Next Ford EcoSport to Become More Fiesta-like: Report

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
next ford ecosport to become more fiesta like report

Once the Fiesta drains from North American Ford lots following its May 2019 discontinuation, it’s up to the company’s subcompact EcoSport crossover to draw entry-level buyers into the Blue Oval fold.

Imported from India, the second-generation EcoSport, which first arrived on these shores at the dawn of 2018, kicked off for the 2013 model year overseas, making the EcoSport anything but all-new. Luckily, there’s a replacement in the works.

Spy photos published by Britain’s Autocar reveal Ford might align the third-gen model’s styling more closely with that country’s new Fiesta — a vehicle we’re not allowed to have here. In comparison, the current EcoSport resembles an Escape sandwiched between two transports on an icy highway. A contemporary body would no doubt garner applause from North American critics.

Even though the Fiesta leaves us this year, its platform does not. The model’s 2011-vintage B2E architecture continues in service beneath the EcoSport, and will soldier on even after the redesigned EcoSport appears — likely in 2020 as a 2021 model. For the seventh-gen Fiesta, bowing in 2017, Ford upgraded the platform with a stiffer front subframe and new rear torsion beam.

Autocar suggests Ford might do something about a product name that hasn’t resonated all that well in the UK market, but there’s no confirmation of this. Remember, it’s “echo sport,” not “eco sport.” As for powertrains, those could be a carryover.

In spite of jokes emanating from various corners of the internet, the EcoSport’s first year on the U.S. market was not a bust. Ford sold some 54,348 EcoSports in 2018 — nearly 3,000 more than its Fiesta platform mate (which happened to be the only Ford car to see a volume increase last year). Put another way, the EcoSport outsold the Toyota C-HR by roughly 4,000 units and moved triple the number of vehicles as Mazda’s CX-3.

[Image: Ford]

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3 of 22 comments
  • Mike978 Mike978 on Jan 08, 2019

    Ford cannot have the pronounciation of eco both ways depending on if it is ecosport or ecoboost. They need a better name.

    • Cactuar Cactuar on Jan 09, 2019

      The bigger issue IMO is that the car is neither eco nor sport.

  • Conundrum Conundrum on Jan 08, 2019

    Autocar has always been amazed how bad the Ecosport is. When the Gen 1 came out 2012 they wondered how a Fiesta could go so horribly wrong simply by raising it on stilts. They gave it two out of 5 stars which means it was rubbish and bottom of class. When the Gen 2 came out just before the Ecosport debuted in the US, it was already made in Romania for Europe. The hundreds of improvements raised its rating to 3 grudging stars. It's still rubbish. 54,000 customers for this thing is just the sweepings off the dealer finance office floor, people who ended up not qualifying for a bigger loan for a bigger Ford. Captive customers on tenterhooks waiting for credit approval. What, does anyone think anyone but a paid-up Druid would buy an Ecosport after test-driving anything else? Not a chance.

  • BEPLA My own theory/question on the Mark VI:Had Lincoln used the longer sedan wheelbase on the coupe - by leaning the windshield back and pushing the dashboard & steering wheel rearward a bit - not built a sedan - and engineered the car for frameless side windows (those framed windows are clunky, look cheap, and add too many vertical lines in comparison to the previous Marks) - Would the VI have remained an attractive, aspirational object of desire?
  • VoGhost Another ICEbox? Pass. Where are you going to fill your oil addiction when all the gas stations disappear for lack of demand? I want a pickup that I can actually use for a few decades.
  • Art Vandelay Best? PCH from Ventura to somewhere near Lompoc. Most Famous? Route Irish
  • GT Ross The black wheel fad cannot die soon enough for me.
  • Brett Woods My 4-Runner had a manual with the 4-cylinder. It was acceptable but not really fun. I have thought before that auto with a six cylinder would have been smoother, more comfortable, and need less maintenance. Ditto my 4 banger manual Japanese pick-up. Nowhere near as nice as a GM with auto and six cylinders that I tried a bit later. Drove with a U.S. buddy who got one of the first C8s. He said he didn't even consider a manual. There was an article about how fewer than ten percent of buyers optioned a manual in the U.S. when they were available. Visited my English cousin who lived in a hilly suburb and she had a manual Range Rover and said she never even considered an automatic. That's culture for you.  Miata, Boxster, Mustang, Corvette and Camaro; I only want manual but I can see both sides of the argument for a Mustang, Camaro or Challenger. Once you get past a certain size and weight, cruising with automatic is a better dynamic. A dual clutch automatic is smoother, faster, probably more reliable, and still allows you to select and hold a gear. When you get these vehicles with a high performance envelope, dual-clutch automatic is what brings home the numbers.