We were recently asked to test drive the Ford EcoSport to see how it stood up to family life in Edinburgh. I don’t cover a massive amount of mileage a year around Edinburgh but equally I wouldn’t survive long without a car. A car is crucial for our school-run and getting the kids to all their various activities throughout the week. So, I have three key features that I look for in cars – safety, comfort, and coffee cup holders – the more the better.
Early on Saturday morning, I took Katie and Ben off to Peoples Ford Edinburgh to pick up the Ford EcoSport. We had arranged to meet Marc Jacobs who would show us round the car and get all the tech sorted.
For fear of looking like I knew nothing, I had swotted up in advance. But on being shown round the car, I quickly realised that the main thing I had noticed was the colour availability. There was a lot more than I realised.
Marc was super at helping me get the kids seats locked into the ISO fix and getting my seat adjusted. The drivers seat had a lumbar adjustment so I could find a really comfy position. I also loved the steering wheel could be at multiple heights or be pulled closer towards me.
On a safety note, I was delighted that there wasn’t any under floor storage. Thomas’ car seat has a stability leg and in one of our cars it can’t be fitted anywhere but the middle because of these silly storage compartments. The Ford EcoSport has bags of storage elsewhere and I’ve never quite worked out to utilise something under floor anyway. Anyway, this meant that I could easily fit the two seats in and Ben could just jump in the front next to me.
Marc took the time to get my phone set up and walk me through how to use all the hands free voice commands. He also actually explained how cruise control worked – which I’ve studiously ignored before not having a clue. I was probably a bit too excited about the concept of a heated windscreen (no more scraping ice in the winter) but totally didn’t get the point of heated seats (until later in the weekend).
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Once on way, I duly plugged my phone into the USB, got the tunes going and swung by home to pick up Thomas.
Our plan had been to head straight for Blackness Castle. Thomas of course, duly fell asleep within five minutes so we utilised the drive through to grab a coffee for me and a milkshake for Ben.
In what was quite a crowded car park and at other times over the weekend, I noticed that the Ford EcoSport was very light to steer. It wasn’t hard work to park or make tight turns and felt more like driving a small car despite having much more room. On the country roads down to the coast my only problem was taking a wrong turn and ending up in Linlithgow!
After an explore round Blackness Castle (and sending Ben up the hill to take pictures) we headed home to get ready for climbing.
Back home, Katie decided to pick her own outfit for climbing (which had to include a sun hat and crocs) but we were soon on route. We live about 5 minutes away from Alien Rock in Newhaven, which has a great array of walls suitable for the kids. With unpredictable weather it’s one of my favourite activities for Katie and Ben. It’s hard to find things that they both enjoy given their wide age range and if you follow my Instagram Stories, you’ll know we hang out here quite often!
The next morning, the weather was decidedly grey and dreary. We had hoped to go take part in an Easter Egg Hunt but thought it wouldn’t be much fun in the rain. So for some reason we decided to head to Ikea.
I don’t know about other families, but we seem incapable of visiting Ikea and not coming out with things we never knew we needed before. I had a very set list but for some reason am now the proud owner of new ice lolly moulds and a cuddly parrot.
It was obviously at this point I could really test the boot space out on the Ford EcoSport. We had already ascertained that Katie and Ben could fit in it together – and as you can see – it coped admirably with our shopping!
I like the way the boot opens because I didn’t have to reach and close a heavy boot. But equally, I know that I would forget and park too close to a wall at some point – so I think this could get annoying.
On the topic of parking, I’ve always been a bit derisive of parking sensors before. I generally thought they’re just for people with no depth perception. But I think I may be sold.
When the kids were going crazy in the back of the car, having that extra bit of security was nice. Aside from beeping, the screen indicated which part of the car was approaching obstacles. This gave me a better idea of where I should be looking and helped me to concentrate. Whilst I worry a little that they’d make me lazy, I think that peace of mind is nice.
By the time I had loaded all the stuff in the car, I was decidedly cold from the drizzle. But it was at this point I remembered that magic button… heated seats.
Within 30 seconds, I was toasty warm and very much appreciating the added features!
Following a smooth ride home – thanks to the cruise control – Thomas was napping again. So it was time for Mike to sort all the Ikea stuff whilst I went to the gym. It was then necessary to grab another coffee of course. (I know, I have a great husband!)
For information, I could locate three nice coffee cup holders in the front of the Ford EcoSport. But could easily envisage shoving some used ones in the side pockets. My own car is a tip and really needs cleaned because of my disgusting coffee cup habits. To be fair, it’s also horrible because I let Katie have a box of popcorn in there.
All too quickly, it was time to head back to Peoples Edinburgh with a very moody four year-old.
Katie seemed very taken with the EcoSport and was very put out we had to give it back. She was genuinely delighted that she could close her door herself and put on her seatbelt. She’s never managed this before so it was a real highlight for her. She could control her own electric windows (although I was a mean Mama and locked them when this got annoying!). I liked that there were two available sockets in the car that for DVD players on longer journeys. At the moment we use a single socket but if one kid pulls on it the power goes out for both. Which as I discovered on a long trip South – really gets annoying!
On our arrival back at Peoples Ford Edinburgh, Katie’s mood rapidly improved by giving Marc Jacobs her climbing ‘chat’ and because he let her play in the other cars! He was great at taking us round and explaining the other models (to Ben’s delight). But seemed much more relaxed than me at letting Katie clamber in the cars!
Before I had kids, boot space just wouldn’t have been a factor for me when looking at cars. Even safety rating wouldn’t have been that high on my agenda. But having kids obviously changed my perspective. When it got to the point that we would be transporting three kids – it really was time for a change!
If you’re at the point of needing something different, I would really recommend checking out all that Peoples Ford have to offer. They have a Spring Sale event on just now and are ready to support families who know it’s #Timeforachange
If you’re local to Edinburgh then then ask for Marc Jacobs. Aside from being lovely, he has a stash of fruit shoots and just say that I sent you!
Overall, we had a great weekend and it was fun to try something new.
Thank you, Peoples Ford for making this post possible and supporting Edinburgh Life with Kids!