Ford EcoSport Problems: 3 Known Issues (Explained)

The Ford EcoSport is a subcompact SUV. While it isn’t exactly one of the top cars in its class yet, the Ford EcoSport is, without a doubt, a decent vehicle.

Production started in Brazil in 2003 and spread to other territories in the years that followed. The vehicle landed on American soil much later in 2018, and sales figures since then show it has been well received.  

However, in this article, we will focus on some of the EcoSport’s most common shortcomings. Let’s delve right into it.

Note, the Ecosport model is based on the Ford Fiesta, so make sure to also check our most common problems with Ford Fiesta models.

1. Grinding Brake Noise

We found several complaints about the Ford EcoSport’s brakes, even on new models.

Grinding noises often emerge from the brakes, and this problem is most common with the 2018 Ford EcoSport models.

The problem has left quite a number of owners frustrated because many of the models are still relatively new.

You can read more here about why cars may make a grinding noise when braking or accelerating.

Possible Causes and Solutions

Here are potential causes and solutions to this issue:

Damaged Brake Pads

Wear and tear come for many vehicle components, and that includes brake pads. If you hear a screeching sound after stepping on your pedals, it’s likely because of a worn brake pad.

When the pad is worn, the material on the brake plate wears off, which leads to contact between its metal and the rotor’s metal. It could also be the brake caliper getting loose and touching the rotors.

If this goes on for too long, it could damage the entire braking system; hence, we advise replacing the brake pads ASAP.

Low-Quality Brake Pads

If your brake has been making a grinding or screeching noise, the fault is most likely with your brake pads.

Like most other commodities in our world, we have low-quality brake pads and high-quality brake pads. Many people are tempted to go for the low-tier ones because of their cheaper prices, but it really isn’t worth it.

For something as important as brakes, we advise buying the best quality you can afford for your vehicle. It’d be best to do that with the aid of an expert.

That way, you can avoid having to deal with unpleasant noises caused by low-quality brake pads.

Dirty Brake Components

Many times, debris may gain entry into parts of the braking system, usually the calipers. It could be a stone or a small rock resting between the rotor and the caliper, which will cause a grinding noise and vibration.

If you don’t get the object out in time, it could damage the rotor, and you might have to replace it.

Worn Brake Rotors

Brake rotors are vulnerable to wearing out over time, and when they do, the brakes will make scraping or grinding noises. Besides the grinding noise, you’ll also feel a great deal of pulsation at the pedal and the steering wheel.

Unlubricated Brake Pads

While it is important to buy quality brake pads, it is also very important to lubricate them with a brake caliper lube during installation. If you ignore this step, you have more than likely signed up for journeys with grinding and squealing sounds.

What to Do

To get rid of these problems, we advise hiring a technician to figure out the best way forward.

Related: Ford EcoSport In Snow & Winter Driving? (Explained)

2. Jerky Transmission and Unstable Gear Changes

Another common complaint about the Ford EcoSport is its jerky transmission and rough gear shifting.

This has led to problems with acceleration and gear changes. You can read more here about this issue in our article about problems across Ford SUV models.

I have personally experienced this also on my Ford Fusion. It turns out that Ford’s automatic gear systems are prone to this issue. When I try and engage my car in reverse it will slowly roll (in neutral) for a few feet which can often result in the car slowly bumping into the next car on the parking lot. Unless I engage the brakes!

Many of the owners who deal with this also experienced strange sounds, gear slipping, and trouble reversing the vehicle.

Possible Causes and Solutions

Below are potential causes and solutions to this problem:

Low Transmission Fluid

One of the major reasons the Ford EcoSport transmission jerks is a shortage of transmission fluid. The fluid carries out much-needed lubrication of parts within the transmission.

Jerky transmission or rough gear shifting can also be a result of contaminated fluid. Here, you might top off your transmission fluid with the wrong lubricant. Transmission fluid should be clean, light red, and mildly transparent.

The clear solution to this is topping off the fluid or replacing the contaminated fluid, as the case may be.

Defective Sensor

Modern vehicles like the EcoSport have myriads of sensors that trigger transmission shifts according to data received from the ECU. However, if the sensor develops a fault, it may receive inaccurate data and cause rough gear shifting.

Faulty Solenoid

The solenoid is the component within the transmission system that directs the flow of fluid. If this valve gets damaged, it could lead to excessive release or stoppage of fluid, which may jerk the transmission.

Worn Transmission Bands

Automatic transmissions have bands that are connected to the gears to aid the smooth running of the transmission. If they wear out, however, it could lead to erratic behavior from the gears and transmission, and you’ll have to replace them.

Worn Torque Converter

The torque converter is another transmission component that converts power sent from an engine into torque for the wheels. The torque converter often goes bad over time, and when it does, you’ll notice your gears slipping.

What to Do

You can’t do much with your vehicle if the transmission is not in good shape. This is why we would advise you to give it the best care possible by letting a qualified technician handle its transmission problems.

Related: How Long Does the Ford EcoSport Last? (Answered)

3. Random Electrical Short-circuit

The Ford EcoSport, like most other cars, has an electrical system and is prone to short-circuit problems. A short circuit often happens due to a fault in the car’s wiring, which unusually shuts electricity between different circuits.

This problem occurs very often with the Ford EcoSport, as reported by several of its owners. Signs include a blown fuse, inactive and erratic headlights, amongst others.

Possible Causes and Solutions

Here are possible causes of this problem and their solutions:

Problems With the Wiring

An electrical short circuit in vehicles almost always happens due to a problem with the wiring.

Sometimes, wires cast off their chafe or insulation, which lets unintended electricity into the vehicle from the wire. This problem is known specifically as a short-to-ground circuit, and it often causes a blown fuse.

There are other times when one cut wire contacts another, triggering an abrupt flow of unintended current. This type is called a short-to-power circuit, and it occurs in a place known as the wire harness, where myriads of circuits are arranged in proximity.

Electrical short circuits could also happen because of a loose wire. Sometimes, some of the wires in the fuses loosen all the way to the ground, triggering a short.

Another reason for a short circuit is that one wire may have been connected improperly when trying to install an accessory.

What to Do

The very first thing to do is to locate the short circuit with the aid of test lights, multimeters, and vehicle repair manuals. Electrical wiring diagrams will also come in handy as they will help navigate the wires.

After locating the culprit, the next step is repairing the faulty wires and the casing. In other severe cases, you may have to replace the wire entirely.

Frankly, this is all a very technical process, and it is better handled by a certified technician.

Related: 11 Ford EcoSport Statistics You Should Know (Facts & Numbers)

General Pros and Cons

Here are some merits and demerits of the Ford EcoSport:


Below are some of the pros of the EcoSport:

All-Wheel Drive on All Trim Levels

One of the Ford EcoSport’s more impressive features is the All-Wheel Drive powertrain on all variants. For those who live in places with bad roads and harsh weather, this is most certainly a big plus.

It gives all the stability and control needed to cruise through decent levels of snow and mud.

Decent Cargo Space

When you think of a subcompact SUV, you don’t immediately think of cargo space, do you? Well, the Ford EcoSport pulled off a big surprise with its 20.9 cubic feet of space right behind its rear seats.

This is much better than many other vehicles in its class and lets you pack a decent amount of groceries or luggage. Even better, when you fold the seats, you get 50 cubic feet and easily accessible tailgate.

Fabulous Infotainment System

The Ford EcoSport uses the Sync 3 infotainment system known for its simplicity and user friendliness. The Sync 3 has the Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, as well as the intelligent Amazon Alexa.

It also has a premium sound system that will delight your ears and passengers with your favorite music. You get the option of the highly rated Bang & Olufsen sound system, which delivers pure sounds. There is simply no room for boredom.

Standard Wi-Fi and Hotspot Connectivity

For some vehicles out there, Wi-Fi is only standard on the high trim levels and left as an option for lower trims. This is not the case with the Ford EcoSport, which lets you connect to the internet regardless of the variant you own.

Great Series of Safety Features

The Ford EcoSport also standardized a long list of elite safety features on all its trim levels.

These include:

  • six airbags,
  • Traction Control System,
  • Hill Safety Assist,
  • Electronic Brake Force Distribution,
  • Anti-lock Brake System,
  • amongst others.


  • Grinding Brake Noise
  • Jerky Transmission and Unstable Gear Changes
  • Random Electrical Short Circuits

What Do the Reviews Say?

The Ford EcoSport is the smallest vehicle — car, truck, or SUV — currently available from Ford. It’s smaller than the Ford Escape even, but in return, it has a lower price and a still reasonable amount of space and utility.

Unfortunately, there are some significant deficiencies elsewhere, such as a lack of advanced driver aids, a choppy ride, and disappointing fuel economy.”

Source: Edmunds

Compact crossover SUVs are a hot commodity these days, but the 2021 Ford EcoSport comes up short against the competition. Its engines aren’t all that powerful or fuel-efficient, and many of today’s driver assistance programs and safety features aren’t available on this subcompact Ford. While the EcoSport has generally pleasant driving manners and we like its transmission, that’s not enough to compete effectively in this increasingly popular market segment.”

Source: AutoTrader

Its chunky looks give off all the right SUV vibes, and you can see that it’ll lift you nice and high off the ground. What’s more, the Ecosport is based on the Ford Fiesta, and that’s a pretty solid foundation to build upon, plus its choice of two turbocharged 1.0-litre petrol engines, with 123bhp and 138bhp, compares well with the equivalents offered by the likes of the Kia Stonic and Hyundai Kona. “

Source: WhatCar

GO BACK > problems for all Ford models.

What Is the Resale Value of the Ford EcoSport?


Model Year Mileage Price
2018 Ford EcoSport 27,658 miles $20,990
2019 Ford EcoSport 9,153 miles $21,590
2020 Ford EcoSport 8,742 miles $22,590
2021 Ford EcoSport 2,613 miles $24,990
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ⓘ  The information in this article is based on data from National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recall reports, consumer complaints submitted to the NHTSA, reliability ratings from J.D. Power, auto review and rating sites such as Edmunds, specialist forums, etc. We analyzed this data to provide insights into the best and worst years for these vehicle models.