The Ford EcoSport has been updated, and the highlight is the engine upgrade. The EcoSport diesel now delivers 8.9bhp more power, taking the total output up to 99bhp.
Aside from the LED daytime-running lights and the boot release, which has moved under the handle, there are few changes visible on the outside, but there are some subtle changes to the cabin.
If you are familiar with Ford cars, you’d immediately notice the indicators are on the right instead of being the other way around. There’s the addition of automatic headlamps, too, and to avoid the glare from the headlights of the car trailing you, there’s a new electro chromatic mirror.
The handbrake is draped in leather and has been moved to the left, which is a welcome addition because it was too close to the passenger’s seat belt before and used to result in scraped knuckles. There’s also a chrome pack, which gives chrome highlights to the door handles, instrument cluster rings, power window inserts and AC regulator. While the chrome inserts might be a little overdone, it does liven up the interior.
On the outside, we'd have liked different alloy wheels, and a few more cosmetic upgrades to the overall styling, but it goes without saying that the EcoSport still looks very contemporary; which is perhaps the reason why Ford hasn't fiddled too much with the styling.
So, how does it drive with the uprated motor?
Ford seems to have used a bit more insulation because the engine noise is well damped at idle, and it remains smooth when accelerating, only getting intrusive at high revs. It’s not a drastic change, but refinement levels are noticeably better than before.
The engine delivers very linear acceleration and it’s now even more responsive. The big difference is felt in the way the car picks up speed from low revs and delivers good performance throughout the rev band. You can keep it one gear higher and stay in third in traffic for a longer time, and the car also feels quicker, too.
With this update Ford has addressed all the minor niggles inside the cabin, but it's the engine upgrade that's the icing on the cake. It doesn't result in a major price increase, either, which makes the new EcoSport an even more compelling package.