Spec-sheet brawl: Ford EcoSport vs. Geely Coolray

The established subcompact SUV versus the newcomer
by Andrew Guerrero | Jan 27, 2020
ILLUSTRATION: Andrew Guerrero

Sports utility vehicle sales are still going strong as more units find their way into people’s driveways and garages. Here, we pit the Ford EcoSport Titanium EcoBoost, the latest version of the model that started the local subcompact SUV segment, and the similarly priced Geely Coolray Sport, one of the latest to join the club. So, how does the established nameplate stack up against the newcomer? Let’s take a closer look and find out.

Both vehicles are unibody front-wheel-drive-based models, but the two companies took very different approaches when it came to design. The current second-gen EcoSport was originally developed for both Brazil and India. It had to fit certain parameters dictated by its main intended markets. The Coolray, on the other hand, is free of these constraints which explains why it is larger overall. 

Let’s look at each model’s styling. The EcoSport is tall in height, short in length, and is designed to optimize interior space while having a small footprint. In contrast, the Coolray is more stretched out, and is lower and longer than the Blue Oval’s offering. Up front, the EcoSport wears a bolder version of the brand’s trapezoidal grille, a design inherited from the rugged Ford truck models. The Coolray features a slim grille with more delicate details for a more sophisticated look.

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Moving on to the sides, the EcoSport has more prominent wheel arches and deeper creases, while the Coolray goes the Volvo-like route with pronounced lines for a neater look. The chrome division on the Coolray’s D-pillars allow it to have a cleanly executed contrasting roof color.

At the rear, the EcoSport gets an old-school, SUV-style side-hinged door with an externally mounted spare tire. The Coolray goes the opposite direction with a car-like design reminiscent of a hatchback. Inside, the Ford goes for a chunky dash, while the Geely goes for a cleaner Euro-inspired look with chrome trim and a digital gauge cluster.

So, what’s under each vehicle’s hood? Interestingly, both subcompact SUVs are powered by compact three-cylinder turbocharged gasoline engines. The top EcoSport is motivated by its tiny 123hp 1.0-liter EcoBoost mill, while the Coolray gets a larger 175hp 1.5-liter turbo. The small Ford gets a conventional automatic transmission, while the Geely uses a dual-clutch tranny with paddle shifters. Front-wheel drive is standard for both vehicles. While the Blue Oval’s SUV is down on power and number of gears, it does offer a larger fuel tank.

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When it comes to suspension layout, the two are nearly identical. Both come with independent MacPherson struts up front and a semi-independent torsion beam at the rear, pretty much the common setup for this category. When it comes to wheel and tire combinations, the EcoSport is equipped with 17-inch alloys on 205/50 R17 tires, while the Coolray Sport wears larger 18-inch wheels on equally larger 215/55 R18 rubber. Despite the little Ford having smaller-diameter tires, it has the advantage when it comes to ground clearance.

In the safety department, both subcompact SUVs have six airbags, anti-lock braking system, traction control, and electronic stability control. Both also have disc brakes on all four corners. The Coolray goes a step further by having a 360-degree camera mode and blind-spot monitoring, as well as the convenience of having auto-park assist.

Each vehicle has its own strengths, but which do you think is the better buy? Check out the specs below and let us know what you think.

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2020 Ford EcoSport Titanium EcoBoost

2020 Geely Coolray Sport

Price (Philippine Peso) 1.190.000 1,198,000
Seating capacity 5 5
Engine type 1.0-liter inline-3 turbocharged gasoline 1.0-liter inline-3 turbocharged gasoline
Power (hp) 123 175
Torque (Nm) 170 255
Fuel tank capacity (liters) 52 45
Transmission 6-speed automatic 7-speed dual-clutch
Brakes (Front/Rear) Disc/disc Disc/disc
Wheels 17-inch alloy 18-inch alloy
Tires 205/50 R17 215/55 R18
Front suspension Independent MacPherson strut Independent MacPherson strut
Rear suspension Torsion beam Torsion beam
Seat material Leather Leather
Infotainment system 8-inch touch screen  10.25-inch touch screen 
Push start button Yes Yes
Airbags 6 6
ABS w/ electronic brakeforce distribution Yes Yes
Traction Control Yes Yes
Electronic Stability Control Yes Yes
Rear Camera Yes Yes (360-degree view)
Blind Spot Monitor No Yes
Dimensions (mm) 4,325 x 1,765 x 1,656 4,330 x 1,795 x 1,609
Wheelbase (mm) 2,519 2,600
Ground Clearance (mm) 209 196

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ILLUSTRATION: Andrew Guerrero
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