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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We're that close to ordering an Ecosport Titanium with the 125bhp petrol engine.. We test drove a Sport model yesterday with stiffer suspension and 17" wheels and my wife found the ride a bit hard. We have a VW Tiguan at the moment and the typically firm ride is one of its very few downsides. Can anyone tell me what the ride of the Titanium model with more compliant suspension and 15" wheels is like? I know - it's all very subjective but I'd appreciate someone's views of the ride if at all possible.
Also, can the Titanium model (with rear view camera) carry a reduced size spare wheel under the floor in the back?
Finally, what do people think are the downsides of this car - if any? I was very impressed when I drove the Sport model yesterday. Unfortunately the local garage doesn't have a Titanium version in with 15" wheels.
Thanks in advance.
Geoff
 

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Well Geoff 64, we have a 2018 Titanium with an auto box. You do not say if you will buying new or S/H. When we went to try the Ecosport all they had was a ST with a manual box. Despite some years since driving a manual I had no problems. As to ride coming from a Jazz with cart springs for suspension we find the Titanium very comfortable. The test drive in the ST ( bigger engine) was on rough roads but I cannot honestly remember the ride being harsh. I think you will find the wheels are 17 inch, again after the 16inch on the Honda there is no comparison. There are reports of leaning in corners, well I find you have to really push it into a corner to get it to lean. Perhaps the seats being very grippey help I see you are in France, perhaps the Euro version is different but as the Ecosport is made in Romania I should think it would be the same spec. It does depend on what engine you have in the VW but the 1 ltre Ecoboost is no sluggard. The blind spot created by the thick A frame pillars I do not notice as the Honda had them and so I am just very careful. I cannot answer your query about the spare wheel but if it is under the floor it would not interfere. It is possible a spare cannot be mounted under the floor and if you go for the rear door mounting, it will obstruct the camera. Some I believe lose some boot space and carry the spare wheel there. As to downside, Colin has done a pretty comprehensive write up. My two moans are the parcel shelf, which even after nearly a year this old fool forgets to lower it after loading the boot and the top of the door is a good head cracker if you are loading the boot from the left hand side. Not much to put up with in an otherwise pretty good vehicle. I speak as a person that was not a liker of Fords and I have driven a few in my years, I have had to change my opinion. Personally I think the Titanium is the best bet as it gives you the little extras without paying for an ST. If you want the posh bits then go for the ST. but the Titanium is quite well fitted out. Good luck with your choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Freddy - sorry, I should've said we're looking at a new one. I've been reading the reviews on the What Car? site and having driven the car, I don't share their negativity. My view is that their drivers test drive their cars to the limit - so their view of good roadholding is not mine. Me? As a fully signed up member of the old fool club, I drive normally - no body lean, howling tyres, 0-60 dashes.. etc etc. That's all in the past!
The punchy engine impressed me too. (our Tiguan is a 2 litre 150bhp diesel)
We're trying to find a Ford dealer around here who has a Titanium spec in stock with the softer suspension. We were told it was made in Romania too - as is the UK model.
The spare wheel issue is still not resolved. I would have thought that a space saver spare wheel would fit under the floor..
The Tiguan also has thick A frame pillars..
Many thanks
Geoff
 

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Good luck in your quest. I am surprised that you are moving from a VW as we are constantly told of the superiority of VW and it's finish. I am afraid looking under the back end is no longer possible as my old frame is knackered but there does seem to be a void there and perhaps a knowledgeable mechanic might somehow fit a space saver under the rear floor.
I don't know how many miles your test car had managed but the engine gets freer after about 3000 miles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The reason I'm changing the Tiguan TDi is that it's clear that the days for diesels in France are numbered. I'm a big fan of VW build quality but Ford isn't that far behind - and, to be honest, I like the Ecosport very much. The one we test drove had 4000km (2500miles) on the clock.
Had a phone call from the Ford concessionaire late this afternoon to tell us they have a Titanium for us to test drive tomorrow.
I'm going to examine the spare wheel option with the garage.
 

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I didn't like the idea of no spare wheel. Had a look on a well known auction site, and found one from a breakers yard. It is identical to my wheels, so got a bargain at £50 Had a tyre put on it, and now have a proper spare. I bought a jack, and wheel nut brace. So all sorted now.
 

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Yes, an owner is far better with a spare wheel, as even if an owner cannot change it for some reason (it is heavy) then the AA, RAC or Green flag guy can just change it for you then and there, instead of having to take your puncture to a garage and return, taking hours.
@Bobbyecosport..well done getting a spare, and from a safety point of view make sure that spare is well strapped down in the boot (if it cannot go in the boot well).
 

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Lets hope you are not disappointed.I say this because it is each persons choice. Our Titanium is in for it's first service next Tuesday. A year of very pleasant motoring, one puncture and a 2 minute hiccup with a sensor that has not been repeated.
After your VW I think you will be pleased with the Titanium and it's tiny engine.
On my fortnightly 100 mile round trip last Monday it was blowing a gale. On the way down it was behind the car and the problem was keeping the speed down to 70mph, this little engine is so willing. On the way back the wind had shifted and was blowing across. Although you could feel the effect on the body, the car stayed virtually glued to the road. Even Artics were having problems with their trailers but the Ford just kept going.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
After your VW I think you will be pleased with the Titanium and it's tiny engine.
Sorry, I missed this post of yours Freddy. I must say that I was astonished to find out that the Ecosport's engine was just a one litre 3 cylinder jobby.. I thought it was full of beans and very punchy. Looking forward to driving it on the mountain roads here.
My Tiguan is 2 litres and 150bhp..
Wonder how Ford squeeze 125bhp from half the capacity..? Must be some technology there.
 

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I cannot comment on VW as I have not driven one since about 1969!!!!!!! I too am surprised at the three cylinder engine but Ford have won many accolades with this engine. I read much about turbochargers and their problems, especially turbo lag. To be honest after a year of not thinking about it I decided to test it after my Wife who is NOT car interested asked about the turbo. At about 50mph I increased pressure on the throttle and there was a slight delay before the turbo kicked in but as it took a year to try, it obviously wasn't an issue. Another matter is the smoothness of the engine EXCEPT at around 1500 revs when there is some low level vibration. Unfortunately being an auto box this happens at around 30mph in 6th gear. However I freely admit that I have never been a Ford fan until now and this vehicle has certainly changed my mind.
It IS punchy and full of beans. We do a fortnightly 100 mile round trip and on the A30, the biggest problem with the Ecosport even with a light throttle is keeping it at 70mph. Steep hills really are not an issue with ours it just selects the right gear but with a manual you might have to come down a gear or two. I have also noticed going down steep hills how the set up selects a lower gear to give engine braking something that was lacking in our previous autos

Enjoy the vehicle.We do!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I've long fancied an auto but my wife has never driven one so in deference to her wishes, we're getting a manual.
My history with VWs goes back a loong time. I've had two Beetles, a Passat estate, two diesel Golfs and three Tiguans..
With all this B**x*t in the news, the intransigence of our European "Friends & Partners", plus VW's cheating with emissions, I decided enough was enough and so I looked around for a friendly car manufacturer that wasn't mainstream EU. OK, the Ecosport's built in Romania but that's less toxic to me than all my hard-earned dosh going straight to Wolfsburg.
A friend of mine in the UK is re-ordering his life based on the origin of the products he buys. I'm supporting Scotland a lot! Especially the area around Speyside! (that's all I'm saying!☺)
Saw another one on the road this morning..
We only do 70mph and more on the autoroutes, otherwise we enjoy the scenery! French roads that, for years, were smooth have been allowed to deteriorate and we found the Tiguan was a firm ride. Hope the Ecosport is more compliant.
Regards
Geoff
 

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Reading your comments about French roads is a little surprising. Whilst I appreciate 30 yrs is a long time in politics, in 1989 for our 25th wedding anniversary we used a Brittany Ferries organised trip. We drove ( I wasn't allowed to as friends had invited themselves along and they couldn't map read!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) from Caen where their VW was subjected to the Gallic thoughts on what the Germans had done there, through France staying in an Hotel that must have been the basis for AlloAllo over the Auvernne, At St Flour the prebooked hotel refused us as they had accepted a load of Germans. Into Italy via the Little St Benard pass which was in bad repair but oh such fantastic scenery to Lake Orta returning through Switzerland and then back into France. The point, well we used all 'D' roads in France. Beautiful smooth quiet roads passing through the French countryside. It was September and so the Sun Flowers were everywhere. The French were in the main very friendly, I think perhaps helped by my Wife speaking French. As were the Italians but the Swiss a little stand offish but not so when we went there in the coach.

Reading your post clearly this idol has now passed which is a great shame.
Recently we have been on coach trips to Austria and another to Switzerland. Our comfort stops in France OK as in Belgium BUT when we touched Germany we were even refused access to disabled toilets. The roads appeared to be OK but then a coach tends to iron out the bumps.
Now pot holes. The Ecosport tends to .cope well with them certainly it's not a trip to have the tracking done very few miles as the Jazz the undulations in the surface are felt but the whole car seems to be somewhat well built and heavy which does seem to cope with the worst.
Thanks for allowing me to relive a trip through some beautiful country side. We hope you enjoy your long trip across France in the new car.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Like you, I always used to marvel at how well France managed to maintain such a vast road network. To be honest, maybe I was being over-critical with my comments about their roads. The problem is that when you have been used to roads that were once billiard table smooth, any deviation from that is pretty noticeable. They are still pretty good but I suspect that in the current financial climate that road maintenance budgets have been squeezed.

Many's the time though when out on country roads deep in France I've wondered how they managed to keep them so well - given the absence of traffic.
What I'd say to anyone contemplating a car trip to France is - don't forget the D roads.. It's there that you find the real France - the family-run restaurants with value for money fixed price menus. A few months ago I started compiling a map of restaurants in France that haven't yet succumbed to the temptation - as so many have - of buying in pre-prepared meals (from a UK company of all things!) and using a microwave to heat them up. The ones on my map are all restaurants that cook from scratch. OK, many of them are in the south west but I'm trying to expand its coverage further afield.

Just over a week to wait now before our Ecosport arrives.
 

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Two things i never liked about driving in France, unless the driving laws have changed from over a decade ago. The last time I drove there.

1....Priority goes to those entering a roundabout, and those on it has to stop for oncoming traffic, always thought the logic of that being backward, compared to most of the driving world. LOL

2....'The rule of the right with diamond signs', where cars could just bomb on from a side road onto the main road, and those on the main road had to make way. Again logic is backwards :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Hi Colin,

1. There are very few places now (to my knowledge) where those joining a roundabout have priority. The main one that springs to mind is the one that circles the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. If you think about it, if those on the roundabout had priority, with that volume of traffic I reckon it would be v difficulty/impossible to join it.. Once you understand the system in use today - ie, those joining have priority, it does manage to work. Plus it slows traffic on it right down - which is probably no bad thing.

2. My wife once explained the logic of this to me.. Given that the first instinct of a Frenchman in a car is to put his foot on the gas (!), this priority to traffic emerging from the right serves to slow down traffic on the main road - because if you hit a car joining from the right, you were clearly travelling too fast.

It makes you wonder why they didn't just put a Stop sign on the secondary road.. I can't help you with that. Sometimes what seems straightforward and logical to us isn't to them. (I think our brains must be wired up differently!)

I talked about the pleasure of driving on French D roads above.. Be aware that the speed limits are enforced and when entering a village, the moment you pass the sign with the name of the village on it, the speed limit is automatically 50km/h (30mph).. unless there's another sign to the contrary.

Priority to traffic on the right.. Here's a translation of the French rules for you. The sign with the X on it means that traffic emerging from the right has priority.. You'll see this from time to time on French D roads - if you treat it as a slow down sign you won't go far wrong - plus you do have to give way to traffic joining from the right.
The yellow diamond means that the road you're on has priority - and you can relax (& put away that pump action shotgun!)
The sign in the middle (from the above link) means that you're on a priority road (I think - I'll have to ask Madame)

Finally, old habits die hard and I've often wondered if learner drivers in France are taught how to drive on a roundabout.. There are those who will drive around in the outside lane (ie, on the extreme right) without indicating and they'll do a 270 before turning off without a signal.. Or they have their indicator flashing right all the way around. There are also those who treat roundabouts as a place to overtake (either on the left or the right). Someone once said if you see a Frenchman indicating on a roundabout, you're looking at a Frenchman who can't understand why his wipers aren't working! For the most part, they are good drivers - but there's always a few who can spoil your day.

Hope I haven't confused you.

Just stay calm and think happy thoughts!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
There are also those who drive at speed up to a junction hoping that there's a gap in the traffic that they can squeeze straight into - only to brake at the last moment when they realise they can't.
They're better on the autoroutes - you seldom see them camped out in the outside lane at the legal limit.. plus I can't remember the last time I had to give someone a quick flash (of the lights!) to give them a hint to move over - they use their mirrors well.
Lane discipline - how long have you got?!
Finally, don't attach any importance to someone indicating.. it might mean that they're about to turn.. or it may not!☺
I try not to get wound up by their antics - they drive differently that's all.
 

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ColinJYD Yes wheel secure, and was lucky to get one from a breakers yard, basically like new. Tyre company said it was in excellent condition, not bent or damaged. I also bought a small trolley jack, that will reach to lift car, as some scissor jacks won't go high enough.
 

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@Geoff 64, yeh, driving in France is real confusing, still is, and I found my foot always ready to hit the brake pedal. Best solution for me, is stay out for France >:)

As for French car laws, well they still have an effect of us here in the UK, as France recently introduced it being illegal for any sat nav in a car to have fixed speed camera warnings, and that now seems to have affected some of our car makes here in the UK.

My wifes car is a 453 Smart Fortwo and sat nav can get updated via an SD card by downloading the latest update from the internet, and now owners are complaining that sat nav speed camera warnings have been disabled, even though we are in the UK.

Smart said all updates are the same for the whole of Europe, so to make their Smart cars legal in France, all Smarts have to have speed warnings removed. So many owners here in the UK are refusing to update their systems, being warned by Smart forums. And as I do updates on my wifes Smart car, I also have not updated or we lose speed camera warnings, which are useful.

The joys of Cars being messed around by internet updates LOL.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
@Geoff 64
My wifes car is a 453 Smart Fortwo and sat nav can get updated via an SD card by downloading the latest update from the internet, and now owners are complaining that sat nav speed camera warnings have been disabled, even though we are in the UK.

Smart said all updates are the same for the whole of Europe, so to make their Smart cars legal in France, all Smarts have to have speed warnings removed. So many owners here in the UK are refusing to update their systems, being warned by Smart forums.
Welcome to the joy of the "One size fits all" Europe. Surely the answer to this should have been for Smart to either disable the warnings for cars sold in France - or to disable the French warnings for all their cars. Neither of these fixes would have been technically difficult.
Disabling all speed warnings for all cars is a draconian solution.
 
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