Driving in Metro Manila is no picnic. It gets hard (Read: real hard), especially with the hectic rush hours, the long stoplights, motorists who cut in front of you, and plenty of road rage.
Luckily, there are vehicles such as the Ford EcoSport that have features that could help motorists get through the day – whether it’s a brisk Sunday morning drive, or while stuck in a workweek of Carmageddon.
- Street smart and eco-friendly
The subcompact SUV delivers its message of being street smart with its 6-speed automatic transmission that will deliver better fuel economy, a quieter operation, and less vibration.
For those not familiar with the term, a 6-speed automatic transmission uses six different drive gears which gives the motorist the best combination of fuel economy and power.
This means the EcoSport will operate in a speed range where it has the best performance with the least fuel consumption.
- Keyless entry and push-button start
While the push-start ignition button is nothing new, it is one of the convenient innovations of Ford, along with its keyless entry.
There will no longer be the hassle of fumbling for your car keys when you have your key fob with you. Once within range of your car (90cm radius of the vehicle), the key fob’s system senses it and you can just automatically pull on the front door handles and it’ll unlock.
Then all you need to do is put your foot on the brake and press the start button and drive away. It’s simple, but saves you time, especially when you need to rush to what’s next on your agenda.
- 8-inch LCD touchscreen infotainment unit
At the center of the Ford EcoSport dashboard is the hard to miss 8-inch LCD touchscreen infotainment unit, which is powered by Ford’s SYNC 3. It supports Apple Carplay and Android Auto which helps you utilize apps such as Waze and Spotify. You can set it up to see Waze directions on screen, which is much easier than checking it on your smartphone.
- Rear-view camera
A bonus to the 8-inch LCD touchscreen is that it turns into a rear-view camera for when you need to park your Ford EcoSport. This is always a plus for motorists as parking can get tricky at times, especially parallel parking. Don’t get us started on when we have to parallel park and there’s another vehicle waiting on us to get it over with so they can pass through.
- Digital instrument panel and steering wheel audio controls
The Ford EcoSport has gone digital with its digital instrument panel. It acts as a speedometer, shows your fuel consumption, and there’s a settings menu for your EcoSport which you can control with your steering wheel.
You can also manage the infotainment unit with the controls on your steering wheel, which is pretty cool since you can configure your music without having to take your eyes off the road. Pro-tip: no more leaving the music up to your shotgun passenger.
- Power moonroof with sunshade
The Ford EcoSport comes with its a power moonroof and sunshade. Not many vehicles have this function, which makes this street smart car all the more impressive. You can easily let sunlight or moonlight stream in with the touch of a button.
Rear passengers can also stand up through the moonroof and enjoy the view, but only when it’s safe (and legal) to do so. Road safety is always vital.
- Accessible connectivity ports and climate control at the center console
We spend a lot of our downtime in our vehicles, which is why keeping our smartphones humming and charged in the background is always essential. The Ford EcoSport has two-fast charging USB ports at the center console and climate control all in one place.
- Additional set of lock and unlock buttons for rear passengers
While there’s already a lock and unlock button placed on the driver’s door handle, the Ford EcoSport also integrates a thoughtful additional set of lock and unlock buttons for rear passengers placed behind the adjustable armrest.
- Additional cupholders for rear passengers
Another win for rear passengers is the additional foldable cup holders placed in between the two seats. There’s also a 12V accessory socket at the back so rear passengers can charge their devices.
- Customizable cargo area
You can utilize the space in the back of your EcoSport with the adjustable rear load floor where you can stow away your stuff.
You can split the rear seats 60:40, or tumbled against the front seats. You get 335 liters with the rear seats up, and 1,178 liters with them down.
It’s useful for weekend warriors who like to go out of town, or those into sporty activities, or those who just came from the grocery store.
- Ability to drive through potholes and shin-deep floods
Manila is riddled with potholes, but that doesn’t mean this bad boy can’t take it. The EcoSport has 17-inch Alloy wheels and a ground clearance of 209mm.
Its suspension can take on the surprise potholes along the road, as well as shin-deep floods. We do not recommend driving potholes just for the heck of it, but if unavoidable, you don’t need to worry about damaging your new ride.
- Hill start assist
Life is an uphill battle, and whenever we’re climbing those hills, it gets hard. We have to hit the brakes to rest, and sometimes we stumble backwards. But not anymore.
The EcoSport’s hill start assist holds the brake for a few seconds after you take your foot off, which gives you time to smoothly accelerate away, without rolling or losing control. If there are others stopped close behind you, fret not, for this will be a lifesaver in those uphill moments.
Manila traffic has always been unkind and takes a toll on your gas consumption. But these neat features will help you save gas, both in Carmageddon and on long roadtrips.
Words by: Kaka Corral
Photos by: Waltz Siy and Lucky Alabado
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