The Ford EcoSport has been on the market in South Africa for nearly a decade but is still selling strongly. Now the Dearborn-based firm’s local division has added a new EcoSport Active variant to the range.
Before we get into the details, let’s take a step back and consider the future of the EcoSport badge. Ford’s local division currently sources its EcoSport units from two plants: the base Ambiente variants come from the soon-to-be-shuttered Chennai facility in India, while the mid-and top-spec Trend and Titanium derivatives are shipped in from Romania.
Rumour has it production will have ceased at both of these plants by the close of the year, spelling the end for the nameplate globally. Still, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa has told us the EcoSport will “remain on sale in South Africa throughout 2022”, even if it has already confirmed the end of the road for the Fiesta and Figo.
The EcoSport Active model (which was revealed in Europe back in late-2020) is sourced from Romania and is based on the mid-spec EcoSport Trend automatic and is therefore powered by Ford’s familiar 1.0-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine offering 92 kW and 170 Nm of torque and is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Well, the EcoSport Active gains a more rugged exterior appearance chiefly thanks to the fitment of black plastic wheel-arch cladding. In addition, the grille (as well as the headlight and foglamp bezels) are finished in black, as are the front and rear skirts.
The EcoSport 1.0 Active is further differentiated by its black-painted roof (with black roof rails), black mirror caps and black 17-inch alloy wheels. Buyers can choose from 4 body colours, including Frozen White, Luxe Yellow, Solar Silver and Magnetic Dark Grey.
Inside, you’ll find leather upholstery with Active badging as well as a multi-functional, leather-trimmed steering wheel. An 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen is included and offers both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay functionality.
In terms of safety, the EcoSport Active offers 7 airbags, ABS with EBD, brake assist, electronic stability control and hill launch assist.