The EcoSport small SUV could become one of Ford’s best-selling vehicles in Europe if the carmaker could get enough supply from India, Ford of Europe chief operating officer Barb Samardzich told Automotive News Europe. Around 30,000 EcoSports will be shipped to Europe from this year, but the demand for the small SUV is expected to outstrip the supply.
Samardzich said that the volume of the EcoSport would grow over time as Ford expands the range with more powertrain and trim options. Ford is expecting the Ecosport to help its bottom line as SUVs are not as heavily discounted in Europe. According to Samardzich, Ford expects very aggressive pricing on its existing models while new vehicles by its rivals are also aggressively positioned.
She said that since SUVs of all sizes are in demand, carmakers could sell them at a good price level. She added that growing demand for SUVs is placing extra price pressure on mainstream models of the same size. She noted that SUVs like the Kuga needed lighter discounts than mainstream models like the Focus.
She said the the success of small SUVs translates into higher discounts for mainstream subcompact hatchbacks. Ford will start selling in Europe the India-built EcoSport in June, particularly in Germany.
Ford of Europe is in currently in the midst of core product changeover seen to be completed by the end of 2015. Ford will sell the face-lifted Focus – to be rolled out in August – as its main new product. In the first quarter of 2015, Ford will start selling its new Mondeo mid-sized sedan and wagon in in Europe, following a delay of around 18 months due to a change of its production site.