Ford EcoSport 2018 review

Versus the competition
The EcoSport feels like a bona fide SUV, not a jacked-up hatchback like some of its rivals, and Ford offers a first-rate multimedia system to boot. But as drivability and utility annoyances add up, its appeal is fleeting.
A Real (Looking) SUV
A tall, if stubby, profile gives the EcoSport a legitimate SUV likeness, something lacking in competitors like the Honda HR-V, Fiat 500X and Mazda CX-3, which all sit noticeably lower. It looks like a truncated Escape; it's 16.8 inches shorter measured from bumper to bumper but only about an inch lower in height. That nails the ethos of a tiny-footprint SUV: still tall, just small.
Slow and Unsteady
On front-drive models, the EcoSport's 123-horsepower, turbocharged three-cylinder has some punchiness at higher revs and sufficient low-end torque to ratchet up speed if your right foot is patient, but one editor complained of excessive drivetrain lag from a stop. With more displacement but no turbo, the four-cylinder (166 hp) trades that punch for linearity. It's a smoother trip up the tachometer, but it's hardly a quick one. The midrange torque from the turbo three-cylinder is clearly missing, and the extra horsepower doesn't make up for it — nor do the extra 250-280 pounds of curb weight (another roughly 9 percent) you get with AWD, which blunts any positive effect.
The Inside
Cabin quality is mixed. Materials are better than many in this class, with low-gloss padding on the dashboard and front and rear door armrests, but some models we tested had excessive shimmy in the center armrest and exposed insulation near the windshield. I'm also curious why Ford chose to invest in a padded dashboard but left the upper doors (where your arms and elbows end up) covered in hard shiny plastic, rather than the other way around. That said, most competitors cheap out in both areas.
Pricing and Value
Including destination, prices range from around $21,000 for a front-drive EcoSport S to $31,000 for a Titanium loaded with extras like a moonroof, heated leather seats, a heated steering wheel, single-zone automatic climate control, B&O audio and the 8-inch touchscreen. The EcoSport has yet to be crash-tested, and important safety technologies like forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking and lane departure warning aren't available — a drawback common to the non-luxury subcompact SUV class a few years ago but less acceptable today.

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