New images show Ford’s Fiesta-based small SUV, which will replace the Ecosport in the firm’s range, carrying out winter testing.
The new compact crossover has been photographed sporting heavily disguised Fiesta-based bodywork but with a clear SUV-style raised ride height.
The as-yet-unnamed model, which could retain the Ecosport nameplate or take on a new identity more closely aligned to the Fiesta, will serve as a replacement for the ageing Ecosport as the smallest model in Ford’s SUV range.
Linking the styling of the new car closer to the Fiesta could help Ford increase its competitiveness in the fast-growing crossover market. The Fiesta was the best-selling car in Britain in 2018, while the Ecosport has long struggled against rivals such as the Nissan Juke and Seat Arona.
The car is set to share a platform – and possibly an engine range, including the popular Ecoboost petrol powertrains – with the Fiesta. That means it’s likely to be front-wheel drive, although a four-wheel-drive system could potentially be carried over from the current Ecosport.
It will sit alongside the Fiesta Active, a jacked-up version of the supermini.
Ford has not specified when the new compact SUV will be unveiled, but a launch is expected within the next two years as the Ecosport has been available in its current form for six years.