cluster now features a light dimming function and chrome rings to match the electric window switches. Models equipped with Ford’s SYNC voice-controlled connectivity system feature a four-inch colour display in the centre console. The handbrake lever positioning has been optimised for easier reach and use.

Noise, vibration and harshness levels also have been reduced with thicker insulation materials in the doors and dashboard as well as tighter seals around the pedals for a more refined experience. Engine and gearbox matching has been revised to offer more low speed torque and better drivability.

Development work done in Europe has significantly improved driving dynamics, it is claimed. A stiffer rear torsion beam offers greater control of body roll, while revised spring and shock absorber rates improve damping. A 10 mm reduction in ride height lowers the Ford’s centre of gravity for improved handling, and ESC and power steering systems have been retuned for Europe.

Ford EcoSport Europe-07

There are changed under the hood, too. The 1.5 litre TDCi engine now offers 95 PS, a 5 PS improvement, and delivers 4.4 litres per 100 km fuel consumption in the NEDC. The 125 PS 1.0 litre EcoBoost delivers 5.4 l/100 km, while the 1.5 litre Ti-VCT naturally aspirated engine delivers 6.3 l/100 km. All engines now meet Euro 6 emissions standards.

Ford also promises new tech for later this year, with things such as satellite navigation and a reverse camera going into the EcoSport for the first time.

The scale of the enhancement work suggests that the original made-in-India SUV might have been below acceptable standards in Europe, lacking in refinement and sophistication. Renault’s Captur leads the segment in Europe, followed by the Peugeot 2008.

Ford EcoSport in Malaysia