Ford EcoSport a Hit with Generation Z

If there's one trait that Generation Z, those born after 1995, share with their parents, grandparents, and other members of earlier generations, from the Baby Boomers and Gen X to Millennials, it's SUV appreciation.

According to a 2016 study by the car and truck research and valuation experts at Kelley Blue Book and Autotrader, 92 percent of those who'd fall in the Gen Z age bracket own or plan to own their own vehicle. It seems they've found subcompact crossovers affordable first-car options, too. Sales of such in the 18-to-24-year-old demographic saw a 541 percent increase from 2014 to 2017 -- a huge jump in just four years -- and they're projected to surpass sales of other small cars as early as during 2019. Most interestingly, the new Ford EcoSport has quickly risen to become one of nine prime contenders in the field.

So, what makes the small Ford SUV the right choice for a younger driver just starting out?

Let's take a look at what's been dubbed "the Connected Generation." They make up a quarter of the US population and will represent 30 percent by 2020. If we look at licensed drivers younger than 25, an apt cross-section, that's 26 million around-college- and post-college-age people.

How can we describe them "by the numbers?" For instance, 35% of study respondents list a vehicle's infotainment system as most important, with in-vehicle tech likely just as central for an always-connected demographic. 73% can be said to connect to the Web within an hour of getting up in the morning, so it stands to reason. Therefore, some conclusions begin to form, and a few answers to the question present.

  • For one, the new EcoSport comes well-appointed for Generation Z needs. It offers a host of available technologies for keeping in touch and in-the-know, on the go. Choose between SYNC and SYNC 3 infotainment systems, and you'll find Apple CarPlay and Android Auto available for connecting a smartphone, enhanced voice recognition for ease of use, and optional pinch-to-zoom and Waze crowd-sourced navigation options for getting there and back again. Perhaps best of all, FordPass Connect with 4G LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot support is available for getting on the Internet in-vehicle, and Ford+Alexa interoperability dovetails with today's popular virtual assistant. The available ten-speaker B&O Sound System and fast-charging USB and outboard 110V power outlets are just icing on the cake.
  • Secondly, it's loaded with the cargo space needed to make a road trip of the day. Count on up to 50 cubic feet of cargo space behind the first row for anything from camp and sports equipment to music gear or office supplies. You can even tow up to 1,400 pounds when EcoSport is equipped with an available 1.0-liter EcoBoost, and up to 2,000 pounds with a 2.0-liter Ti-VCT. That's capacity for anything from a pop-up tent to a dirt bike.
  • Third, it's fuel-efficient, ready to take you and your friends anywhere the open road calls. EcoSport can get up to 27 mpg in a city like Sunnyside, 29 mpg down the highway to Kennewick, and 28 mpg combined between Richland and Yakima in FWD.
  • Finally, but not all -- EcoSport is affordable. You can get one for around $20K, making the small SUV a competitive alternative to the traditional choice of a used car for a first ride.

There's plenty more of appeal in the latest Ford EcoSport, and not just to young people. You can check it out for yourself right here at Tom Denchel Ford Country Inc. in Prosser, WA. Get in touch with our 630 Wine Country Road showroom to schedule a test drive today; we'll be happy to show you around!

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