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AIMS: Ford EcoSport slipping out to 2014

On show: The next FPR V8 Supercar will be on display at Ford’s stand at this year’s AIMS in Sydney.

Ford Australia confirms AIMS line-up, including EcoSport and next FPR V8 Supercar

Ford logo21 Sep 2012

FORD Australia’s Brazilian-designed EcoSport mini-SUV might not launch Down Under until the first quarter of 2014, six months later than expected.

Nevertheless, the macho-styled crossover – a rival for Holden’s forthcoming Trax – has been locked in as the headline act of the Blue Oval’s downsized stand at next month’s Australian International Motor Show starting in Sydney on October 18.

As we reported last month, Ford Australia will host a smaller-than-usual stand at this year’s AIMS – believed to be 484 square metres, or about one-third that of local rivals Holden and Toyota – but countered with a more substantial outdoor presence.

Despite the reduction, the Blue Oval says it will display a range of new vehicles alongside the EcoSport, including the new Focus ST hot hatch, as well as its factory backed and Falcon-bodied FPR ‘Car of the Future’ V8 Supercar.

The announcement that it will display its FPR racer comes in the same week as arch-rival Holden unveiled its factory-backed car and Erebus Motorsport merged with Stone Brothers Racing to enter a trio of Mercedes-badged privateer cars.

As we have reported, the FPR racer will be will be finished in the brand’s international black, white and blue paint and will feature EcoBoost decals – referring to the company’s efficient turbo engine line.

Meanwhile, the EcoSport will be the second model in Australia to get Ford’s new 88kW/170Nm 1.0-litre three-cylinder EcoBoost turbo petrol engine, after the revised Fiesta light car on which it is based.

This is the same powertrain that won the prestigious International Engine of the Year award earlier this year, and is related to the turbocharged 2.0-litre four-pot now used in the Falcon.

The EcoSport will give Ford a presence in the booming small SUV segment – up a whopping 65.4 per cent this year – and will give the company a three-pronged SUV attack alongside the new-generation Kuga compact and the Australian-built Territory.

Joining the EcoSport in Sydney will be the Fiesta, Focus, Mondeo, Falcon, Kuga,Territory and Ranger, plus the new FPV GT RSPEC sedan and Pursuit Ute.

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