Ford EcoSport Subcompact SUV Likely Headed Stateside
Tailgate-Mounted Spare Likely to Disappear
In January, Ford President of the Americas Joe Hinrichs said the company was planning on adding four new SUVs to the company’s U.S. lineup. At least one is believed to be a Lincoln model. However, Ford is the bread-and-butter brand for SUVs, and it’s believed the Blue Oval is going to get most of the models. One is thought to be a revival of the Bronco nameplate. Indications are now growing stronger that the other will likely be a U.S.-market version of the global EcoSport subcompact SUV. Automotive News notes that camouflaged EcoSport models are being seen more frequently driving around Dearborn, Michigan, near Ford headquarters.
The smallest SUV model Ford currently sells in the U.S. market is the compact Escape. GM has seen surprising success with the Buick Encore and Chevrolet Trax subcompact crossovers. The Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 have likewise proven popular with customers, as has the Fiat-based Jeep Renegade. The global EcoSport model sports a Wrangler-like tailgate-mounted spare, a feature that’s likely to disappear with the U.S. market model. In terms of powertrains, it’s likely the base engine would be Ford’s 1.0L I-3 EcoBoost, with the 1.5L I-4 EcoBoost possibly offered as an option. It’s believed the U.S.-spec EcoSport could reach showrooms in 2017 as a 2018 model and will likely be sourced from Thailand, India or Mexico.
Source: Automotive News