Ford bolsters local EcoSport range with new gearbox and host of features


Ford South Africa bolsters its EcoSport range with the addition of a new automatic model. The 1.5 Ambiente model sees the introduction of an automatic transmission, making it the third most-affordable offering in the seven-model range.

As it stands, the EcoSport range consists of three Ambiente models, available with either a 1.5-litre diesel or 1.5-litre petrol engine. The diesel is available with only a manual gearbox, while the petrol can be specified with the same manual transmission or the new six-speed auto ‘box.

The remaining four models are all fitted with Ford’s award-winning turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine, available in Trend and Titanium trims.

A six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission can be mated to the engine.

New additions

Commenting on the latest addition to the range, Doreen Mashinini, general manager marketing at Ford SA, says: “The compact SUV category grew substantially with the maiden launch of the EcoSport in South Africa in 2013, and the model has dominated this class ever since. The introduction of a six-speed automatic transmission for the EcoSport 1.5 Ambiente represents another trend-setting move for this successful model, which now also offers the best value for money automatic in the entry-level compact utility segment.”

The 1.5-litre petrol engine, also a three-cylinder unit, delivers 91kW and 150Nm which are sent to the front wheels. The diesel engine produces slightly less power at 74kW than its petrol counterpart, but torque comes in at a hefty 205Nm. 

In its official release, Ford SA notes that the diesel engine is now fitted with a six-speed manual transmission; meaning that the stalwart five-speed manual has (finally) been omitted from the equation. 

The 1.0-litre engine is good for 91kW and 170Nm.

Ford EcoSport

2020 Ford EcoSport. Image: QuickPic

Upgraded trims

All Ambiente models now feature no less than six airbags (dual front, side and curtain airbags), while the Trend and Titanium also incorporate a driver’s knee airbag.

Multimedia functionality remains a stand-out feature of the EcoSport, as the EcoSport Ambiente incorporates Ford’s SYNC with Bluetooth and voice control, as well as two USB ports, six speakers, and a 4.2-inch screen.

The Trend models boast a more sophisticated version of the SYNC infotainment system with a 6.5-inch colour touchscreen, while the Titanium’s SYNC3 features an eight-inch display, as well as embedded turn-by-turn navigation.

Active driving safety features across the board include ABS brakes, electronic stability control (ESC) with traction control (TC), as well as roll stability control (RSC). The 1.0 EcoBoost-powered models are also equipped with hill launch assist (HLA) that makes pulling off on steep inclines easier, along with Ford’s tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS).

Ford EcoSport

2020 Ford EcoSport. Image: QuickPic

Model Range and Recommended Retail Prices:

All EcoSport models come standard with Ford Protect, which includes a four-year/60 000km service plan, three-year unlimited distance roadside assistance, and four-year/120 000km comprehensive warranty. This is complemented by a five-year/unlimited distance corrosion warranty. Service intervals are every 15 000km.

• EcoSport 1.5 Ambiente 5MT                    R279 700

• EcoSport 1.5 TDCi Ambiente 5MT           R289 900

• EcoSport 1.5 Ambiente 6AT                     R297 600

• EcoSport 1.0 EcoBoost Trend 6MT          R319 200

• EcoSport 1.0 EcoBoost Trend 6AT           R333 900

• EcoSport 1.0 EcoBoost Titanium 6MT      R357 000

• EcoSport 1.0 EcoBoost Titanium 6AT       R370 400

Ford EcoSport

2020 Ford EcoSport. Image: QuickPic

Compiled by: Charlen Raymond

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