2020 Ford EcoSport vs 2020 Nissan Kicks – Cincinnati, OH

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  • 2020 Ford EcoSport

    A silver 2020 Ford Ecosport is angled left on a white background.

    Starting at

    $19,995

    2020 Nissan Kicks

    A silver 2020 Nissan Kicks is facing right.

    Starting at

    $18,870

    123-166Horsepower (HP)122
    125-149Torque (lb-ft)114
    50Max Cargo Space (cu.ft.)32.3

    Throughout the past decade, there has been a substantial increase in demand for more SUVs as sales began gaining momentum in the North American market. Shortly after, crossover SUVs started dominating the market due to the perfect blend of cargo space and fuel efficiency, the best of both worlds for many drivers. Not only were SUVs and crossovers growing in popularity, but they were also becoming more capable in regards to efficiency, power, and even becoming more tech-centric. In the modern era, a multitude of automotive manufacturers have developed their own SUVs with varying successes. Drivers shopping for a new SUV may be curious about which vehicle to purchase due to the sheer amount of options available. Two such SUVs that are in direct competition are the 2020 Ford EcoSport and the 2020 Nissan Kicks. Both of these SUVs share some interesting similarities, but between the 2020 Ford EcoSport vs 2020 Nissan Kicks, only one is the perfect model for you. 

  • Performance

    A blue 2020 Ford EcoSport is driving around a bay.

    Both of these vehicles have different enough specs while sharing a generally similar price range. The base 2020 Ford EcoSport is known as the S trim and starts at an MSRP of $19,995. The base 2020 Nissan Kicks trim is also called S and starts at an MSRP of $18,870, although there are some omissions seen with the base Kicks that are present on the base EcoSport. For example, you may upgrade your EcoSport to an all-wheel drive system no matter the trim you have selected; this is simply not the case with the Nissan Kicks. With Kicks, all-wheel drive is missing from the lineup, forcing those who own this vehicle to stick with a front-wheel drive system. 

    Which Model Performs Better: The 2020 EcoSport or 2020 Kicks?

    The engines inside of the 2020 Ford EcoSport take advantage of Ford’s EcoBoost technology. EcoBoost is an incredible achievement in engineering, and it’s a miracle to behold. It starts with a 1.0L engine, which doesn’t sound all too spectacular on its own, however, with Ford’s EcoBoost technology, this 1.0L turbocharged 3-cylinder engine can achieve 123 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque. As far as fuel efficiency goes, you’ll be getting 27 MPG in the city and 29 MPG on the highway (28 MPG combined). This engine comes standard with the EcoSport, although you'll also find a 2.0L 4-cylinder engine, which produces 166 hp and 149 lb-ft of torque. Fuel efficiency does drop a little compared to the 1.0L engine with an estimated 23 MPG in the city and 29 MPG on the highway (25 MPG combined), which is still undoubtedly sufficient.

    There’s only one engine your 2020 Nissan Kicks can be equipped with. This engine, in particular, is a 1.6L 4-cylinder that achieves 122 hp with 114 lb-ft of torque, which is very similar to the aforementioned 1.0L turbocharged engine found standard in the EcoSport. This engine is outpaced by the 2.0L option found on Ford’s offering, which has 26.5% more horsepower and roughly 23.5% more torque. The 1.6L engine in the Nissan Kicks does grant better fuel efficiency than both engines seen in the EcoSport with an EPA-estimated rating of 31 MPG in the city and 36 MPG on the highway. Although it’s worth mentioning, the Ford EcoSport has a 13.6-gallon fuel tank capacity while the Nissan Kicks only holds 10.8 gallons.

  • Interior

    The white and black interior of a 2020 Ford EcoSport is shown.

    Features Inside the 2020 EcoSport and 2020 Kicks

    The EcoSport and Kicks both contain two rows of seating with a five-passenger capacity. Both come standard with cloth upholstery with leather as an available option, same with a leather-wrapped steering wheel. The EcoSport’s wheel, however, can be further upgraded to a heated wheel. Both seats in the front come standard as four-way manually adjustable seats on the EcoSport, and your driver’s seat can be upgraded to a six-way power-adjustable seat for maximum comfort. 

    Available Cargo Space

    Both the EcoSport and Kicks contain 60/40 split-folding rear seats, which increase cargo size significantly when folded down. The maximum cargo capacity of the 2020 Ford EcoSport is 50 cubic feet, while the 2020 Nissan Kicks only grants drivers 32.3 cubic feet. You’ll be hard-pressed to find an issue regarding cargo space in the 2020 EcoSport, but considering the size of the Nissan Kicks, we are disappointed in the lack of cargo space. Further upgrades for your EcoSport interior include a moonroof, automatic climate control, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and a 3-prong power outlet, to name a few. 

    The 2020 Ford EcoSport Is Focused on Tech

    The Ford EcoSport S comes standard with certain tech-centric features that are only available on the Nissan Kicks if you pay more for a higher-tier trim. A few of these features include a built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, which has become a staple of modern vehicle design over the past few years. With the inclusion of a hotspot, your passengers are able to connect wireless devices such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops to stream their favorite music, movies, or browse the web with a strong connection. The hotspot allows up to ten devices to be connected simultaneously, and you may keep track of your Wi-Fi data usage using FordPass. Impressively, the hotspot built into the EcoSport can be accessed by your device even when you’re up to 50 feet away from the vehicle. The lack of a Wi-Fi hotspot is sorely felt with those who own Nissan Kicks, and we’re happy to see it make an appearance on the base EcoSport.

    Compatibility With Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

    Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are absent from the base models, being reserved for the higher-tier SE trim for Ford and SV for Nissan. With these pieces of software, you’re able to connect your iOS or Android device to your vehicle’s infotainment system and access a wide range of features. The features you’re able to interact with through the system includes audio playback, navigation, and making phone calls. Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto include their own respective app stores from Apple and Google. Through these app stores, you’ll find plenty of additional apps to download and can personalize your home menu from there. Both of these software suites have gained a massive amount of attention in recent years due to their seamless integration to many infotainment systems. Many drivers these days look for these features when shopping for a new vehicle because it adds capabilities to devices they may already own. 

    Infotainment and Entertainment

    Rear-view cameras are implemented on both vehicles and are displayed on their infotainment screens. The standard screen size for the EcoSport is 4.2-inch touchscreen while the Kicks gets a 7-inch touchscreen. However, the EcoSport offers an 8-inch touchscreen option, whereas the Kicks is limited to the 7-inch screen. Even with the difference of an inch, the larger screen seen on the EcoSport is ideal for camera visibility. 

    Additionally, opting for the NissanConnect infotainment system will grant you additional features such as satellite radio, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. NissanConnect also upgrades the Kicks by fitting eight premium Bose speakers in the cabin. For EcoSport owners, upgrading your vehicle to the SYNC 3 interface is highly recommended for a multitude of reasons. 

    SYNC 3 includes a similar feature set to NissanConnect but with a different take on audio as it includes a premium 10-speaker sound system from Bang & Olufsen. SYNC 3 contains varied and useful additional features, a couple of which include HD radio in addition to satellite radio. Those looking to purchase the Ford EcoSport should heavily consider this package for the utmost enjoyable entertainment while on the road.

  • Safety

    A blue 2020 Ford EcoSport, which wins when comparing the 2020 Ford EcoSport vs 2020 Nissan Kicks, is pulling out of a Cincinnati, OH, side street.

    Standard Safety Features on the 2020 Ford EcoSport and 2020 Nissan Kicks

    Both the EcoSport and the Kicks come standard with a slew of safety features, many of which are mutual between the two. There’s a nearly identical airbag set up in both of them, and they both have features such as brake assist and child safety locks. 4-wheel ABS is present in both vehicles, although the Ford EcoSport contains 4-wheel disc brakes plus daytime running lights not seen on the Nissan Kicks. 

    Both vehicles also contain a form of electronic stability control, which helps with reducing the chances of skidding significantly. Also featured on both is traction control, which prevents your wheels from slipping by monitoring your wheels using an integrated detection system that will apply ABS to any wheel spinning faster than the other three when necessary. These are certainly decent safety features on the base models of these two vehicles, although, for additional safety features, you’ll be paying extra in the form of packages and trim upgrades.

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