The new Ford Freestyle crosshatch has now been launched in India. The Figo-based pseudo crossover has been launched at a starting price of Rs. 5.09 lakh for the petrol models and Rs. 6.09 lakh for the diesel range (all prices ex-showroom, pan India). This aggressive pricing makes the Freestyle undercut the Figo hatchback as well as all its direct rivals like the Hyundai i20 Active, VW CrossPolo and Toyota Liva Cross.
The Ford Freestyle is based on the Figo hatchback, but gets various SUV-ish design elements like an increased ground clearance, body cladding, new colour options, and a rugged new front fascia. When Ford announced the Freestyle earlier this year, we thought it will be placed between the Figo hatchback and the EcoSport compact SUV in Ford India’s portfolio. However, the American carmaker has surprised us by pricing the crosshatch lower than the Figo.
The Ford Freestyle gets a significant share of new design elements, which help in differentiating it from the regular Figo. These include beefier front and rear bumpers, black plastic cladding throughout the lower edges of the car and wheel arches, prominent roof rails, an upright nose, and smoked headlamp housings. The front bumper also features a faux skid plate, while the bonnet too is a new unit with more prominent bulges. The new Ford cross hatch also rides on new 15-inch alloy wheels that are wrapped with 185/60 section tyres.
Also Read: Why we love the Ford Figo Diesel?
On the inside, the new Ford Freestyle 2018 comes with a major upgrade in the form of a 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system. This new unit is compatible with Ford Sync3, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The crosshatch also offers Bluetooth connectivity and voice commands. While the overall cabin layout is similar to the standard Figo, the new touchscreen system will surely add more value to the Ford Freestyle’s cabin.
Mechanically, the new Ford Freestyle has quite a few changes under its skin. These include a 15 mm higher ground clearance than its hatchback sibling and a wider track. Moreover, the carmaker has introduced its new 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine from the Dragon series with the new 2018 Ford Freestyle. This powertrain will be mated to a new 5-speed manual gearbox to develop 95 bhp and 120 Nm of torque. The Figo-based crossover will also be available with the company’s 1.5-litre TDCi diesel engine, rated at 99 bhp and 215 Nm. Sadly, there is no automatic transmission variant on offer with the Ford Freestyle.
In the safety department, the top-end variant of the Ford Freestyle 2018 comes with 6 airbags, anti-lock braking system, electronic brakeforce distribution, active-roll over prevention, traction control, and emergency assistance. Ford has also made dual airbags, ABS and EBD standard across all variants of the new Freestyle SUV.