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Old 14th February 2017, 17:49   #1
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Default My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Background
I have been a member of this forum purely to relish in my love for cars and learn about them. I learnt to and started driving a car in 2007, quite late compared to the various enthusiasts we have on this forum, primarily because I come from a lower middle-class background where a car was considered as a luxury rather than a requirement. I personally was yet to settle down in my career so back in 2007, when I had already completed a little over 4 years of my working life, I thought I will ask my parents about buying a small car and the main approval had to come from my mom. And believe me, it took a lot of convincing, sharing the advantages, etc., plus me getting married later that year kind of added fuel to the fire of owning a car.

Finally, when mom gave her approval to purchase a car back then, the only car that came to mind was the humble Alto. I must say this car is very under-rated because of the lack of safety features and space, but it's a great and reliable car and I vouch for that because of the various roadtrips I did in that. Stretched its capability to the max and yet, it never let us down, even in 2015 when it was 8 years old with over 40K on the Odo, suffered various bumps, some underbody mishaps due to my fault, yet never left us stranded anywhere. I can go on and on about this car but I won't because this thread is primarily about my new car and the second car in the family, which I fondly call as 'Cherry' and it's our new Ford Ecosport 1.5 diesel, a June 2016 model.

Please bear with me as I'm not very good with words and lack sense of humor but will try to share as much information as possible. This is my gratitude to this forum, which has taught me a lot about cars and that is how I was able to zero in on the Ford Ecosport as my current car.

I should confess that technically Ecosport is my third car as I had purchased a pre-owned Chevrolet SRV with a 1.6 petrol engine, in my short tenure outside of Hyderabad. The family didn't enjoy it much as they were here in Hyderabad. I owned it for 1.5 years, before I had to move back to Hyderabad and I decided to sell it, rather than bring it here. Again a lovely car, which held high speeds that most cars of today can't handle as well as it did. But with too many dings and dents, I decided to sell it to someone in our office who was enamoured by it.

The decision-making
So coming to my current car, why Ecosport?

Before I list my requirements and considerations, please bear in mind that all observations are personal and do not intend to demean or criticize other cars and manufacturers. With my limited knowledge my observations might be correct or wrong but I'm penning down what I thought would be best for our family when buying a car.

My requirements were as follows:
1. A car that can seat 4+1 comfortably in my family. I'm the tallest at 5'10" in my family so didn't need too spacious cars like the Nissan Sunny.
2. A car that can do long tours without much drama and without worrying about bad roads and underbody hits.
3. A reliable and well-known engine that would last for at least 1 lakh kilometers. But again, this is very much dependent on how it is maintained.
4. A good-looking car, which looks futuristic and will not be out of fashion soon.
5. My preference for body shape was mini-SUV type and wasn't inclined much towards sedans. I wasn't keen on considering MUVs like Innova but was okay to an extent with Ertiga. No offence to anyone here, just my personal preference.
6. My budget was only Rs.10 Lakhs on-road and hence I was looking at features such as airbag, ABS, mobile charging, etc. as mandatory and rest of the features would depend on what we would use and require on a regular basis.
7. Last but not the least, service and maintenance costs. Being pampered by Maruti, this was a tough one to compromise on but I was aware of the emerging service-mindedness of some of the lesser-known brands in our country.

Cars Considered

1. Vitara Brezza: Since this was a newly launched one from Maruti and I was very keen on getting a test-drive or at least a look into this car. Maruti showroom is just walking-distance away from our home so once this car made it to the dealership, wifey and I decided to take a look. Our observations were as follows:
Good
- Looks. I thought the car looked perfect from most angles. The chunky tyres with the right angles and color combos definitely makes this a looker.
- The pain quality seemed really good compared to the usual budget cars that Maruti has.
- The seating seemed comfortable in the front seats.

Not so good
- The rear seats somehow didn't feel very spacious. I'm comparing this spaciousness to Ecosport.
- The steering felt very much like our Alto, with no chunkiness that I expected after seeing the car from outside.
- No test-drives were available at that time, as it was still very new to the marketk
- Waiting period of 4-5 months even if we booked immediately.
- The top-end exceeded our budget, but one version down, there were some compromises to make that we felt were deal-breakers, such as no ACC, fog lights, rear defoggers or wipers, etc.

2. Hyundai Creta: Again a great car but we did not take a test-drive so my observations are only with what I experienced in the showroom.
Good
- Looks premium in and out.
- Looks a size larger than Brezza or Ecosport.
- Great engine as reviewed by other owners on the forum.

Not so good
- Price, Price and Price. For the features offered, a bit expensive but I believe the wonderful engines in this car do deserve a premium, as per the various folks who have driven this car. But this was a major factor in we striking this out of our contention.
- Interior space was a let-down considering this car looked larger from outside but very negligible difference in terms of interior space, compared to Ecosport and Brezza, which is a let-down.

3. Ertiga: I always loved the Ertiga for the versatility it offers and the car doesn't look bad even though it is a MUV. I went to take a test-drive but I was so disappointed with the space it offers that I just refused to take a test-drive and struck this one off the list. I won't dwell on what was good but I found the interior space to be cramped for 3 adults in the backseat and with the last seat down, it was a huge compromise. Somehow this broke my heart as the top-end petrol was within our budget and I was looking forward to more family trips in this car. I just couldn't get over this disappointment for sometime.

4. i20 Active: I wanted to consider this car purely for the peace of mind it offered in terms of higher ground clearance and I was considering the petrol option but the reviews for the petrol 1.2 engine didn't seem very encouraging. Also, when I went for a test-drive only the diesel model was available so I decided to take it for a spin.
Good
- The diesel engine was so eager to rev. I could make out it was just dying to eat up the highways.
- The seating position and interiors seemed perfect ergonomically. I didn't have any complaints here.
- Looked very premium from the inside.

Not so good
- Space seemed slightly lesser than Brezza and Ecosport though not a deal-breaker.
- The top-end diesel was costlier than Ecosport and Brezza and there were no discounts being offered.
- The 1.2 engine is considered as lethargic on highways.
- The mid version didn't have some features, which were mandatory for me.
- The driving position though comfortable, didn't seem as commanding as Brezza or Ecosport.

5. Ecosport: I always loved the way Ecosport looks. With the positive reviews of improvements in service and transparency of Ford, I surely wanted to consider this car. I must say that this was the first car I test drove and hence all other comparisons are relative to this car.
Good
- Looks. I always loved the styling and chunkiness of this car.
- Features in the trend+ version were good enough for our requirements and was within our budget. The value offered, when compared later with other cars seemed to be better comparing price to features.
- The price cuts and the updated engine in early 2016 made this a better value proposition.
- Space seemed adequate for 5 people considering my family members are of average height and build.
- Solid overall feel of the car, from the doors to booth, the interiors and the plastics, everything seemed to be well-built and the test drive car didn't have any rattles.

Not so good
- The grey and black interiors made the interiors look a bit dated and claustrophobic.
- The petrol 1.5 did not have a trend+ model and the ecoboost version had an uncertain waiting period.
- Test drove the petrol 1.5 and found it very sedate. Didn't seem too much upgrade from Alto, although the engine was quiet and seemed to cruise effortlessly.
- The 1.5 diesel that I drove was an older version that my friend owns and even that seemed very linear and nothing exciting but a little more exciting than the petrol.
- Absolutely no discounts on offer.

6. Duster: Although a little expensive in terms of our budget, this car always fascinated me.
Good
- Eats up bad roads for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Other cars which had to slowdown for bad roads, this car made those roads look like smooth carpets.
- Great chunky looking car and the top-end has great features.
- The 110ps version that we test drove was a hoot to drive. Can cruise the highways all day long and will not huff and puff at the end.
- Space was decent.

Not so good
- Ergonomically didn't seem very comfortable in the backseat especially considering this was the most spacious of all the cars we considered.
- Was out of our budget for the version that had ABS and airbags.
- Service concerns of various folks were not very encouraging.
- Petrol versions have a mediocre engine.

Why Ecosport?
After all this research running into a couple of months and umpteen visits and test drives, we zeroed in on the Ecosport trend+ version. The reasons were as follows:

1. The trend+ offered ABS and dual airbags for driver and passenger and hence addressed our basic requirement. With our roads getting dangerous by the day and with cases of accidents where the other person was more at fault, we decided that these two were the least minimum we could have in our next car. Also, the features such like AUX, USB and Bluetooth compatibility, etc. were some of the clinching factors for us, for considering the Trend+ version.

2. The space was adequate for 5 adults, especially for members in our family. Healthy above average adults in the backseat will be a squeeze if there are 3 but in our family we don't have too many tall or hefty adults so the car seemed adequate in this regard.

3. Lot of interior storage space and a practical boot that would suffice for a 4-5 days trip, for 4-5 adults. With nearly 7 cup/bottle holders, some cubby holes and a decent boot, this was again a winner for us.

4. The TDCI engine, which was upgraded to 99bhp is a proven engine and we knew we couldn't go wrong here although our first choice was the Ecoboost 1.0 engine. We also noticed that the infamous turbo lag of diesel engines was almost inexistent, when we took the test-drive in our friend's car, although it was the older engine. Also, the claimed mileage was almost like the Alto and double that of the Chevy SRV. So this also helped us consider the diesel version instead of the petrol.

5. The 200mm of ground clearance was definitely one of the top factors for us. Based on my previous experience with Alto and especially Chevy SRV, which boasted a ground clearance of 185mm but used to scrape on bad roads, due to the soft suspension, made the ground clearance one of the most important factor for us when considering our next car. The stiff suspension of the Ecosport was also a reassurance that the car would not scrape even when fully loaded.

6. Compact size that would be great for city use, our parking and tight spots. I wasn't too convinced about lugging about a huge car in which most of the times there would be just 2 persons. Our family is not much into road trips so I knew that the backseats would be empty most of the time so didn't make much sense for me to consider bigger cars, even if I wanted to stretch the budget for them.

7. Most of the features offered were very much an upgrade for us, when compared to our previous car Alto and to an extent, the Chevy SRV. But we also thought about it a bit futuristically as to the features that are there right now should be useful for at least the next 3-5 years. But we weren't too concerned about things like touch screen or alloy wheels, as wheels could be updated later too.

Booking experience
Finally we booked our car in the last week of April 2016. Our initial choice was the ecoboost trend+ version. We were promised delivery in 3 weeks but we got to know that for some reason the ecoboost versions were put on hold in the production line and hence there was uncertainity on when we could actually get one. We were willing to wait but the dealer wasn't committing on a tentative delivery date. The petrol 1.5 and dielsel versions were readily available with a clear timeline on when we could expect delivery. After some back and forth, some visits to the dealership, interacting with the higher-ups, writing to Ford directly and confirming what the dealer was saying is correct, we decided to go for TDCI. I must say this experience kind of soured our waiting period for our car especially the lack of communication and proactiveness from the dealership.

Only after we met the dealership's GM, things got going and finally on June 18th, we became proud owners of a Mars Red TDCI Ecosport Trend+ version. The delivery day was a bit eventful with we arranging for cash and some timing issues with Citibank, which took extra time but by around 3PM, we were ready to take delivery. Embarrassed to say this but I did a basic PDI of all the essential items in the car, inside and outside and didn't do a thorough PDI as suggested by the teambhp folks, due to all the excitement. The most important thing I rechecked was the VIN for manufacturing date and this came out as 8th June 2016, as confirmed earlier when the sales rep shared the VIN with us when the car was allotted. Gave a small gift to the sales rep who was coordinating things proactively all along after the initial fiasco. Took the keys, filled up some diesel and started for home. It was a memorable day for me more than my family as a long wait came to an end and I finally was a proud owner of a modern mini-SUV. Only petrol-heads can relate to this feeling I know. ;-)

Version chosen - Trend+ TDCI, Mars Red, June 2016 model.

Car Features

Safety
- ABS with EBD.
- 2 airbags for driver and front passenger.
- Remote locking with child lock.
- Child seat anchor points.
- Seatbelt warning.
- speed-sensing door lock (at 15kmph).

Interiors & Convenience
- Dual tone black and grey interiors.
- Automatic climate control.
- Tilt & Telescopic steering.
- Steering-mounted audio controls.
- Anti-glare interior rear view mirror (manual).
- Cabin lamps in front and rear
- Boot lamp.
- 340 litres of boot space.
- 7 cup/bottle holders.
- One 12v charging socket.
- Power windows at front and rear.
- 4 grab handles.

Comfort
- Height adjustable driver seat.
- 4 adjustable headrests.
- Reclining backseat.
- 60:40 split backseat.
- Fabric seats.
- Storage tray under passenger seat.

Instrumentation
- Analog console with tachometer.
- 2 electronic trip meters.
- Digital display shows avg. speed, fuel consumption and distance to empty.
- Warnings for seatbelt (for driver), low fuel warning and for all four doors if not shut properly.
- Headlight adjuster.

ICE
- 2 din music system with 4 speakers.
- USB and Aux compatibility.
- Bluetooth pairs with phone.
- FM Radio.
- Voice commands, although I haven't used yet.

Exteriors & lighting
- Body-colored bumpers, ORVMs and door handles.
- Silver colored roof rails. Available for Trend+ and above.
- Integrated rear spoiler.
- Conventional headlamps with follow-me-home features.
- Front fog lamps.
- Rear windshield wiper with washer and defogger.
- 200mm ground clearance
- Front engine guard. Comes only for diesel versions.

Tyres
- 195/65 15 inch steel wheels.
- Shod with MRF tubeless tyres.
- Spare wheel is of the same spec.

Engine
- 1.5 TDCI engine with 99 bhp.
- Avg. mileage as stated 22.3 kmpl. I usually get around 16-18kmpl in the city.

Costs
On-road cost - 10.2 lakhs in Hyderabad (after nominal freebies)
Freebies - With price cuts in late 2015/early 2016 the dealer was reluctant to offer any more discounts. So after some hard bargaining just got rear parking sensors and the essential kit as free, both of which cost around 12k.
Warranty: Standard 2 years or 1,00,000 kms. warranty. Did not opt for the additional 2 years warranty. Might consider it later.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_5316.jpg

To be continued...

Last edited by saleem_k : 27th February 2017 at 16:17.
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Old 21st February 2017, 19:48   #2
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Default Car Impressions in the last 7 months.

Now to the car itself. As of the last week of Feb 2017, the Odo shows shows the reading as 7008 kms. Yes I know this is quite less especially considering it is a Diesel but I hope to compensate this in the coming months with a couple of long trips planned. My experience with the car has been almost perfect and I say almost because there are a couple of things that are not as they were when we bought the car. Overall, it has been a great experience.

Some Observations:

1. Looks and Build Quality: I love the proportionate dimensions of the car. Looks very funky from the front, and a bit traditional from the back. I feel it's a perfect combination of how a modern car should look and a bigger SUV, with similar design would look smashing. Well I know it's a raised hatch but it definitely has a presence of a mini SUV, unlike some other cars that have been raised to make them pseudo SUVs. Purely personal opinion, no offence to anyone please. The best angle of this car is probably the front angle and the rear 3/4th angle. A 100% profile angle makes the car look like just another car, which it definitely isn't. I also like the back angle with the spare tyre hanging on the rear door. Makes it look more like a SUV. The panel gaps are consistent all over and the paint quality seems top-notch, however, there is a minor irritant in this regard that I will share later. Panel gaps seem to be a little wider at the back around the hatch but they are consistent.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20160625_200646825.jpg

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20160619_163554368.jpg

One another criteria for our selection was the build quality, in terms of solid feel of the car and the doors in particular. I must say that my second car, which was a pre-owned Chevy SRV was responsible for this criteria as it was a solidly built car. Whenever I would open other car doors (read i20 2012 model) after opening the SRV's doors, the difference in feel, in terms of how light the i20 doors felt and the way the doors shut became very evident. We wanted our car to have similar build quality as the SRV. I still think the Ecosport is a slight notch below SRV, which felt much more solid. But Cherry is still a well-built car because a couple of minor incidents where I was rear-ended by a fortuner at slow speeds (<20kmph) and a brush with an Innova's front bull bars to the rear door, at a U-turn and at least 5-6 knocks on the left/right ORVMs and not even a scratch or a dent in these places. However, we noticed slight rattle from the rear hatch recently. This is not very pronounced and doesn't occur always.

2. Interiors and Space: This has been a much debated subject and I must say this car has adequate space for 4 adults and a kid or a medium built adult instead of a kid. The boot is adequate for our needs and has loads of space for 4 adults trip for 4-5 days. In fact it can take much more than that. On a recent trip to a place about 200kms from Hyderabad, we were 6 adults, 3 well to medium built and 3 were elders who were 5'2'' and less. It definitely was a squeeze but managed it well. I would not advice this kind of travel but I think 5 adults can be easily accommodated provided there are a mix and match of heavy to medium build individuals. Yes if someone wants to take pets along, it will definitely be a problem in this car, if there are more than 3 individuals in the car. The under-thigh support seems adequate at front and back. I won't say it's as cushioning as a Honda City but then it's not as bad as Brezza.

Space at back with the driving seat set to my height 5'10''.
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125510.jpg

Front seats as per my driving preference.
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125526.jpg

The black and grey interiors definitely camouflage a lot of smudges and other stuff so are practical but not necessarily look premium like the Hyundai offerings. The space around the foot well is decent for the driver. The only complaint I have is the steering rod sometimes fouling with my left foot when using the clutch. I had to change my driving style a bit here as I was used to pressing the clutch at nearly 50% of the sole. Now I got used to pressing the clutch at the top 25% of the sole, else my shoes would foul with the steering rod, which although covered feels a little odd to feel, especially when turning.

Also, I must make a special mention of the AC. The ACC is a chiller. Even after an hour in the hot sun, it took less than 3 minutes to cool the car when the temperature was set to 22 degrees centigrade. This beats the AC we had in Alto, which was considered a chiller itself. 80% of the driving I do is usually with the AC on. Depending on the cooling required and fan speed the AC will sound a bit vocal, especially if trying to cool below 20 degrees centigrade.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125754.jpg

3. Ride Quality: Coming from an Alto, the Ecosport is definitely an improvement and this won't be a fair comparison. However, the SRV's ride quality was excellent except for the soft suspensions, which would sometime make the car wobble a bit at high speeds on slight undulations and the wheel balancing issues let down SRV a bit. No such problems in Ecosport. The body roll is well-controlled, however one will feel it if negotiating a decent curve at more than average speeds. On some occasions, I had to brake suddenly and still the car would come to a standstill in a straight line without any nervousness. I can safely say that this is probably the best aspect of this car.

When doing long distances on the highways at high speeds the steering needs slight adjustment from time to time to keep the car straight in the intended direction. The EPS steering feels light at low speeds and weighs up well when doing high-speeds but I feel that the hydraulic steering on the SRV was much better to use, especially on highways.

The car rides a little hard and that can be felt easily on bad roads, especially at slow speeds. I think this is a small compromise for this car, which otherwise feels very smooth a comfortable to ride. The front suspensions sometime however feel like they do not take the bumps as smoothly as they should, at some steep speed-breakers. If you go over a speed breaker at slightly higher than normal speed the car would land with a thud and use up the entire suspension. Guess the travel of the front suspensions is not as much as they should be. On our return from Goa to Hyderabad, we missed a speed-breaker and the car jumped (at speeds around 50kmph) and landed and the front suspensions sounded like they got used up entirely and took a strong thud. Thankfully nothing happened and the car brought us safely to Hyderabad.

4. Riding Position: The height adjustable seats and the tilt and telescopic steering help find the perfect driving position. I personally prefer a slightly higher seating rather than sitting scooped out low. The driving position and view is quite commanding from the driver seat. A friend was a bit surprised by the view and the height. Definitely better view compared to what I used to get in an Alto or SRV.

However, the view in the IRVM is limited and it is imperative to have rear parking sensors as minimum requirement. As you can see in the pics below, the view is quite limited due to the thick D pillars.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_131413.jpg

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125654.jpg

Another aspect one has to be careful about are the thick A pillars. Many a times, I have noticed that a biker or a pedestrian can completely be hidden them and I have to bend or stretch backwards in heavy traffic while negotiating turns to ensure no one is hidden by the A pillar and I'm seeing everyone.

5. Engine: The diesel engine is probably the best part of Ecosport. At slow speeds I have to control the turbo surge of the car as it seems very eager. In the city in crawling traffic, I just have to remove my feet from the clutch for the car to move forward. The turbo seems to work enthusiastically and starts pulling even from a low 1-1.1k rpm.. I have hardly felt any lag at low speeds and especially coming from two petrol cars, I didn't feel much difference at low speeds where the diesels are infamous for the turbo lags. The extra 9bhp in the new 2016 version also helps I believe.

The engine sounds like a typical diesel even when idling, not as silent as the Hyundai's 1.4 diesel engine but not as loud as my neighbor's VW TDI engine. The car sounds throaty at high cruising speeds but definitely not too loud. This can be dealt with by playing music in the car. The car does a leisurely 2.2k rpm in 5th gear when touching 100kmph, which I believe is a safe cruising speed on our highways.

6. Gear shifts: The gears slot perfectly. I haven't faced a single situation where I experienced false or incomplete slotting. The reverse also slots easily. Sometimes in Alto, I would have to move the car to the front a little when slotting reverse but nothing of that sort happened with Ecosport, till now. Someone told me that diesel cars have a heavy clutch. I don't feel any such thing when compared to my previous cars.

7. ICE: Not much to talk about here but I like listening to songs when I'm driving. I always keep a pen drive loaded with songs connected to the USB slot and play songs. Sometimes we listen to FM. The speakers are quite good and they make the bass sound really good. Something that I missed in Alto and SRV to an extent.

The layout of the center console is decent and easy to use. The buttons are intuitive and can be learnt to operate easily. The Bluetooth sync with the phones is seamless. I was able to pair my iPhone as well as a couple of my Android phones, without any issue.
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125616.jpg

Steering-mounted audio controls. In the last 7 months, on a couple of occasions, I noticed that the previous and next buttons wouldn't work as expected and the USB must be restarted for the buttons to work. Otherwise I haven't faced any other issues.
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170226_125626.jpg

8. Tyres: These have been the underdogs till now. My car comes with MRF 15-inch 195/65 tyres and they don't find much favour on our forum. However, I must say I am quite happy with their performance so far. No flat tyres encountered yet and on our trip to Hampi and Goa, we came across a stretch of nearly a kilometer with just sand the stones and I must say Cherry handled it really well. Probably the car's handling will improve with better tyres but I personally haven't found anything to complain about till now. Top models get 16" alloys and the upcoming model is slated to get 17" alloys, which look mind-blowing.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20160619_173329843.jpg

9. Overall NVH levels: The overall NVH levels in the car are good, not excellent. The windows/glasses do a good job of filtering outside noise, especially from the engine. The wind noise is well-controlled when cruising on highways and when the windows are all up but will hear the gruff of the diesel engine. The tyre noise also tends to creep in a little bit but I believe this would depend on the quality and type of tyres being used. Since there are hardly any rattles in the car, the silence inside the car is good and I prefer driving like that, especially in the city, with all the honking around. The vibrations from the doors are felt when playing music, as the speakers are in the door. Also, I feel a very very faint shudder in the car when the AC is on and the car is idling. I've mentioned about this in more detail in dislikes section. The clutch pedal does seem to transmit the vibrations but are very faint. The gear lever doesn't vibrate or transmit any vibrations unlike what we experienced in Alto.

8. Ground Clearance: This was our main criteria when considering different cars. If you see, most of the cars that we considered had higher than normal ground clearance. Till date I only had a slight brush in the front, on very bad roads around a lake in Hyderabad. Apart from that, even in our long sojourns, we never faced any underbody hits although we encountered some really bad roads. But like you see in the pic below, the front guard will tend to take the hit first and probably will slag overtime and might need replacement. As of now, this is a big peace of mind for us as we don't worry about going into interior villages or roads around Hyderabad, which we earlier did and sometimes would abandon our pursuit of some unknown wanderings due to bad roads that we would come across. Cherry takes us to places without we having to think twice on whether to venture ahead or not.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_5492.jpg

9. Brakes: Brakes are very sharp. I have to be very careful that I don't hit the brakes too hard in slow speeds. On some occasions, where bikers/cyclists would make sudden turns or lane changes, we were able to stop smoothly in a straight line even when doing decent speeds.

Some dislikes:

There is nothing much to dislike in Cherry, probably I'm too enamoured with it right now but haven't really faced any major issues. The couple of irritants are as follows:

1. Rattle: There is a faint rattle from the tailgate and it's so faint that if listening to songs, one won't notice that much. Moreover this doesn't happen always. Unable to ascertain when the rattle starts. But this can be attributed to a minor rear-end that happened by a Fortuner, as mentioned earlier in the review. However, I have seen this as a common complaint amongst the many owners we have on the forum.

2. Paint Quality: Now this baffles me a bit. I noticed a slight paint chip on the rear door, quite far from the door handles and the other one, again very minor on the rear door's outer rim. I can understand the one on the outer rims as it could have been caused by bags, bangles or any other things coming in contact, however the other one baffles me because I don't think it could have been caused by any contact. Not sure what's happening here but a bit disappointed with this as elsewhere the paint looks top notch even after 8 months. A paint chip in the front would probably be caused by a flying pebble or sand from lorries carrying such materials but I still don't understand how the paint got chipped on the rear door. I noticed this only after 7 months of ownership.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170205_172115.jpg

3. Slight shudder when idling:There is also one more thing that I noticed that I made a short mention of under the NVH secion earlier. I feel a very faint shudder when idling, for e.g. at a traffic signal. This seems to occur especially when the AC is on and the RPM seems to be slightly higher at idling when compared to the idling when AC is switched off. Initially I thought there is no change in RPM but I observed today and I noticed that the RPM is slightly higher when AC is on, and rises and falls every 30 seconds or so. Is this common or should I bring this up during the second service? This is something that I feel a little more than others as my feet are on the pedals and they do transmit the vibrations more, compared to when my feet are on the floor of the car.

Pictures below for reference:
RPM without AC
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170224_150705.jpg

RPM with AC
My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20170224_150913.jpg

4. Lights: The headlamps seem very inadequate for the highways. I constantly have to put on the high beams, which I personally don't like doing. This was a major drawback that I encountered on a couple of our return trips to Hyderabad, on highways. The situation gets much worse when the highway is a two-laned highway without a road divider. I would like to upgrade but probably after the second service is done. Suggestions on brand and specifications are most welcome. How about going for an extra pair of Hellas instead?

Experience with first service
For the first service, the only thing that is done is to ensure the car is good and nothing is broken or not working as expected. I didn't want to change the oil as well and decided to get it changed at the scheduled 10k service. We planned for Goa trip so gave it for the first service when the Odo was at around 1,900 kms. The first service interval is scheduled at 2,500 kms. The second at 10k and after that every service is schedule at 10k intervals. The first service was free and I was charged nothing as Cherry was doing great. However, the Ford ASS guys tried to go overboard with polishing the inside plastics and it was a badly executed job in the sense that at some places the polish was still sticky and at some places the work wasn't done to satisfaction.

Additional things purchased for Cherry
1. Vacuum cleaner: I purchased a Bergmann Tornado vacuum cleaner for the car from Amazon. I must say the long snozzle in this one does a really good job of picking up dust and small stones. I use it for about 20 minutes with a single break in between as it tends to get heated a bit. I also switch on my car during this time and do not rely only on the 12v socket as I fear it might drain the battery.

2. Bosch air pump: Haven't used it yet. So can't say how good or bad this is.

3. Cloth dusters: Purchased Jopasu and 3M cloth dusters from Amazon. I use these only for dry wiping and they do a really good job. These are washable and don't lose their wiping ability after a wash unlike normal cloth dusters.

What's pending?
- Haven't been able to get the 3M coating and underbody protection done. Some heavy expenses in the last few months are not permitting this. Probably should have got this done before the paint got chipped. :-(

- Tyres will be upgraded but probably after 2 years of ownership. Based on what the 2017 Ecosport gets, I might go for similar profile wheels.

- Team-BHP stickers were ordered long back but haven't put a single one yet. Wife feels it spoils the clean look at the back. How blasphemous is that!!!

- Might upgrade the lights too as they seem inadequate on a highway.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_5318.jpg

A small tip for Hyderabadis:
I recently got a speeding ticket on the KBR road that connects to Jubilee hills. The speed limit on this wonderful road is 50kmph and I wasn't aware of this. Just ensure you stick to the speed limit as the police keeps a watch with laser guns, on this particular stretch. I touched 66kmph and I got a ticket.

Last but not the least, I would thank each and every member of the forum whose threads and posts I read everyday in the last 10 years, which ultimately helped me in the car-buying process. I hope to keep this thread updated regularly with my experiences.

Thank you for reading. I will share more pics, as and when I keep updating the thread.

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-img_20160710_181742045.jpg

My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi-psx_20161204_183036.jpg

The End.

Last edited by saleem_k : 27th February 2017 at 16:27.
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Old 27th February 2017, 16:55   #3
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Initial Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 28th February 2017, 09:52   #4
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Let me be the first to congratulate you. Last year when I was on a car hunt, the ecosport was a strong contender but went for the Scross solely because of the powerful 1.6 motor. For mods regarding lights you can go through the ownership thread by bhpian ecosport rules, he has fitted a pair of Hellas and gels well with the stance-
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...-india-33.html (My Silver Ford EcoSport Titanium (O) TDCi. First delivered in India!)

Again wishing you all the very best.
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Old 28th February 2017, 10:23   #5
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Hearty congratulations on your new ride. You made a really smart choice. It suits your requirements perfectly. It was always a great looker; I am sure it will give you many years of trouble free service.
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Old 28th February 2017, 12:45   #6
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Heartiest congratulations to you. Ecosport seem to tick most of the boxes for you. I'm in the market for a new car and currently there is no car available (except TUV 300) which satisfies all my requirements. I need a diesel automatic compact SUV. Don't know if Ford will launch diesel Ecosport AT.
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Old 28th February 2017, 13:50   #7
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Thumbs up Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congrats on your new acquisition, and welcome to the Ecosport owners/lovers club! Wish you many many miles of smiles..

I got mine (must be a rare breed in the forum - 1.5Petrol Titanium) in Dec2015, and am smitten by the buggy as yet! I second almost all the opinions/observations that you pointed out. I've been too lazy to spend time and put up a decent review!

Have taken Eku on some long trips, and he behaves excellently. Coming from Hyundai i10, this has been a definite step-up, though it's actually a bigger hatch and not without its limitations like low torque. And during the purchase process, I too compared lot many options - slightly quirky range - Tata Zest/Hyundai Xcent/Maruti Scross 1.3/TUV 300 etc., and settled for Eku for which I'm very happy. He has not let me down at any time and enjoying the ride thoroughly.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:09   #8
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Quote:
Originally Posted by rakesh_r View Post
Let me be the first to congratulate you. Last year when I was on a car hunt, the ecosport was a strong contender but went for the Scross solely because of the powerful 1.6 motor. For mods regarding lights you can go through the ownership thread by bhpian ecosport rules, he has fitted a pair of Hellas and gels well with the stance-
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...-india-33.html (My Silver Ford EcoSport Titanium (O) TDCi. First delivered in India!)

Again wishing you all the very best.
Thank you Rakesh. I understand that for enthusiasts S-Cross with the 1.6 engine makes the most sense. I don't think 1.5TDCI comes anywhere close to 1.6's performance. Thank you so much for sharing the link on the hellas. I remember reading that thread earlier but might have slipped out of my mind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Enobarbus View Post
Hearty congratulations on your new ride. You made a really smart choice. It suits your requirements perfectly. It was always a great looker; I am sure it will give you many years of trouble free service.
Thank you Enobarbus. Touchwood, it should definitely last longer than most cars, considering my smooth driving style.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ford_d_Kool View Post
Heartiest congratulations to you. Ecosport seem to tick most of the boxes for you. I'm in the market for a new car and currently there is no car available (except TUV 300) which satisfies all my requirements. I need a diesel automatic compact SUV. Don't know if Ford will launch diesel Ecosport AT.
Thank you Ford_d_Kool. I can understand the dilemma as I myself had gone through this phase a lot of times and I know how frustrating and sometimes disappointing it can get. I don't have any information on whether Ford will launch a diesel automatic or not but definitely do read through the TUV 300s threads on our forum, which unfortunately mention quite some issues with the TUV. Kindly consider all factors and not just the 'automatic' part in isolation for your purchase decision. All the best!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KrisTvpm View Post
Congrats on your new acquisition, and welcome to the Ecosport owners/lovers club! Wish you many many miles of smiles..

I got mine (must be a rare breed in the forum - 1.5Petrol Titanium) in Dec2015, and am smitten by the buggy as yet! I second almost all the opinions/observations that you pointed out. I've been too lazy to spend time and put up a decent review!

Have taken Eku on some long trips, and he behaves excellently. Coming from Hyundai i10, this has been a definite step-up, though it's actually a bigger hatch and not without its limitations like low torque. And during the purchase process, I too compared lot many options - slightly quirky range - Tata Zest/Hyundai Xcent/Maruti Scross 1.3/TUV 300 etc., and settled for Eku for which I'm very happy. He has not let me down at any time and enjoying the ride thoroughly.
Thank you KrisTvpm. Eku is a cute name, just like the car is. I agree that the low torque is an irritant and kind of changed my decision to go ahead with a diesel. Please do put up an ownership review as I believe that on our forum there are very limited reviews on the 1.5 petrol and folks would definitely love to read your experience with this engine. Great to know that you are enjoying the ownership to the full and here's wishing both our cars a long, fulfilling and a reliable life ahead.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:10   #9
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congratulations for being a proud owner of a Cherry Red Steed.

The Ecosport was amongst the top contenders while finalizing my new cars. The requirement to have a large boot and low slung profile made me rule it out. Nonetheless the Ecosport is a wonderful machine and serves its duties faithfully like a committed warrior. Nice choice of color, by the way.


Wishing you many many miles of happy motoring.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:23   #10
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Quote:
Originally Posted by King_pin09 View Post
Congratulations for being a proud owner of a Cherry Red Steed.

The Ecosport was amongst the top contenders while finalizing my new cars. The requirement to have a large boot and low slung profile made me rule it out. Nonetheless the Ecosport is a wonderful machine and serves its duties faithfully like a committed warrior. Nice choice of color, by the way.


Wishing you many many miles of happy motoring.
Thank you King_pin09. Just want to clarify that like I mentioned earlier in the review, the colour is officially known as 'Mars Red'. Cherry is the name I use to address the car. All the best for this phase of finalizing the car; I know how challenging this part of the car buying experience can get.
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Old 28th February 2017, 15:58   #11
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congratulations on your new ride Saleem!

Very well written and detailed write up of your entire experience. Gives a lot of information to folks planning their next cars upgrading from a small entry level hatch.

Cheers mate!
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Old 1st March 2017, 10:31   #12
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congratulations on your purchase!
Let me add my two bits on some points you've mentioned in your post:
1. Tailgate rattle - looks like a known issue with all Ecosports and even I've been facing the same. The only solution is to regularly get the tailgate lock assembly cleaned and greased.
2. Stock Headlights - The lesser we discuss about it the better! It's pathetic. I've recently upgraded to the Philips Extremevision Plus 60/55W and am very happy with the performance. The best part is that these are plug and play bulbs and do not require additional relay and wiring harness.
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Old 1st March 2017, 10:41   #13
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congratulations on your new ride!!! Enjoy
A well compiled review and it mirrors the dilemma I am in. I am currently in the same boat as you were a year ago. Did you consider the SCross 1.3?
I am confused slightly between a Ecosport TDCi and SCross 1.3 and have postponed the decision to later in the year as both the vehicles are due for a facelift!!
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Old 1st March 2017, 12:46   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nikhil_d1106 View Post
Congratulations on your new ride!!! Enjoy
A well compiled review and it mirrors the dilemma I am in. I am currently in the same boat as you were a year ago. Did you consider the SCross 1.3?
I am confused slightly between a Ecosport TDCi and SCross 1.3 and have postponed the decision to later in the year as both the vehicles are due for a facelift!!
If you're considering the S-Cross, 1.6 is the way to go. 1.3 might be a tad underpowered.
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Old 1st March 2017, 13:32   #15
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Default Re: My 'Cherry' Ford EcoSport 1.5L TDCi

Congratulations on your Cherry ride!

Being an Ecosport owner for around an year, i could relate to most of your view points.This TDCI is an amazing peppy engine to drive on. You have done a great job on write up with more distinctive view points and made this interesting.

Some bits to relive:
Engine Eagerness: I come from a petrol and was definitely new to handle and control this surge in 2nd and 3rd gears. Whenever i drive this to its full capabilities it always brings a smile on my face.
Rattles: I had few rattles for running over bad roads including tailgate which is a common issue. Greasing is the solution.
Paint Quality: I too have a similar paint chipping as yours. Its normally a flying pebble from other vehicles on highway. Stay far from those stone loaded trucks.
Headlights: Surely agree with you . In order to overcome this i switch on Fog lights(Never use this in city) on long night drives with headlight high beam adjusted to 1. This is the only way i found benefiting on dark nights. Need to upgrade but SA suggests some warranty issue due to over heating.
Breaking: very sharp. i too get worried with others tailgating on hard breaking in city when encountering autowalas/biker stunts.
Ride quality: With R16 MRF shoes i really found this difficult to digest initially. Now i got used to this and manage rite speeds on bad roads and humps.
Quote:
Originally Posted by saleem_k View Post
Background
You have made right choice as per your requirements. Keep munching miles.Drive safe.
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