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MouthShut Score

80%
3.58 

Leg Room:

Dealer Satisfaction:

Mileage:

Comfort:

Reliability:

Appeal:

Rs. 7,67,000 (Ex-Showroom)

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Review of Ford Ecosport, launched in india
Jul 17, 2013 10:21 PM 42213 Views
(Updated Jul 17, 2013 11:25 PM)

Leg Room:

Dealer Satisfaction:

Mileage:

Comfort:

Reliability:

Appeal:

Finally I got a chance to visit Ford dealership test drive ECOSPORT launched for vibrant and young India. There was only one vehicle available in west side of Pune. It was placed at Planet ford dealership on Senpati bapat road in Pune. There was no parking for 4 wheelers or 2 wheeler vehicles. Price tag starts at 5.6 lacks rupees to attract lower and upper middle class.  Show car at tulsi bag, big bazaar, shoppers stop, pune central, deccan, Tilak road, pacific mall, amnora would have got more eyes, minds and desires attached to it rather than senpati Bapat road. This is especially true because this car is targeted towards young (means all women) women in India.


Anyway, the car is exciting. I was very much excited about the car till I threw myself in driver seat. Well I don’t want to take away all the excitement from potential buyers yet. Since I might be one of the buyers of this car as well. Let me explain the pros first and then we will to the cons.


Now that I have verified for myself that the name of the car is “ECO” and “ECHO”. Unfortunately the class that is buying this car (SUV!!!) do not want to associate themselves with “ECO”. In fact, many of them are buying SUVs just because they want to come out of “Eco” image attached to their lifestyle.


Engine of this car is spots “turbo charged” but 1.0 liter associated with it makes it less sporty and more “Eco”. So for some reason “1.0L ECOSPORT” does not make sense as a concept. I hope “Turbo” part brings some magic or otherwise this car will not make a business case.


Pros:


This is all new segment design. It will be perfectly suited for narrow, restricted, crowed and rough Indian roads and raw tarr. The only other car in this segment is mahindra’s Xylo. But Mahindra has done very impressive job on Xylo. So there is virtually no competition for FORD in this segment.


Car is narrow not wide so it fits narrow streets and streets with crowed traffic.


Ecosport offers more effective entry and exit angel. Which is good for people who will take it for off-road driving. Ground clearance is 200mm, which is much required due to “Speed breaker” road culture. 1.0 ecoboost engine delivers 125 PS power and that is impressive. Approximate curb weight is 1297 Kgs (above 1 ton). Perhaps weight under 1000 kgs might have helped achieved better power to weight ratio. (for a reference Maruti Gypsy launched nearly 20 years ago had 100 PS power and weight of 850 kgs and was in similar category).


Base model comes with body colored bumpers and turn light indicator on side mirrors. Mirrors are also body coloured. This makes look fender much better (without hole for indicator). Spare tire on the hatch back door looks very unique. There is an assist cylinder for opening rear hatch door since it is little heavier due to spare tire mounted on it. Spare tire is full size, which makes the car heavier (scores bad on fuel economy). Small spare tire with full size plastic cover would have saved some weight. The boot space is very little and roof rack for loading luggage might be helpful. Rear seat has 2 segments and one of them reclines in 2 different stages. 1st stage is very upwards and good for city rides and other long is for long rides. There is a plastic cladding on all doors and it takes away robust/ solid steel look of the car.


Cons:


A pillar merges strongly on roof and due to this it makes a blind spot for driver. Bigger A pillar is required for crash (roll over) resistance but it should not come at a cost of visibility of driver (especially women driver). The biggest disadvantage of this car is probably lack of visibility in driver seat due to over done dashboard and central instrument panel. Push button style central control panel jumps out too much and takes away leg room for driver and front passenger seat.


2nd disadvantage of this car is for short (under 5 feet 4 inches height) back seat riders. Back seat starts too much deep inside from outside panel of wheelhouse. This makes it difficult for rear passenger seat to reach at the time of entry. Some of the quality on rear door is not very impressive (dents at welds), sealer quality and some paint quality has issues. But that quality is much better than Maruti-suzuki and competitive with Hyundai cars. Unfortunately 1 week after the launch Indian Union Budget announced. In this budget government increased the excise duty levied on SUVs from 27% to 30% for all vehicles with ground clearance greater than 170mm. Therefore Ford Ecospot will have 30% duty.


Due to this, the base Ecosport model will cost about 16, 800 rupees more and top end model will cost 30, 000 rupess more. Mahindra announced that they going to chop ground clearance on XUV to 180 mm  by chopping wheel size and adding steel structure for engine guard. This is double edged sward for Indian consumers. Generally there are pot holes more than 170 mm on Indian city roads. If a consumer want to avoid damage due to pot holes and buys car with more than 170 mm ground clearance government will penalize them by 3% more excise duty. Got bless the steel guard which is in between engine and pot holes.


This SUV is very good looking and makes bet for small young family. (2+2). Rear seat cannot accommodate 3 people. Offer of Microsoft SYNC with blue tooth navigation and voice controlled audio options is one of the biggest advantages of this car. Car is very safe with strong SUV like structure and high ground clearance. This SUV will be made in India.


Capacity of plant is 240, 000 units per year from Chennai. Dual tone interior with leather seating option makes it much better package.


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