By on January 8, 2019

Image: Ford Motor Company

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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22 Comments on “Next Ford EcoSport to Become More Fiesta-like: Report...”

  • avatar

    How about Fiesta Outback Sport?

    Oh wait we can’t have that, or the Fusion Outback.

  • avatar

    Maybe it won’t suck as bad now.

    What this car desperately needs is more power.

  • avatar

    But of course. It’s being lowered.

    CAFE has destroyed sedans and now is eating CUVs.

    • 0 avatar

      This just in: CAFE has now also been blamed for bad table manners.

      Tune in next week to Fox and Friends – it’ll be blamed for the cancellation of “Firefly,” psoriasis, and erectile dysfunction.

      (But don’t blame Ford for making a tiny car that still manages to get s**tty gas mileage.)

  • avatar

    My hunch is that SUVs that look like jacked up hatchbacks do not do well in the US. People here want their SUVs to look like big boxy things. The Jeep Renegade is the same car as a Fiat 500X, but FCA sold over 97,000 Renegades here last year vs 5,000 500Xs. Meanwhile, in Europe, the 500X outsells the Renegade 90,000 to 72,000.

    Ford said it was going to sell the Focus “Active” jacked up hatchback here, then they changed their mind.

    Ecosports sold in Europe are now built in Romania, not India, so it’s entirely possible for Europe to get a new version that looks more like a Fiesta Active, while India continues to produce the old version for the US. Americans will buy an old model, if it’s cheap enough. Look at how many Journeys Dodge continues to sell.

    • 0 avatar

      Splendid comment and I completely agree.

      Jumpin’ Jehoshaphat, if only Asians made the Renegade.

    • 0 avatar

      Well, part of why the Renegade blows the 500x out of the water is brand image. Jeep has a very positive image to many Americans, and Fiat has a very negative image to many, if any image at all. The folks over 40 mostly view Fiat as total pieces of garbage, and to younger folks the word FIAT has zero brand equity whatsoever.

      I don’t disagree with you, but in your particular example there is a lot more than body style going on, at least in the USA.

      If FCA sold the 500x here badged as a Jeep Renegade (500x styling), and a car that looked like the current Renegade was sold here by Peugeot, I think the Jeep version would sell better despite the Peugeot version looking like the boxy thing. People either remember Peugeots as crap or nothing at all.

      Look how well the craptastic old gen Jeep Compass sold. A turd but it had a Jeep badge.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    6 speed and ST Drivetrain?

  • avatar

    “More Fiesta like”

    Knowing what the Fiesta was and knowing how inept Ford is, this is going to be amazing to watch then screw this up.

  • avatar

    Ignoring the qualities of the Ecoboost, this still means that the entry level Ford is 82% more expensive than an entry level Nissan, 25% more expensive than an entry level Honda and 30% more than an entry level Mazda badged as a Toyota. VW has been accused of abandoning its people’s car roots, but the Jetta starts $1,450 cheaper than the Ecoboost. Ford has managed to make a VW look like a good value by comparison.

  • avatar

    Ignoring the qualities of the EcoSport, this still means that the entry level Ford is 82% more expensive than an entry level Nissan, 25% more expensive than an entry level Honda and 30% more than an entry level Mazda badged as a Toyota. VW has been accused of abandoning its people’s car roots, but the Jetta starts $1,450 cheaper than the EcoSport. Ford has managed to make a VW look like a good value by comparison.

    • 0 avatar

      Don’t you think that it is a good thing to be able to sell products for higher retail price than competition? Like Apple e.g., or Ford in your case.

      Jetta BTW is made for colonials exclusively. They do not sell this crap in enlightened Europe.

  • avatar

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

  • avatar

    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.

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