Ford's idea of a Raptor-ized tiny crossover wasn't half bad. It's a shame it is never going to happen.
Name: Ford EcoSport Storm
Debuted: 2014 São Paulo Motor Show
Specs: Based on the BR-spec EcoSport, front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, 1.6- or 2.0-litre gasoline engine, manual gearbox or continuously variable transmission
Why We Remember It Now?
In light of the EcoSport’s U.S. debut this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show, we’ve decided to revisit the 2014 São Paulo Motor Show where Ford introduced a meaner version of its smallest crossover.
The EcoSport is certainly not one of the most exciting subcompact crossovers out there, even though this new version for America does seem to bring some improvements in certain areas. Essentially a crossover-ized Fiesta, the EcoSport could use a manlier exterior with a rugged body inspired by the F-150 Raptor as it was the case with this concept based on the Brazilian-spec model.
The tough-looking crossover would be more appealing with some additional plastic lower body cladding and prominent front and rear bumpers akin to the F-150 muscle truck. A set of chunky off-road tires would also contribute to make the EcoSport seem more grown up and not just a high-riding Fiesta.
While the old F-150 SVT Raptor had a thumping supercharged V8, its tiny crossover counterpart was envisioned with the 1.6- and 2.0-litre, four-cylinder regular engines of the BR-spec model. A purely hypothetical production EcoSport Storm would have to have some serious muscle underneath its hood to live up to the “Raptor” suffix and at the same time distance itself from its lesser siblings. That being said, the chances of actually happening are virtually none, but at least we can hope a more off-road-oriented visual package is being considered to bring Raptor-like looks without any actual mechanical changes.
Here's hoping the 2014 EcoSport Storm won't be forgotten by Ford and there will be something along the lines of a more hardcore version. Meanwhile, the Indian-built EcoSport in U.S. and Canadian specifications will go on sale early 2018 and is going to cost somewhere in the region of $20,000.