2018 Ford Aspire gains a brand new 1.2-litre petrol engine making 96 PS and 120 Nm along with a slew of exterior and interior changes
The facelifted Ford Aspire sedan is just two days away from launching in India and it has understandably garnered plenty of attention. Having been spotted a number of times, it took Ford quite a while to officially announce its market entry. The 2018 Ford Aspire will compete against usual rivals Maruti Suzuki Dzire, Honda Amaze, Hyundai Xcent and Tata Tigor in the bunched up subcompact sedan segment.
Ford has every reason to be optimistic as the latest generation Honda Amaze has continuously been registering over 9,000 unit sales since its launch and the segment leading Dzire sits right at the top of monthly sales charts. Having endured decent response in its three-year reign, the facelift is expected to bring the Aspire much needed attention among domestic customers.
Expected to be priced between Rs. 5.9 lakh and Rs. 8.9 lakh (ex-showroom), the new Aspire comes with updated front grille compounded by honeycomb mesh, chrome surrounds, revised headlamps and newly designed bumper with wider air dam and new fog lamps adding more dynamism to the overall design.
In the top-end variants, the front bumper adorns silver treatment along with a new alloy wheel design while the rear section gets tweaked bumper and reverse parking camera positioned above the number plate. The interior comprises of two-tone black and beige theme and it shares several elements with the recently updated EcoSport.
The new centre console features a 6.5- or 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, new central AC vents, optimised dashboard with less number of buttons, dual airbags and ABS with EBD as standard, six airbags in high-spec models, etc. The biggest addition to the range is the new and more powerful 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine.
Having made debut in the Freestyle, the new powertrain develops 96 PS and 120 Nm. On the other hand, the 1.5-litre diesel stays put with no change in performance but tuned for better mileage at 26.1 kmpl. It makes 100 PS and 215 Nm peak torque. As for transmission, a five-speed manual and a six-speed automatic drive the wheels.
The Dragon series engine is available only with a five-speed manual gearbox and is claimed to deliver 20.4 kmpl – 2.24 kmpl more frugal than the outgoing unit. Ford has a surprise in store for us as a new 1.5-litre petrol found in the EcoSport will also be introduced with 123 horsepower and 150 Nm of torque – around 13 hp and 14 Nm more than the outgoing mill.
It is connected to only a six-speed automatic transmission, in place of the more expensive dual-clutch system, to return 16.3 kmpl – 0.7 kmpl lesser than outgoing engine. The facelifted Aspire has standard 5 yr/1,00,000 km warranty – 3-year longer than the outgoing model.
Other important features in the updated Aspire are adjustable front and rear seat headrests, electrically adjustable ORVMs, remote keyless entry, rear defogger, automatic climate control, push button start, Hill start assist, ESP, traction control, body-coloured door handles and wing mirrors, rear seat centre armrest, Ford Sync3 technology, emergency assistance service, dual USB ports, etc.