The 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine is a revolution, it never feels like a 3-pot unit.
Performance – If you notice the pictures above, Ford has skipped on an engine cover. The company says that it rather give a feature which is visible than an engine cover which isn’t seen often. Clearly the EcoSport has gone under heavy cost cutting and even the wipers are single blade ones (the Fiesta has twin blade wipers). Powering the Ford EcoSport are three engines, the 1.5-litre Ti-VCT (mated to a 5-speed manual and 6-speed PowerShift gearbox), a 1.5-litre diesel (mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox) and a 1.0-litre EcoBoost perol engine (mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox). The 1.5-litre petrol and diesel engines will be offered in all 4 variants (Ambiente, Trend, Titanium, Titanium +) but the EcoBoost engine will only be offered in the Titanium and Titanium + variants (in these variants the 1.5-litre petrol engine will be paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission). Ford gave us the 1.0-litre EcoBoost equipped EcoSport to drive at the event (the engine is imported from Romania), as this engine is very unique in India and offers 20% more mileage than a 1.6-litre petrol engine, while delivering same levels of performance. The ARAI claimed mileage is 18.9 km/l.
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The 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine is a three-cylinder unit and has low friction levels and a variable oil pump. It is so small in size that the engine bay looks completely empty. It can fit on a A4 sized paper and Ford has 125 patents to its credit for the EcoBoost technology. Get on to the driver seat and you will appreciate the high driving position which gives good all round visibility. Turn on the car and the EcoBoost engine shows its refinement with almost no vibrations. This engine has got the 2012 International Engine of the year award and it feels splendid right from start up. There is some bit of turbo lag till around 1600 RPM, post which the EcoBoost engine belts out strong performance. Once past 2000 RPM, it pulls strongly to its redline of around 6800 RPM. Power delivery is smooth and the EcoBoost engine doesn’t give a kick in the pants feel but is linear in terms of pull. 0-100 km/hr takes around 10.8 seconds, while the top speed is easily over 190 km/hr. One can cruise at 100 km/hr in top gear with the RPM needle hovering around the 2500 RPM mark.
The 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine gives the EcoSport terrific performance, although there is a fair bit of vibrations through the pedals post 4500 RPM. With 125 PS of power, the EcoSport performs splendidly, we wonder what will happen with the diesel engined car, which is a good 34 PS down on power. Ford claims the EcoSport’s cabin is the quietest in its class and the company has used excessive sound deadening material. The company further claims one can have a civil conversation up to speeds of 130 km/hr without raising their voice. Yes the NVH levels are terrific and the cabin is well insulated from external noises (slight tyre and road noise creeps in at high speeds). The clutch is very light and gearshift is extremely smooth to operate with positive shifts.
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The 1.0-litre EcoBoost engine has set 16 land speed records recently and is simply an outstanding motor for its size. Clever engineering bits have resulted in the driver being clueless for the most part about the 3-cylinder layout, a layout often criticised for being high on vibrations due to its imbalanced nature. Reaching triple digit speeds on the EcoBoost powered EcoSport is very quick and in spite of being a lower displacement motor, it is throughly good with in-gear acceleration too. You simply don’t have to downshift often to get going. Even the sound from the motor is pleasing and Ford has deliberately tuned the exhaust to sound sporty.
EcoBoost engine terrific in performance but it is really the diesel engine which most Ford EcoSport buyers will prefer.
Head over to the next page to read about the dynamics of the Ford EcoSport.