When Ford introduced its SUV EcoSport in Nepal in 2013, it combined luxury with a rugged handling in the country’s rough roads – a rare combination. Now, in introducing a vehicle that feels like an SUV but does not dig such a deep hole into your pocket, Ford seeks to address the growing demand for affordable yet smooth rides.
GO Automobiles, Ford’s authorised distributor in Nepal, launched the latest global product, Ford Freestyle, a Compact Utility Vehicle (CUV) that combines the iconic design of a SUV with features Nepali customers look for in a car.
After they became a huge hit in India, Ford cars were introduced in Nepal in 2000. Ten years later, Ford changed its distributor and joined hands with GO Automobiles and brought Next-Gen Figo, Figo Aspire, Fiesta and the classic SUVs Endeavour and EcoSport. The new Freestyle is the first car in the CUV range to be introduced in Nepal.
“Ford specialises on bigger cars with more than 1,500cc, and the new Freestyle does not fall under that category. It is the smallest car ever made by Ford, specifically tailored for India and Nepal where the roads are rough and people demand compact cars,” says Akash Golchha of GO Automobiles.
At first glance, the Ford Freestyle has a masculine and sporty look with striking straight black lines sweeping out from the front to back. The front bumper vehicle has an integrated skid plate and sculpted fascia sections that create a protective full-width beam element, accentuating Freestyle’s SUV looks and credentials.
The all-new product from Ford is constructed with three-cylinder 1.2L TiVCT petrol engine, delivering 96ps power and ground clearance of 190mm, the highest in its segment, making it a perfect choice for off-roading.
For safety, the car comes with Active Rollover Prevention combined with Electronic Stability Control, to automatically detect potential rollover situations by applying brakes to individual tyres and decreasing engine torque. With six airbags and a Sync 3 infotainment system, Ford Freestyle combines safety with the latest technology to provide comfort and convenience to drivers.
While India aims to go completely electric by 2030, Nepal continues to import private vehicles with petrol and diesel engines. On bringing Ford’s electric models to Nepal, Golchha says: “We are waiting for Ford to support customers with after sales service like repair, maintenance and training as well. Only then will we be able to release their electric versions in Nepal, possibly in 2020. Until then, we are betting on this new crossover, fully confident that it will lead the market.”
Ford Freestyle is priced at Rs 2,699,000