The Ford EcoSport compact SUV model has been revamped with extra style and sharper dynamics – and its rear-mounted spare wheel has been ditched in the process.
The tailgate spare has split opinion among Ford fans and there’s no doubt the decision to make the crossover model available without it – you get a tyre mobility kit instead – will attract more sales.
When the latest EcoSport hits UK streets in October it will cost from £14,245, which means there’s no increase on current prices.
But the cars will come with enhancements like partial leather seats for Titanium models and additional chrome detailing.
There’s also more convenience, courtesy of a Winter Pack featuring heated windscreen, mirrors and front seats plus floor level rear seat ventilation.
And driving dynamics have been improved with revisions to the springs, dampers, power steering settings and Electronic Stability Programme.
The restyled interior has a charcoal black lower instrument panel, centre console and door boards while the instrument cluster now features a light dimming function and chrome-surround rings to match the electric window switches.
In addition, all EcoSport models are equipped with Ford’s SYNC voice-controlled connectivity system with a 4-inch colour display in the centre console.
Stuff like sat-nav and a rear view camera will join the party later in the year.
The engine line-up remains the same, but the 1.5-litre TDCi diesel now has 95PS, a 5PS improvement, and can return 64.2mpg with CO2 emissions of 115g/km.
The 125PS 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol model delivers 52.3mpg and 125g/km of CO2, while the 1.5-litre Ti-VCT diesel engine has the potential for 44.8mpg with emissions of 149g/km.
Ford product development chief Joe Bakaj said: “EcoSport was developed in some of the most rigorous terrains and climates across the globe to make it an even more compelling option for customers as part of our growing European SUV range.”
The car is part of a growing SUV line-up from Ford that also includes the mid-sized Kuga and will be extended to include the Edge SUV early next year.