Ford Ecosport: Eco = economical vehicle Sport = design / lifestyle. Ford South Africa has recently launched it’s new compact urban SUV, the EcoSport, and Live Eco got to put it’s green credentials to the test a couple of weeks ago in Durban.
Why pick the new Ford EcoSport?
At first glance, from the back, it reminds me of the Terios but when you look at the EcoSport from the front angle, it has a powerful, muscular, front head design with the Ford Family grill. If you are looking for a change in lifestyle or you just want to say you drive a “SUV”, need more space or are in need of a more fuel efficient, economical B-SUV then the new Ford EcoSport could be the car for you.
The Ford EcoSport combines performance with economy, responsiveness with smoothness, thanks to an advanced powertrain range fronted by the award-winning 1.0l EcoBoost® engine. The urban SUV features the patented 1.0l three-cylinder engine, first introduced in South Africa in the Fiesta earlier this year.
The smallest engine in its class, Ford’s 1.0l EcoBoost engine is big on power, torque and refinement. Producing 92 kW of power and peak torque of 170 Nm, the quiet and smooth-running engine delivers power and performance that rivals a traditional 1.6l petrol engine. With 25 percent fewer moving parts, the three-cylinder EcoBoost is able to deliver superior fuel economy and lower emissions.
Tiny enough to fit on a sheet of A4 paper or stow away in an airplane overhead luggage compartment, the 1.0l EcoBoost enhances Ford’s growing global family of EcoBoost engines also available in the Fiesta, Fiesta ST, Focus ST and the new Kuga.
Ford’s EcoBoost technology, which holds more than 125 patents, combines direct fuel injection, turbocharging and variable valve timing to enable a downsized engine to gain fuel economy by up to 20 percent over larger engines with no loss of performance.
The 1.0l EcoBoost also debuts many new technologies never before seen in a Ford vehicle such as:
- The super-small, light, and extremely responsive turbocharger delivers power quickly when the throttle is open from low rpm. The turbocharger’s ability to reach nearly 250,000 rpm results in virtually no turbo lag and the engine’s peak torque of 170 Nm over 1,400-4,500 rpm is more than enough for drivers to pull away and overtake easily
- The exhaust manifold is cast into the cylinder head so the exhaust gases can be water-cooled to enable optimum fuel-to-air ratio across a wider rev band
- The unique cast iron block warms the engine quicker than a conventional aluminium block, cutting the amount of “warm-up” energy required by 50 percent and increasing fuel economy
- The “split-cooling” system has separate thermostats for the cylinder head and block to allow quick warm-up
- Two main engine drive belts are immersed in oil to deliver a quieter, more efficient engine while the variable oil pump ensures optimal oil pressure across the full speed range
The EcoSport will also be available with the global 1.5l four-cylinder petrol engine, which delivers peak power of 82 kW at 6,300 rpm and peak torque of 138 Nm at 4,400 rpm.
An Aerodynamic Shape
Unlike passenger sedans, an SUV does not naturally lend itself to an aerodynamic shape. That’s why the design and engineering teams spent a year and a half shaping the body of the EcoSport to make it more efficient when slicing through the air. They spent 160 hours in the wind tunnel tweaking mere millimetres and put in more than 10,000 hours on computational fluid dynamics simulations to find the perfect silhouette. Their hard work resulted in an outstanding drag coefficient of 0.371 on the EcoSport.[youtube_sc url=”http://youtu.be/F_XvfQUsDnU” title=”Ford%20Ecosport”]
Some examples of the aerodynamic actions include:
- A slight rise at the end of the bonnet to eliminate areas of turbulence
- Front baffle built into the bumper to avoid recirculation of air and improve airflow under the vehicle
- Improved sealing between the bonnet and the front grille
- The raked A-pillar and tilted side mirrors are designed to also reduce wind noise
- Air deflectors in front of the rear tyres
- D-pillar kicker to propel air flow
From a slippery, fuel-efficient shape to engines that are both powerful and economical, every possible effort has been made to ensure that the EcoSport takes you to where you want to go, without hurting your pocket. Fuel efficiency is a standout feature with a combined cycle figure of just 4.6l/100km* ensuring the EcoSport is kind on the pocket. Starting at R199,000 for the 1.5 Ambiente, we suggest you book a test drive now!